Things are now underway for the new era of SmackDown and RAW and many changes have already happened. For example, Daniel Bryan being introduced as the general manager of Smackdown and Mick Foley as the general manager of Raw, it’s the battle between the siblings Stephanie and Shane Mcmahon as to who can run their show better. Then there was the WWE draft in which Seth Rollins was the number one pick and Finn Balor from NXT was picked as number four. Other notables that Smackdown got were Randy Orton, John Cena, and Dean Ambrose. Only time will tell how things fare in the WWE.
It looks like things could go in the right way for the WWE since RAW has their own superstars that stand out like Brock Lesnar, Roman Reigns, Charottle, New Day and SmackDown has Bray Wyatt, Becky Lynch, AJ Styles and others. So when these two sides eventually form a team and collide it’ll certainly be mayhem. Randy Orton is already scheduled to fight the beast Brock Lesnar at SummerSlam so it’ll be interesting to see what Orton can do against Lesnar after being out for a while. Vince McMahon is getting exactly what he wants out of Stephanie and Shane which is the sibling rivalry.
Of course, like any tv show, things could be changed for the better or kept the same so adding small things like adding a title belt for Raw or tag titles for SmackDown could bring more ratings. For example, Teddy Long came back for a little while and Kane tried to be corporate Kane again so these small things cause not only promotion, but chatter. It wasn’t expected that Foley would ever join Stephanie’s side and Bryan coming back to WWE as a general manager instead of a wrestler shocked many so that probably means more changes are in store for WWE.
15 International PPVs
It's a new era, but it doesn't mean WWE can't borrow certain formulas from previous eras. One thing the WWE loves to emphasize today is that they are an international empire, but when was the last time a country outside of North America got a special event? Other than the annual European tour, many places are left out in the cold when it comes to hosting big events.
14 Phase Out The Commissioners' On-Screen Roles
With Mick Foley and Daniel Bryan now the RAW and SmackDown GMs, is it really necessary for Shane and Stephanie to be on TV every week? They presumably hired Foley and Bryan to run their respective shows, so what is the need for them to be present each and every week? Hopefully following SummerSlam, the WWE will phase them out of on-screen roles and keep their appearances sporadic.
By doing this, it would elevate what being the commissioner of their show means. When they would show up, it would mean there was a serious issue that the GM couldn't address. The WWE has had on-screen commissioners before that would only appear on-screen when there was a big (kayfabe) issue that was too big to be ignored.
13 More Mixed Tag Matches
One of the more memorable main events of the Attitude Era was seeing Lita team up with The Rock to take on Triple H and Trish Stratus. By placing their women alongside two of the company's biggest stars, the two ladies were elevated in status and the fans in turn took them more seriously.
This past week on RAW, Enzo Amore and Sasha Banks teamed up to take on Charlotte and Chris Jericho. Not only was their opening promo very entertaining, but they also put on a very solid match to open up the show. Hopefully this is a sign of more to come, in the form of mixed tag matches.
The New Era is all about showing that superstars will get opportunities and that the women are being treated with the same level of respect as the men.
12 Separate Slammy Awards Show
The Slammy Awards on RAW just don't work. Fans often grow tired of matches and segments being interrupted to announce the winner of an award that's rigged. In order to avoid bothering viewers on Monday nights, why not simply have the Slammys as a Network Special? That way, the fans who really want to watch it can tune in, while the others don't have to be bothered.
While the old Slammy shows of the 80s and 90s had their problems, at least they tried to do different things, such as running little skits and having wrestlers perform their own songs with instruments.
11 Money in the Bank for Women
Instead of the numerous amount of times WWE has had the women's division as number one contender matches in which all ladies compete in a battle royal for a shot at the Women's Championship, WWE could incorporate their own version of the Women's Money in the Bank ladder match. Then the winner of that could cash in the briefcase whenever they like.
WWE could try this out for a little while and if it doesn’t turn out the way they like, they can always cut it. There are new names in the women's division such as Nia Jax, Alexa Bliss, and Dana Brooke so this is a way where people like them or any other woman has the chance to hold the belt.
10 Longer Women's Matches On Both Brands
Women's matches typically aren’t displayed long enough. Sure, if it's something like Sasha Banks vs Charlotte it’ll be on TV longer, but usually women don’t get much TV time if they're wrestling a match. If Raw is three hours long, they should allot 30 minutes for the women. If WWE wants heads turning then having more significant women's matches could solve that. Of course, some women aren’t quite as over as the likes of Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins, Brock Lesnar, and so on, but WWE has to be patient and let their ladies try to reach those levels.
9 Regular "Talk Shows"
Chris Jericho has brought back the Highlight Reel since he's been back with the main roster since early 2016, but the show basically disappears whenever Jericho leaves. Miz TV is incredibly underwhelming when talking about talk shows and the Ambrose Asylum doesn't seem like a longterm solution.
Jericho's Highlight Reel is still the strongest talk show when he has it, but it's not consistent enough. It should be used as often as possible, much like Piper's Pit was back in the day. Jericho is on RAW, which is a three hour show so that should provide enough time for him to deliver one every week.
8 King of the Ring PPV
The King of the Ring should return as a standalone PPV. It's been brought back in recent years, but the winner have quickly become irrelevant after winning the tournament. The WWE needs to add this as a fifth big PPV on their calendar. In addition to that, much like the Royal Rumble winner gets a title shot at WrestleMania, the KOTR winner should get a title shot on his respective brand at SummerSlam. This would make the tournament feel more prestigious and would give the competitors something to fight over rather than bragging rights or wearing a crown.
7 Move MITB Match To WrestleMania
The WWE has brought back the ladder match concept to WrestleMania the past two years, placing the Intercontinental Championship in the match. The crowded ladder match concept worked much better with the Money in the Bank briefcase, rather than the IC strap.
This year's match was a complete waste of time. Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn were building a good feud and should have gotten a one-on-one match with the Intercontinental Championship on the line. Instead, a bunch of guys who had no prior feud were thrown together and Zack Ryder won the title, only to drop it 24 hours later.
6 Cesaro Push
Right now Cesaro is a fan favorite, dressing up like a secret agent and having fun in the ring, but imagine that put together with him holding a title over his shoulder. Something like winning the United States title over Rusev could please the WWE Universe. Whether or not he’s holding a title, Cesaro is still an entertaining athlete.
The Swiss star maneuvers around the ring with finesse besides who doesn’t like when he does the Cesaro Swing. He’s getting the attention so he’s probably satisfied with how his career is going. A title around his shoulder may come sooner or later.
5 Titus O‘Neil Push
It was sad to hear about Titus O’ Neil’s suspension back then, but he’s moved from that and is now worrying about wrestling. He’s a big guy who can do a lot on the mic and in the ring. He may not be holding the United States title, but he has been able to intimidate Rusev and throw him around. It’s not just Rusev he’s competed against, there’s also other names like John Cena, Sheamus, Big Show, and others.
He also was part of Primetime Players where it was all about millions of dollars. Now is the perfect time for him to focus on his singles matches and earn a title shot.
4 More Distinctive Show Sets
Sometimes it's all about presentation. While the WWE has made changes to the sets of their shows, including moving the RAW announcers near the stage, there still isn't quite a significant difference between the looks of the shows. Back in 2002, when the original brand split occurred, RAW and SmackDown had very distinctive looks for their brands.
SmackDown had the giant fist on the titantron, letting you know that you weren't just tuning into another show.
Even PPVs don't really have distinctive looks anymore, with perhaps the exception of WrestleMania. The same set is used all the time with a different logo plastered on top of it. How are you supposed to get excited for a particular show if it just looks the same as any other?
3 Cutting RAW To Two Hours
This one likely won't happen, as the reason RAW is three hours is because USA Network wanted it from WWE and now the company is tied to a contract with them. Still though, whenever WWE finds an opportunity to revert RAW back to two hours, they should jump on it, because three hours is simply too long for a weekly wrestling program. WCW tried it during the Monday Night War and it was an absolute failure. If a three-hour program couldn't work in wrestling's heyday, whey would it work now?
Ratings every week see RAW's numbers dip in the third hour, even when major stars are on the show. What does that tell you? Viewers just don't have the time or attention span to sit through a three-hour show, especially with SmackDown now just a day after RAW.
2 Lose The Gimmick PPVs
The WWE's calendar is going to be stacked with many events with both brands getting their own monthly PPVs, with the exception of the months featuring the Royal Rumble, WrestleMania, SummerSlam and Survivor Series. It's time for WWE to get more creative in what they're offering.
Gimmick PPVs have never been seen as a success in the eyes of fans. Gimmick PPVs simply throw gimmicks onto matches, even if it doesn't elevate the feud. For example, the Hell in a Cell is supposed to be a special occurrence and is designed to end a feud for good. With it being an annual PPV, we know it's coming and it takes a lot of the suspense away from feuds starting in September, knowing these guys will be thrown into to the cell, just because it's that time of the year.
Each brand should now be able to come up with their own PPV concepts.
1 Keep Beefing Up The Rosters
Don’t we all love rumors. There have been rumors of possible big names coming back. For example, the Olympic gold medalist, Kurt Angle, Goldberg, Matt and Jeff Hardy and many others, but like any rumor it’s not true until it actually happens. We might have to wait a while, but these returns would be awesome to see.
Shelton Benjamin and Rhyno have already been announced to come back and if you know them then you know they were back in the old ECW days so more big names could be in store. That also implies others may not be needed at this time. Who knows later on in the road, WWE could convince other big names to return.
While the WWE has brought back some old names simply to be enhancement talents, they'll have to start getting the big guns to join the ranks. You can only have so many jobbers on both shows.
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