The first big post-WrestleMania story to look forward to every year is the annual WWE Draft.
While the draft may be more than four months away, it's never too early to look ahead to superstars who may be on the move once April 18, 2011 rolls around.
The two biggest names to move in the 2010 WWE Draft were former world champions Edge and Chris Jericho. Former Intercontinental champions Kofi Kingston and Christian also switched brands this past spring.
Who will be the big name to move in 2011? Whose career could change thanks to a new show and a new set of rivals?
Things will surely change between now and mid-April, but here are five names that could be on the move in the upcoming iteration of the WWE Draft.
Not all members, current or former, will be moving over to SmackDown, but a number of the stable's superstars will almost certainly be on the move in the draft.
The two that would benefit most from a move to SmackDown are Justin Gabriel and David Otunga.
WWE creative seems intent on pushing Otunga as the so-called black sheep of the stable and, for some unexplained reason, the next Nexus member to receive a singles push.
If creative sticks with Otunga's push, a good place to start both Otunga and Gabriel off would be in a feud against one another. From there, Otunga could work against guys like Ezekiel Jackson, Big Show, and Tyler Reks.
Gabriel, were he to remain heel, could provide high-flying competition for the likes of Rey Mysterio and Kofi Kingston.
Tell me to list superstars who are quickly growing stale on their current show, and I very well may start the list with Ted DiBiase.
His program with Maryse was barely interesting when it started, and its painfully pointless at this point. The feud with Daniel Bryan is going nowhere, as the focus outside of Bryan isn't on DiBiase, but on the Bella Twins (not that I'm complaining).
The jury remains out on DiBiase's WWE career. Maybe he hasn't been given a true chance to shine. Maybe he just doesn't have the "it" factor like his father did. It's worth one more try, but a change of scenery is a must.
DiBiase could head to SmackDown to begin a feud with Kofi Kingston or Rey Mysterio, much like Justin Gabriel. Mysterio could carry the feud's mic work while giving DiBiase some credibility thanks to the two world championship reigns to Mysterio's credit.
The clock may be ticking on Ted DiBiase, Jr.'s relevance as a WWE superstar. With younger brother Brett poised for a jump to the main roster shortly after his knee injury heels, time may soon show us it was Ted DiBiase, Sr.'s youngest son who received the lion's share of The Million Dollar Man's wrestling genes.
Alberto Del Rio
Outside of Edge, Alberto Del Rio doesn't have too many natural feuds remaining on SmackDown. With Edge potentially turning heel in early 2011, that narrows and already slim field.
Del Rio could enter into a number of feuds upon his arrival on Raw. My personal choice would be to see Del Rio start a program with Randy Orton, which could build The Mexican Elitist into one of the hottest heels of 2011.
There seems to be little doubt Del Rio is headed for a world title reign, and with each passing day, the small shred of doubt appears to shrink. After a strong feud with Orton, Del Rio could enter the WWE Championship picture to clash with, in all likelihood, John Cena.
A win over Cena would give Del Rio his first American world title reign and would blow the amount of heat on Del Rio through the roof.
Sheamus' ascent to the main event started that way. Alberto Del Rio's may follow the same path.
Bryan is like Midas: Wherever he goes, he goes over.
The only thing possibly holding him back from true success in WWE may be his size. The only man to wear a world title in WWE that weighs less than 200 pounds is Rey Mysterio. It's common knowledge that Vince McMahon likes the big guys—Triple H, at 6'4" and somewhere in the neighborhood of 260 pounds, may be the prototypical wrestler in McMahon's eyes—and Bryan may eventually be held back by his 5'10", 190-pound frame.
But if McMahon gives the green light to a Daniel Bryan world title run, SmackDown should be where it happens. Bryan could feud with Drew McIntyre, Dolph Ziggler, Jack Swagger, or a heel Edge. A feud with McIntyre or Ziggler would require a push for the two, but would that be a bad thing?
Bryan's character is a strong fit anywhere he goes, and would be a great addition to Friday nights. It may be the platform for Bryan's arrival in the main event, and world title, picture.
Where does Kane go after he leaves his feud with Edge over the World Heavyweight Championship? Another feud with Big Show or, even worse, The Undertaker?
Kane's career is on its last leg, as Glenn Jacobs (the man who portrays Kane) has said in interviews that he only sees another year or two remaining in his WWE career before retirement comes calling. Kane is great on the mic, and could be well used in feuds with John Morrison (until, and if, Morrison's reported heel turn comes to fruition) and other younger superstars on the Raw roster.
Jacobs has been a great asset to WWE over the years. His final gift to WWE may be in putting over some of the superstars of tomorrow. It wouldn't be the huge send-off the likes of Shawn Michaels and Ric Flair have seen, but Kane is just not in that echelon of professional wrestling lore.
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