4 Superstar Shakeups that ruined careers

The 2019 edition of the Superstar Shakeup is almost upon us
The 2019 edition of the Superstar Shakeup is almost upon us
Abhilash Mendhe

This coming week on Monday Night Raw and SmackDown Live, Superstars from both brands are going to be eligible for a possible brand switch.

The WWE Superstar Shakeup first came into being in 2002, when Vince McMahon and Ric Flair chose a bunch of Superstars to switch to their respective brands. At the time, it was called the WWE Draft Lottery.

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WWE turned the Draft lottery into an annual tradition, with Superstars switching brands every year in order to freshen up things.

The Superstar Shakeup ended up revitalizing the careers of mid-carders and jobbers. On the other hand, there have been instances when the Shakeup proved to be lethal for a Superstar, and ruined their career. Let's take a look at 4 Superstars whose careers were ruined courtesy the Superstar Shakeup.

#4 Bobby Roode to Monday Night Raw

This gimmick was wasted on the main roster
This gimmick was wasted on the main roster

When Bobby Roode moved to the blue brand after an exceptional stint in NXT, the WWE Universe had high hopes from him. His 'Glorious' gimmick had made him one of the most popular NXT Superstars of all time. Roode went on to grow as a top-level Superstar on SmackDown Live and was featured in a United States Championship Fatal Four-Way match at WrestleMania 34, in a losing effort.


Bobby Roode was drafted to Raw in the Superstar Shakeup, and thus began the downfall of The Glorious One.

After dangling in the mid-card for a while, he was teamed up with another promising Superstar, Chad Gable. The thrown-together tag team went on to win the Raw Tag Team Titles from The Authors of Pain in December.

Later, the duo lost the titles to The Revival. Roode was one of the Superstars featured in the Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal at WrestleMania 34. WWE has dropped the ball with Roode and one wonders if he will ever be able to get back to his old self from NXT.

Also read: 7 Superstars who hurt other wrestlers for real

#3 Big Cass to SmackDown Live

The split with Enzo didn't do Cass any favors
The split with Enzo didn't do Cass any favors

After his split with Enzo Amore, Cass was out of action for 8 months due to a legit knee injury.

The Superstar Shakeup last year sent Cass to SmackDown Live. He immediately began feuding with the white-hot Daniel Bryan, who had just come out of a supposed career-ending injury. This is where Cass' star began to fade, as WWE fed him to Bryan on two successive PPVs. Cass submitted to the Yes Lock at Backlash, and suffered the exact same fate at the Money In The Bank PPV.


His match against Bryan at Money In The Bank was the last time he wrestled in WWE. Cass was released by WWE on June 19th. According to several reports, Cass was released due to behavioral issues. The Shakeup didn't do any favors to Cass and a promising WWE career was unfortunately cut short.

#2 Kurt Angle demoted to ECW

Angle during his first run
Angle during his first run

By the time 2006 rolled around, Kurt Angle had transformed into a ruthless wrestling machine, and went on to win the World Heavyweight Title on an episode of SmackDown, after winning a battle royal.

Also read: 5 times WWE rehashed their own storylines


After losing his title at WrestleMania, Angle was drafted to ECW, in one of the most head-scratching decisions WWE had ever taken. Soon after, he was released from WWE. Angle stated in his documentary that he had asked for his release because he was working hurt and wasn't being able to take time off, due to WWE's grueling schedule. Angle went on to claim that he was on the top of WWE's payroll when he quit the company.

Angle's 'Wrestling Machine' gimmick had tons of potential that could have been tapped, but unfortunately, that didn't happen. A Superstar of the caliber of Kurt Angle had no place on a brand like ECW, which was basically WWE's developmental territory at the time.

Also read: 3 signs WWE is listening to fans and 2 signs it's not

#1 Asuka's downfall

Asuka can still be saved
Asuka can still be saved

The Empress of Tomorrow was on top of the world in early 2018. Following her win in the first-ever Women's Royal Rumble match, Asuka challenged Charlotte Flair at WrestleMania 34.

Flair won the match via submission, ending Asuka's legendary streak that had lasted more than 6 years. Soon after, she was sent to SmackDown in the Superstar Shakeup. Asuka went on to lose to Carmella of all people and was nothing but an afterthought throughout the year.

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She won the SmackDown Women's Title at TLC, but lost it again to Charlotte, mere days before WrestleMania 35. WWE's treatment of Asuka sent the WWE Universe in a frenzy, but it was all for naught as Asuka ended up being one of the participants in the 2nd annual WrestleMania Women's Battle Royal.

Asuka has fallen hard, and fans are clamoring for her to leave the promotion and go somewhere she would be handled the way she deserves to be.

Edited by Amar Anand


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