A look back at the 2019 WWE Draft
It’s WWE draft time once again as Raw and Smackdown look to “spice things up” by moving around certain WWE Superstars for fresh storylines.
This will be the 15th draft that WWE has held since 2002 although in 2017, 2018, and 2019 there were Superstar Shake-Ups rather than a full draft. When Smackdown moved to FOX, a proper draft was held in October 2019. WWE did not hold any drafts on 2003, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015 while anything from 2017 onward were done over the course of two nights.
As expected, there are rumors already on who will be moving to which brand with Superstars such as AJ Styles and Braun Strowman heavily tipped to be switching brands. You can check out PA online gambling for sports books and casinos covering these rumors.
The original draft in 2002 was held after WWE introduced the brand extension, effectively deciding to split the roster in two halves, with one roster touring for Raw, and one roster touring for Smackdown. The WWE champion and the Women’s champion were allowed to defend the titles on both brands. Later that year, WWE reintroduced the Big Gold Belt, the former WCW title which was now named the World Heavyweight title and was exclusive to Raw as the WWE champion was on Smackdown. The Women’s title also became exclusive to Raw.
Last year during the 2019 WWE Draft, a total of 50 WWE Superstars were part of the two-night televised show which took place on the October 11 Smackdown on FOX and on the October 14 Raw on USA Network. Apart from those 50, eight supplementary drafts were done after Smackdown and an additional 10 were done after Raw. An extra eight were moved post-draft and 21 were “free agents” due to injury or inactivity and were not part of the draft.
On night one, six – including teams as one pick – moved from Raw to Smackdown, including Bray Wyatt, Sasha Banks, Braun Strowman, Lacey Evans, The Revival, Lucha House Party. Two moved from Raw to Smackdown including Randy Orton and Kevin Owens, while The Street Profits were drafted from NXT to Raw.
On night two, 11 moved from Smackdown to Raw. These were Charlotte Flair, Andrade with Zelina Vega, The Kabuki Warriors, Rusev, Aleister Black, Erick Rowan, Murphy, Jinder Mahal, R-Truth, Shelton Benjamin, and Liv Morgan. Heading the other way from Raw to Smackdown were five and these were Brock Lesnar, Sami Zayn, Robert Roode, The Miz, King Corbin.
All the titles, apart from the 24/7 one, remained on their respective brands, with the Universal title and the United States title staying on Raw and the WWE title and Intercontinental title staying on Smackdown. None of the other champions – Raw and Smackdown Tag Team and Women’s champions – were moved, so there was no major shakeup. R-Truth was the only champion who moved from Smackdown to Raw.