In recent years, the RAW and Smackdown after Wrestlemania often deliver surprise debuts from NXT superstars who are perceived to be ready to make the step to the main roster. This year will be no different but who could they be?
The Authors of Pain
This has been discussed for some time now as the dominant partnership of Akam and Rezar look more than ready for the main roster after tearing through the NXT tag team division. They have held the NXT tag team titles one time and have also won the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic and can win it for the second time at NXT Take over: New Orleans but which brand should they go to post Wrestlemania?
Prediction – RAW
Monday night RAW should be the brand for The Authors of Pain as RAW’s Tag Team division is screaming out for a destructive Tag Team and a partnership that could dominate the division for years to come. Smackdown has The Bludgeon Brothers who could be perceived as a similar style to that of The Authors of Pain so RAW should be the destination for Akam and Rezar. The RAW tag team division is incredibly shallow at the moment and let’s hope that The Authors of Pain are booked correctly and not repeat the poor booking of the Revival.
With many believing that Shayna Baszler could be leaving NXT Take Over: New Orleans as the New NXT Women’s champion the question everyone is asking seems to be what is next for Ember Moon? Moon has had some incredible matches during her time in NXT with her feud with Asuka being the highlight, but I believe it is time for her to step up to the main roster but which brand should she make a move to?
Prediction – RAW
I believe Asuka beats Charlotte this Sunday at WrestleMania meaning that Asuka will move to Smackdown leaving a gap in the RAW Women’s division. This could be a great way to introduce Ember Moon to the main roster and really showcase the ability Ember has and what she can provide to the RAW Women’s division. Early possible feuds with Mickie James and Absolution would be an intelligent way to introduce her.
An unfortunate injury forced McIntyre to miss months of in-ring action, and he is believed to be healthy anytime now which begs the question of when he will return? Many believe including myself that he will return at Wrestlemania and make a surprise entrance into the Andre The Giant Battle Royal and I give him a good chance of winning that battle royal. If this is the case, then it will be interesting to see which brand he will be on.
Prediction – Smackdown
I believe he will be on the Smackdown roster and could be battling for the United States Championship post-Wrestlemania and if he impresses and the crowd is behind him, then there is no reason why Drew McIntyre couldn’t be a main event star for Smackdown. I feel that if he went to RAW, he would get lost in the huge amount of talent they are, just look at the superstars who are battling for the Intercontinental championship at Wrestlemania. Smackdown seems like a perfect fit, and if given a chance, he will prove his previous doubters wrong.
Other potential superstars that could be moved to the main roster include;
Andrade ‘Cien’ Almas – I can see NXT keeping Almas with them for just a few months longer despite a great six months for Andrade and a great showing in the 2018 Royal Rumble. However, I would not be too surprised to see him debut on either brand after Wrestlemania depending on his result at NXT TakeOver: New Orleans.
The Iconic Duo – Peyton Royce and Billie Kay have to be really close to a main roster spot after impressing for some while now in NXT but will WWE keep them together on the main roster or split them up?
Johnny Gargano – IF and that is a big IF Gargano loses this weekend to his nemesis Tommaso Ciampa, then I believe he will be destined for this main roster. Gargano has already demonstrated his incredible in-ring ability after his instant classic with Andrade Almas and his current feud with Ciampa is arguably the best feud heading into WrestleMania weekend and I am sure that many fans would be delighted to see him on either RAW or Smackdown.