Analysing Raw's acquisitions in the 2018 Superstar Shake-up
How will Raw's recent acquisitions fare after making the switch to WWE's flagship show?
Last night’s Monday Night Raw saw the first half of the 2018 edition of the Superstar Shake-up.
With Raw acquiring no fewer than 19 superstars on their roster, this year’s shake-up was a lot bigger than the previous year’s draft.
The landscape of WWE’s flagship show has already changed drastically and it’s not over yet. The second half of the Shake-up will take place tonight with Smackdown Live set to reveal their own acquisitions.
But as for Raw, how will their picks fare in the months ahead?
The 2017 ‘Superstar Shake-up’ saw Alexa Bliss and Miz join the brand and they became two of Raw’s biggest stars of the year. Meanwhile, the likes of Curt Hawkins and Apollo Crews failed to make any kind of impact after switching brands.
A number of Raw’s 2018 picks were revealed on WWE’s social media accounts. These included Zack Ryder, Mojo Rawley, Mike Kanellis, Chad Gable and The Ascension.
This article will focus on the 13 acquisitions that were revealed on the television broadcast and will predict whether they will succeed or fail on WWE’s flagship show.
#1 Jinder Mahal
Raw General Manager, Kurt Angle, kicked off this week’s show and was quickly interrupted by the brand’s first draft pick of 2018, Jinder Mahal.
Mahal was joined by Sunil Singh and managed to unintentionally talk his way into an impromptu title defence, which he ultimately lost to the new United States Champion, Jeff Hardy.
While this was far from a great start for the Modern Day Maharaja, I do expect him to receive another big push and he will likely become one of the top heels in Raw’s mid-card in 2018.
If this past Monday is anything to go by, Mahal looks set for a feud with fellow Raw newcomer, No Way Jose.
A feud like this could potentially allow Jinder to develop a more well-rounded character, rather than the generic 'foreign heel'.
With a deep talent pool on Raw, Mahal will need to add more to his game if he is to avoid becoming an afterthought on the show.