WWE Superstar Shakeup: Should Finn Balor be Traded to SmackDown?


Finn Balor is one of the more popular superstars on the Raw roster, yet he hasn’t held WWE gold since 2016.

Finn Balor is a curious case in WWE. He has competed on the red brand since 2016 and enjoyed enormous success right out of the gate. Within his first month on Raw, he competed for and won the WWE Universal Championship. However, the night he won the title he sustained a labrum injury that sidelined him for roughly 8 months.

Balor returned to an entirely different landscape on Raw after rehabbing his surgically repaired labrum. The Universal Champion, Brock Lesnar, and the greatest Intercontinental Champion in the last decade, the Miz, held the two top titles for the Raw brand.

As time progressed, Finn Balor was not seen as a priority each week on television. Sure, he wrestled in great matches, but eventually was stuck in a black hole of a program with Bray Wyatt and the Sister Abigail character.

Balor has spent the last year toiling away in meaningless feuds on Raw, save for his WrestleMania program with the Miz and Seth Rollins which he lost anyway. In a land where the main event scene is dominated by giants like Braun Strowman and Samoa Joe, and the creative stories in the midcard are given to well-established acts like Seth Rollins and Matt Hardy, Balor is not being made a priority.

What should be done with Finn Balor?

There is no question that the former leader of the Bullet Club should be going head-to-head with the other main event stars in WWE. He possesses first-class in-ring work, has a great look, and has the ability to cut great promos (seriously, check out his work with the Bullet Club, most of it is excellent and NSFW). However, we just haven’t seen him break through since his return from surgery.

Balor has the tools to be a main eventer and champion. Right now, he is being wasted on Raw. His Balor Club has gone nowhere. He isn’t featured as a main event performer. That begs the question, what should be done with Balor?


It’s this writer’s opinion that the easiest choice for the entire Superstar Shakeup coming this Monday and Tuesday is to send Balor to the blue brand, SmackDown Live. Many would argue that Lesnar still needs to defend his title against Balor as he was the first to hold the belt and never officially lost it. Let me ask you, the reader, a very simple question in that regard: what does Balor stand to gain from losing to Brock Lesnar?

Balor would not defeat Brock Lesnar regardless of how the fans feel about him or his previous accolades. Balor vs. Lesnar may be a good match but this isn’t 1996 and Balor is no Shawn Michaels. The suspension of disbelief is too great in today’s product for a 5’11” 190 lb. challenger to take on a 275 lb. former UFC champion monster. Wrestlemania 34 showed us that even resident superhero Roman Reigns couldn’t get the job done.

What makes you believe Finn Balor, a guy who has been an add-on for most of his Raw tenure, would defeat “the Beast Incarnate?” Sure, AJ Styles competed against Lesnar. However, he was the WWE Champion at the time and still lost in a typically dominant performance from the Beast. Even if Reigns defeats Lesnar in Saudi Arabia at the Greatest Royal Rumble, Balor wouldn’t defeat Reigns any time soon.

Balor will regain his NXT momentum on SmackDown

Balor will absolutely thrive on SmackDown the way he did in NXT. He put on some fantastic matches with equally great wrestlers with whom he paired well. The way that the roster is structured on SmackDown is a far better fit for Balor where he could showcase his wrestling ability against some of the best competition WWE has to offer.

Last year we were treated to an incredible bout between AJ Styles and Balor. With zero build, they put on the best match of last year’s TLC PPV. Now take that match, sprinkle in dissension between the Balor Club and AJ Styles, and you have one of the more intriguing storylines of the year. That is not the only option for Balor either.

Will Finn Balor succeed on SmackDown?

The answer to this question sadly is conditional. The biggest concern any fan would have about Balor is the manner in which he is booked. Yes he is tremendous in the ring, yes he has the ability to main event. With WWE’s creative brain trust, it is impossible to know why they push certain wrestlers over others (how much longer will it be Rusev Day?).

If booked correctly, Balor will feud with the likes of AJ Styles, Daniel Bryan, Bobby Roode, Shinsuke Nakamura, and the other solid performers SmackDown has to offer. If done incorrectly, we will see him bogged down in a feud with Jinder Mahal or Baron Corbin where Balor acts as the enhancement talent. Also, avoid Ziggler at all costs. The feuds he’s had with brand new additions to SmackDown have been momentum killers the past year.

Next: Sami For Syria

Balor can provide SmackDown with another excellent performer capable of delivering quality programs with fantastic payoffs. He has the ability to entertain on a weekly basis. No longer will he be facing larger than life competitors that make it hard to suspend belief. WWE Creative and Vince McMahon know how to handle him properly (see anything he did in NXT). They just have to be willing to pull the trigger and commit to a push with him. As long as he is handled properly, Balor will be right at home on SmackDown with some of the best talent on the planet.

What do you think? Should Balor stay on Raw? Should he move to SmackDown? Sound off in the comments below.