WWE concluded its 2021 draft last week, but it doesn’t come into effect until after Crown Jewel, starting October 22. The wrestling world was shocked with a few names as part of the draft, and some didn’t make sense to the WWE Universe.
Was this some strategic move or a desperate attempt to get some buzz going for the main roster and add to the ratings? WWE faced tough competition from AEW on Wednesday nights, and over the past few weeks, the NFL has impacted its ratings. WWE was already under pressure from the network executives to do something about this drop, and the draft could be the masterstroke.
Surprises keep the prices going, and WWE tapped this aspect. They first picked up the superstars that were a clear draftee, and then came the unexpected names. Aliyah and Xia Li proved the rumors right by getting drafted to SmackDown.
The two can work as singles superstars or as a tag team and pose a challenge to the current Women’s tag team champions. The real shocker came when Gable Stevenson got drafted to the flagship show. He is an Olympian like Kurt Angle and Chad Gable, and he has represented the country on national and international platforms.
Austin Theory and Ridge Holland are already in the good books of management. They have received praise from backstage officials, and so their push was a good idea. The Land of Opportunity has shaped the careers of many superstars. This thought confirms that this was a good step. The puzzle was Hit Row getting drafted to SmackDown. Did Isaiah “Swerve” Scott, Ashante “Thee” Adonis, Top Dolla, and B-Fab deserve a brand change, and does this impact anything on either brand?
The fact is that WWE restricts its brand-specific superstars to switch from one to the other. The ‘Wild Card Rule’ and 2020 ‘Brand-to-Brand Invitational’ permitted some Superstars to move between shows. Does it help the WWE draft? The clear answer is no. WWE Universe and the superstars are clavering about a match between Brock Lesnar and Bobby Lashley, and this is the time to do it. Instead, WWE has put them on different brands with no possibility of this anticipated match to happen anytime soon. The rumor mill suggests that Brock will be off the screen after Crown Jewel. If this is true, then there are feeble chances of this marquee match taking place.
It is one of many examples, and unlike Survivor Series, where brand supremacy is at the core, various matches can happen. Big E vs Roman Reigns may happen at Survivor Series, but apart from it, a lengthy feud between Drew McIntyre and Jinder Mahal and various others could have happened. So, does the draft help? No. Should it be over? Yes.
The opportunities to the talent and others get diminished. The boundaries set by the brand-specific roster give the possibility of a missed opportunity a moment in time. There are so many matches that the fans wanted and still crave. This limitation has perished any chance of some dream matches from happening.
It isn’t the matches alone, as some superstars get relegated into oblivion and take part in storylines that are not up to their caliber. It creates frustration and eventually leads to the superstar flipping companies or even getting released beforehand. The resolution can happen as long as the WWE re-evaluates its decision and choices to make it a win-win situation.