At Wrestlemania 32, Shane McMahon will take on the Undertaker in a Hell in a Cell match. If Shane wins, he gets control of Monday Night Raw (and the Undertaker is seemingly banned from Wrestlemania in the future).
When this was originally revealed, many fans noticed that Shane asked for control just of Raw, not the full WWE. This lead to immediate speculation that WWE was considering bringing back the “brand split”.
From 2002 thru 2011, WWE had separate rosters of wrestlers for Raw and Smackdown that crossed over rarely (in theory).
The brand split disintegrated with the advent of the 3 hour Raw era.
New information points to a possible return of the split in 2016.
WWE marketing has created new collaterals for USA Network to promote both Raw and Smackdown for Spring and Summer 2016. Interestingly, the graphics feature completely separate rosters of wrestlers.
In the Raw graphic:
Alberto Del Rio
Meanwhile, in the Smackdown graphics:
Are these the top card wrestlers slotted for separate brands after Wrestlemania 32?
Tags: brand split, RAW, smackdown, wrestlemania 32, WWE