WWE

WWE: The WWE Draft has lost its impact on wrestling

The 2020 WWE Draft left a lot on the table and hasn’t created any buzz that has wrestling fans exciting heading into either Monday Night Raw or SmackDown.

Professional wrestling is supposed to keep fans hanging on excitement and anticipation each week. The WWE Draft is nearly two decades old and at one time it was a series of events that truly shook the foundation of the WWE. That is no longer the case. Another edition of the WWE Draft just ended on Monday Night Raw and looking back at the transactions and the response to them, it’s clear that the WWE has watered the draft down so much that it’s no longer an exciting change for viewers expected to tune in day in and day out.

Look over the 2020 WWE Draft and point out the “big” changes. There were probably only two of note. Seth Rollins and Bray Wyatt flipped shows to SmackDown and Raw, respectively. Outside of that, there really were not any moves that illicit interest in what is next for the parties involved. Breaking up the New Day has left a lot of viewers upset and confused, looking for an explanation behind the splitting up of Kofi Kingston, Xavier Woods, and Big E. Plus, names like Andrade and Mickie James went completely undrafted.

While Rollins was moved to SmackDown, the entire Mysterio Family feud followed him, including Murphy. Viewers have seen this storyline for months on end every Monday and multiple PPVs, it is hard to expect WWE Creative to ignore it now that they are all on Friday. The same can be said about Jeff Hardy. He has been linked to Sheamus and AJ Styles for the last few months, but when he was moved to Mondays, they both followed – even setting off an excellent triple threat about Styles and Rollins this past week. But how can fans get excited of what is to come after the draft if none of the moves truly give viewers anything different.

Plus, NXT was not involved at all. While it is a great thing that the top names on that brand stayed on Wednesday, this was a real opportunity to improve competition with AEW by moving names like Kevin Owens, AJ Styles or Andrade back to NXT. That did not happen, causing some to wonder how the Wednesday night show is truly viewed in the eyes of WWE leadership.

The issue with the WWE Draft is not new. Look back at the most recent drafts back to 2016 and then think about the ramifications from those picks. Since that year, many of the picks involved lesser-profile talent such as Curt Hawkins, Titus O’Neil, David Otunga, and others. 2016 was the last year in which every pick seemed to make a statement. Remember when Finn Balor was drafted from NXT and won the Universal Title weeks later? The Draft is supposed to kick off moments like that, but instead fans are fearing more of the same week-in and week-out after the 202 edition.

With Brand-to-Brand Invitationals, Wild Card Rules and Superstar Shake-Ups, the WWE Draft does not have the same cache of years past. The 2020 edition is perhaps the worst in recent memory and left a lot of opportunity on the table.