We're kicking off another new feature this week (and every Thursday going forward) called "Let's Rank" where a topic will be chosen, and the people or things involved are ranked from worst to best. Simple enough, right? This week, we're going to evaluate how Raw's draft picks have performed since the WWE Draft, which took place nearly six months ago.
#31) The Shining Stars – The tricky thing about Raw is they have so many duds on the show, no matter who is picked last you guys could easily come up with reasons why someone else was worse. For me, the Stars are at the bottom because they receive an astonishing amount of TV time, despite being an awful gimmick (their third one, no less) that fans could barely bring themselves to boo.
#30) Jack Swagger – Swagger was so bad that he "signed" with SmackDown and was fed to Baron Corbin, ouch.
#29) Titus O'Neil - His feud with Darren Young was one of the worst of the year with promos that were uncomfortably bad, I mean bad! Now, he's trying to get into New Day, running around the ring with a mini-keg, it's just not a good look. His post-Raw press conferences with Tom Phillips were funny though, I'll give him that.
#28) Sin Cara – He was eventually moved to the Cruiserweight division, but aside from getting destroyed by Braun Strowman, I couldn't recall anything memorable from him. Losing Kalisto was the worst thing to happen to Sin Cara.
#27) Mark Henry – By all accounts, Henry sound like a cool guy and a good presence to have backstage, but how is he still around? Getting blown out by Rusev, then partnered up with Golden Truth to go against Titus O'Neil and The Shining Stars is a channel-changing match for the ages.
#26) Golden Truth – Nice veteran presence to have, but The Revival can replace these two at any time.
#25) Big Show – Since the draft, Show really hasn't been around, but he's dropped an incredible amount of weight during his time away. He did return in December, to face Rollins (as picked by Kevin Owens), but then Show chokeslammed Owens to close out the segment. Classic Big Show with the unknown heel/face alignment.
#24) Curtis Axel – Getting the "Mr. Irrelevant" nickname (since he was the picked last) wasn't a great start for Axel, who then went on to lose a short feud against his former partner, Bo Dallas. Remember when he was in his home state of Minnesota and the crowd actually popped for him? Yeah, he lost against Dallas, sounds about right.
#23) Bo Dallas – Speaking of Bo, things haven't gone much better for him as he received a serious makeover, yet still kept his core "Bo-Lieve" gimmick. It received crickets from the crowd week after week, which makes sense because one of Bo's stronger traits is comedy, going the serious route just didn't take.
#22) Darren Young – I almost thought they were going to do his gimmick right, when he won the Battle Royal to get a shot at Miz's Intercontinental title, but then came along Titus O'Neil and everything went south. Not even Bob Backlund could get Young out of the lower card.
#21) The Dudley Boyz – They aren't even on the active roster anymore, so that has to bring them down a few notches. Props to how they left the WWE though, they put over Cass/Enzo, then Gallows and Anderson on their final appearance.
#20) Alicia Fox – After going missing for about a month after the draft, Alicia returned to feud with Nia Jax, throwing a box into her face was probably one of the funnier 2016 moments. After getting destroyed by Jax, Fox is now in a very strange love triangle with Cedric Alexander and Noam Dar. It's clear she isn't going to be champion, so putting her in roles like this at least give her something different to do on TV.
#19) Luke Gallows/Karl Anderson – One of the worst victims of start/stop booking, not only did they not get a Bullet/Balor Club stable, but their gimmicks have swung from comedy to serious how many times now? An early title reign could have done a lot for these two, but instead they have just been treading water in the tag division. We'll see how this feud against Cesaro/Sheamus goes.
#18) Dana Brooke – Thanks to Emma's injury (along with having a shallow women's division) Dana was trusted into plenty of TV time alongside Charlotte. Playing basically a lackey for most of it, her lack of experience in the ring showed up quite often, while her gimmick work is still fun to watch. Wouldn't mind seeing her in a manager role.
#17) Nia Jax – After squashing a number of local competitors and Alicia Fox, Jax has moved into longer matches and feuds with Bayley and more recently, Sasha Banks. Her booking has been really solid so far and if we did this evaluation in another six months, I'm confident she would jump up a few more spots.
#16) Neville – His heel turn and joining up with the Cruiserweights has been a revelation for Neville, but let's not forget for most of the previous six months he was either off TV or just treading water in the midcard. He's definitely trending up though as the "King of the Cruiserweights."
That's where we'll stop for now, debate, discuss, and then check back next Thursday for #15-#1!
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