Thursday Morning Backlash on the Post-Draft Rosters

Smackdown, by Jake Ziegler

Babyfaces: Christian, Daniel Bryan, Kane (WWE Tag Team Champion), Randy Orton, Sin Cara, the Great Khali, Trent Barreta, Undertaker, William Regal, and Yoshi Tatsu

Divas: Kaitlyn, Natalya, Rosa Mendes, and Tamina

Heels: Alex Riley, Brodus Clay, Chavo Guerrero, Cody Rhodes, Ezekiel Jackson, Heath Slater, Jey Uso, Jimmy Uso, Justin Gabriel, Mark Henry, Sheamus (United States Champion), Ted DiBiase, Tyson Kidd, and Wade Barrett (Intercontinental Champion)

Divas: Alicia Fox, Layla, and Michelle McCool

Miscellaneous: Booker T, Hornswoggle, Jack Korpela, Josh Mathews, Matt Striker, Ricardo Rodriguez, Theodore Long, Todd Grisham, and Tony Chimel

At first glance the roster seems to be a little crowded on the heel side and a little thin on the babyface side. Fortunately the babyface side does have a couple of strong personalities, as Randy Orton and Christian are both really hot right now. Undertaker is Undertaker, but who knows when he’ll be back. I wouldn’t be surprised to not see him until the Road to WrestleMania starts back up again. Daniel Bryan was the one guy I really cared about where he ended up because I think he’ll be a great fit on Fridays. Kane and Khali are fine at being big guys. Trent Barreta and Yoshi Tatsu are solid jobbers to the stars, and if Regal starts wrestling again he’ll be a great addition to the roster.

The heels, while plentiful in number, are short on star power. Sheamus is the only legitimate former World Champion of the bunch (Chavo, Ezekiel, and Henry did hold the ECW Title, but come on), so hopefully some big pushes are in store for him, Cody Rhodes, and Wade Barrett. Alex Riley and Brodus Clay could get a chance to shine on their own without being lackeys. Ezekiel will get a push because he’s big. One Heath Slater or Justin Gabriel will likely turn babyface, hopefully Gabriel, who could get really good. After the events of Raw and Smackdown, Mark Henry seems poised to be a top guy for some reason. Ted DiBiase has time to be rebuilt and hopefully this is something they’re interested in doing. Tyson Kidd will likely never get a meaningful push.

I would really like to see Christian win the World Heavyweight Championship on Sunday and get a run with the belt. Potential challengers would be Cody Rhodes, Ezekiel Jackson (who had some decent matches with him in ECW), Mark Henry, Sheamus (could be really good matches), Ted DiBiase (if they push him), and Wade Barrett. Other than Mark Henry I would be interested in seeing any of these matches and think there’s a lot to do with him as champion. In the meantime Orton can feud with any of the guys mentioned above while biding time to get back into the World Title scene. I wouldn’t mind seeing Gabriel and Slater both turn babyface and feud with Barrett and Ezekiel. Daniel Bryan versus Cody Rhodes would be an interesting feud, and Bryan also has a reason to feud with Wade Barrett, which could be very entertaining. Sin Cara versus anyone should be interesting, and the high flyer versus a power guy like Brodus Clay would be fun, or against Tyson Kidd.

Raw, by Brad Garoon

Babyfaces: Big Show (WWE Tag Team Champion), Chris Masters, DH Smith, Evan Bourne, Goldust, John Cena, John Morrison, JTG, Kofi Kingston, Rey Mysterio, Santino Marella, Triple H, and Vladimir Kozlov

Divas: Beth Phoenix, Eve, Gail Kim, and Kelly Kelly

Heels: Alberto Del Rio, CM Punk, Curt Hawkins, David Otunga, Dolph Ziggler, Drew McIntyre, Husky Harris, Jack Swagger, Mason Ryan, Michael McGillicutty, Michael Tarver, Primo, R-Truth, Skip Sheffield, The Miz (WWE Champion), Tyler Reks, and Zack Ryder

Divas: Brie Bella (Divas Champion), Maryse, Melina, and Nikki Bella

WWE has an opportunity here to put together some interesting match ups. While it seems the route they’re taking as of now is Morrison vs. R-Truth, which is a SHOCKINGLY engaging angle considering I didn’t think Truth had any gas left in the tank (as a babyface or a heel) I think after Extreme Rulez, or at least heading into the summer months the two would be better served working other wrestlers. Morrison and Del Rio would probably make for a great little program, and Truth’s new character seems tailor made to hold the midcard belt on RAW (whichever one ends up there in the end).

Punk seems to be on his way out, but if somehow they manage to hold on to him it’s definitely time to pull the trigger on a PPV feud between him and Cena. Punk can do no wrong at this stage in his career and would have so much material to work with now that Cena is perpetually distracted by his WrestleMania XXVIII match against the Rock.

I think the Miz’s title run has at least a little gas left in the tank, so here’s hoping he finds a way to get past Cena at Extreme Rulez (I’m looking at interference from YOU Punk). After that a feud with Rey Mysterio would bring at least my eyes to the screen, as I think the two would work well together in the ring.

And what of the midcard? (SPOILER ALERT) Though he gets needlessly bulldozed by Orton this Friday on SmackDown, it’s time for Drew McIntyre to pick up where his Intercontinental Title reign left off. The guy has been bringing it in short matches on Smackdown, so the Raw writers need to find something to do with him ASAP. I dug the stuff he did with Mysterio, so maybe a little attention paid to a feud between McIntyre and Evan Bourne would be of interest. It would be of interest to me at least.

Once Swagger turns on Cole this Sunday (that has to happen, right?) it’s probably time for him to move onto something more meaningful as a babyface. If Truth isn’t paired with Kofi Kingston in a midcard feud (which would be fun too) then hopefully Swagger gets a chance to put the new smoking menace down.

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