WWE Raw, Smackdown and the Unknown: The Trio of Major Brands?
Good day, Bleachers. You all might be confused by the title, but allow me to explain. You see, the WWE's longevity has allowed it to claim major time slots on television networks. This obviously came in the form of Monday Night Raw and Friday Night Smackdown in 1993 and 1999, respectively.
With so much being done weekly, these two flagship shows are definitely not going to get everything done proficiently, are they? These two shows have major storyline involvements. What happens at NXT stays at NXT, and there is nothing major occurring at any event of Superstars.
Recently, it was announced by the WWE that the annual Royal Rumble has broken tradition by allowing a total of 40 superstars to take part in what used to be the 30-Man Over-The-Top-Rope Elimination Match.
My take on this matter is that the WWE didn't just do this to give it a more epic feel.
What gave the WWE the motivation to grant this stipulation is the fact that there are too many superstars worthy of some form of spotlight on both the Raw and Smackdown rosters. Yes, I feel that there are too many superstars in the WWE at the moment. I said it; sue me. If you'd think about it, the idea should cross your mind.
Looking at the current roster for Raw, you should realize that there are superstars who make appearances every week, yet no advancements are made whatsoever (for example: Alex Riley).
It's gotten to be quite repetitive with respect to which superstars get ring time and which ones don't. Ever since Nexus was formed, ring time wasn't seriously scheduled for the members other than the leader, be it Wade Barrett or CM Punk. Smackdown is in somewhat of the same predicament.
All of these rosters have too many main event superstars on the same show. How could any of these performers have equal or suitably efficient time? Well, they don't. No longer does the WWE have five top-notch performers in Stone Cold, The Rock, Shawn Michaels, The Undertaker and Triple H. The WWE has evolved into a complex business and for this reason, has grown significantly as a destination for talented performers.
CM Punk, John Cena, Edge, Kane, Sheamus, Randy Orton and Rey Mysterio are some of the names that come to mind when we now think of established main-event performers on either the Raw or Smackdown rosters at present.
With upcoming stars in Mason Ryan, Michael McGuilicutty, Husky Harris, Justin Gabriel, Heath Slater, Ezekiel Jackson, John Morrison, The Usos, Daniel Bryan, Alberto Del Rio, Tyson Kidd, D.H. Smith, Ted Dibiase, Skip Sheffield, R-Truth, Cody Rhodes, Kofi Kingston, Drew McIntyre, Dolph Ziggler, Jack Swagger, Wade Barrett and the current WWE Champion, The Miz.
I shudder to think whether there would be sufficient room for appropriate character developments.
Also, we can't forget the future ring returns of Christian, Evan Bourne, Triple H and The Undertaker.
Oh yes. So silly of me. How's the WWE to accommodate for all of these guys, in addition to having to accommodate for the Divas of the WWE? There are also too many Divas hanging around and they always seem to be switching around and taking turns in the spotlight. Come on, I mean they're always having a tag team match due to their large numbers.
Quite frankly, I believe that this is unfair of the WWE to rob the fans of the entertainment they could be getting instead of having these big players of the game in some pathetic excuse of a storyline on the sidelines and out of the spotlight.
It is only my opinion that the WWE should get another major brand alongside Raw and Smackdown—perhaps a Wednesday night event could do it. You see, I am of the mindset that merging the brands would only do harm to the business. I'll tell you why.
Too many important guys get left out of the mix of good storylines. Times have changed; there are too many great talents in the WWE as of now, and for the WWE to be leaving some of them out on a frequent basis is wrong. I like seeing some of the main event performers in the mid-card section of the entertainment from time to time, but how long can they really stay there? Imagine the inter-promotional havoc that could exist if the WWE opted to give birth to another major branded event.
Ever since Randy Orton and John Cena proved themselves as being worthy of the WWE spotlight, they've been the face of Raw and have, since 2007, always or most of the times been involved in the main event storylines of Monday Night Raw.
If so, then I'd only guess the WWE focuses on around four main-event superstars every so often. How about assigning four main event superstars per main brand? I'm just saying. If it gets too boring, the WWE could always have the draft every nine months or so. You never know. That way, it happens irregularly and so it is not as predictable as one would think.
Keep in mind, Bleachers. It's just my opinion. Everyone has a right to them. Now, I won't lie. I was one of the biggest fans who would have loved to see Raw and Smackdown merge into the greatness that it was previously. I mean, what we all saw on Raw used to be continued on the Smackdown in the very same week. However, the more I kept thinking about the situation, the more and more I gradually declined from said thought.
Both Raw and Smackdown are roughly 90 minutes without advertisements and commercial breaks. Subtract 15 minutes for promotional packages and replays and then more for any wasted time slots like comic relief segments. How could I ever expect the WWE to give all of the talents they have employed sufficient time?
Sure, some of the lower-card performers have found their niche on Superstars, but is it really doing them justice? With the inception of WWE Superstars, there was now a place for superstars to try and establish themselves and be noticed throughout the WWE universe. However, it has been evident lately that the show is lazily booked and little or no effort is placed into the once-satisfactory Thursday night event.
Like I said, I believe the WWE should create this third major brand. I really don't see how this move could harm the business. Perhaps, a green brand? I'm just saying.
Well, as always Bleachers, I'd like to thank you for your time spent on another of my articles. I'd appreciate the feedback.
Tell me if you want both Smackdown and Raw to be merged and, if so, tell me why. I'd also like to know whether you agree with what I said in this article because I'd like to know if I'm the only one thinking about the matter like I do. Feel free to comment about other topics you feel might be relevant to this discussion, also.
Thanks once again, guys. Fire away!
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