We've previously established our 10 major draft picks from the first article (John Cena, Chris Jericho, Kane, The Wyatt Family, The Miz, Zack Ryder, Finn Balor and The Undertaker) and those superstars have been supplemented by other draftees which will be appearing in this post.
In this scenario, the World Heavyweight Championship, United States Championship and Women's Championship are exclusive to SmackDown, however, we'll be saving the discussion on the Women's Championship for a separate column in the future.
So let's see what we can do with SmackDown!
WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP TOURNAMENT
(featuring John Cena, AJ Styles, Chris Jericho and Kane)
With a new world title, we need to find out who it belongs to and we'll go for the old fashioned knockout-style tournament. For this, we'll use a lot of the background roster to help fill it up, but mostly focus on John Cena, AJ Styles, Chris Jericho and Kane. These four wrestlers are quite simply the main hallmark players for the beginning of the new SmackDown draft era.
John Cena - I could rattle off his title history and his accomplishments here, but like him or loathe him, he is our generation's Hulk Hogan—just with less swearing and sex tapes.
AJ Styles - AJ Styles has shown his worth and his credibility within 6 months of (finally) joining WWE from the massive reaction he received at the Royal Rumble, to pay-per-view matches which are through the roof.
Chris Jericho - He's the wily veteran who was the first WWF Undisputed Champion. Jericho can have a good match with anybody and make them look credible.
Kane - Kane is an odd choice, bearing in mind the caliber and depth of the other draftees to SmackDown, but I feel that he should have one last run before heading into retirement. However, this won't be that run.
I'd like to see Cena pair off against Jericho and AJ pair off with Kane, with Cena and AJ both making it to the finals and AJ pinning Cena cleanly for the win. Notice I say cleanly—no interference from The Club, no weapons, nothing—just a good, clean wrestling match. This allows AJ to be put over by Cena, thus strengthening his position and his character within WWE. He might not look it, but John is 39 and we need to start looking at a WWE without him.
UNITED STATES CHAMPIONSHIP PICTURE
(featuring Rusev, The Miz, and Zack Ryder)
(featuring Rusev, The Miz, and Zack Ryder)
At the point of writing, Zack Ryder is going for the United States Championship, so who knows what may happen. I've included The Miz in there as well because, well, the night after WrestleMania happened and I'm still not over it. It also adds a third dynamic into the mix of the feud, which is always helpful. We could see a similar style #1 Contenders Tournament for the United States Championship similar to the World Heavyweight Championship one, with The Miz and Zack Ryder being the final two and Ryder getting the win. This sets up nicely for SummerSlam and the crowning of Zack Ryder. Leaving it until SummerSlam allows Ryder to get the crowd on board even more and to build up his win streak, making him a more credible champion.
The Wyatt Family vs Finn Balor and The Undertaker
This could be A LOT of fun if done properly. It has a ton of potential storytelling-wise and also helps expose NXT more, too. In turn, that will generate WWE Network subscriptions.
Yes, Balor isn't on the roster yet and The Undertaker appears once in, well, a calendar year, but this could all change. This would need the slow cooker treatment to make sure it isn't rushed and is baked to perfection. We could see the Wyatts decimate the midcard on SmackDown and basically run the show (yard?). Then, The Undertaker would come out for an appearance, only to be destroyed by The Wyatt Family. A couple of months later, the bell tolls during The Wyatt Family matches and Bray begins cutting promos about seeing a demon in his dreams before we get the announcement of The Wyatt Family vs Finn Balor and The Undertaker. Teaming Balor and The Undertaker together is also a nice passing of the torch; both characters have similar traits and Balor could easily become the new cornerstone of WWE moving forward.
What do you think of this scenario? How are you hoping SmackDown's lineup plays out? Leave us your ideas in the comments below!