WWE Raw Preview: Night 1 of the 2019 Superstar Shake-Up and More for April 15

Erik Beaston@@ErikBeastonFeatured ColumnistApril 15, 2019

Credit: WWE.com

There is no rest for the Superstars of WWE as the best and brightest move on from an eventful WrestleMania 35 and right into the 2019 Superstar Shake-Up, which begins Monday night on Raw.

Top stars from the red and blue brands are expected to switch spots, freshening up the respective rosters and setting SmackDown Live to succeed as it prepares to embark on a high-priced, high-profile run on Fox.

What can fans expect from an explosive broadcast Monday night, including challengers to the top prizes in both men's and women's wrestling?

        

It's Time to Shake Things Up Again

One of the most anticipated events of the entire WWE calendar is the Superstar Shake-Up, if for no other reason than the hope for fresh stories and matches it brings the WWE Universe.

The opportunities it creates for Superstars who otherwise would not be granted them is also a huge draw. In years past, fans have watched John Bradshaw Layfield, Eddie Guerrero, Rey Mysterio and even Jinder Mahal rise to the top of their respective brands because of chances the brand extension gave them.

Current WWE champion Kofi Kingston, arguably, would never have sniffed his title without the brand exclusivity that currently engulfs the company.

Monday night, Superstars who may have otherwise been lost in the bunch on either Raw or SmackDown will have new life breathed into their careers and new horizons opened up thanks to the roster shuffling that will occur over the course of two shows.

One Superstar seemingly primed to wrestle his last match on the red brand for the foreseeable future is intercontinental champion Finn Balor, who is as strong a candidate to jump to SmackDown and go on a run as anyone.

As for who could find their way to the red brand? AJ Styles, who has not been a member of Raw since his arrival in January 2016.

        

Tensions Rise Between The Man and The Sassy Southern Belle

Just 24 hours after making history and leaving WrestleMania's main event with the Raw and SmackDown Women's Championships, Becky Lynch found herself confronted by a new challenger: Lacey Evans.

The Man unloaded on The Sassy Southern Belle but paid for it 24 hours later when she endured a sneak attack by the NXT export.

Regardless of what happens Monday with the Superstar Shake-Up, the women appear destined to battle each other for either the red or blue brand title, presumably as early as Money in the Bank on May 19.

The latest chapter in their rivalry should be written Monday night. Whether that involves payback by Lynch or further antagonizing from Evans remains to be seen.

         

What's Next for Seth Rollins?

Universal champion Seth Rollins finds himself without an obvious first challenger to his title as the Superstar Shake-Up commences.

Drew McIntyre, Baron Corbin and even Shield teammate Roman Reigns are viable contenders, but it feels like The Beastslayer is in a holding pattern of sorts, waiting for the roster reshuffle to conclude before he finds out which Superstar will challenge him for the gold.

If that is not the case, do not be surprised to see Corbin step up to the plate.

Fresh off retiring Kurt Angle at WrestleMania and easily the most over heel on the Raw roster right now, he would make the perfect first challenger for Rollins if for no other reason than he can be one-and-done at Money in the Bank, where a new challenger will emerge with a briefcase.

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