During tonight’s episode of Monday Night Raw, while Seth Rollins traded verbal jabs with Paul Heyman, SmackDown superstar Shelton Benjamin attacked Rollins from behind. This led to a match between the two, which Rollins won.
When fans saw this on WWE Raw, one of two things crossed the minds of fans. The first was something along the lines of “MINNESOTA WRECKING CREW REUNION!” The second was a simple question: Isn’t Shelton on SmackDown? The answer is yes.
In theory, WWE should be adhering to the brand split that they reinstated in 2016. In about three year’s time, WWE have done a surprisingly good job at sticking to their guns on which superstars should be allowed on the brand’s they have been assigned to. However, 2019 has seen superstars – like Charlotte Flair and Becky Lynch, for example – hop frequently from brand to brand with complete disregard to which brand they belong to.
Brand-hopping could be seen as an issue for some people, but in instances like the case with Shelton Benjamin, there are more benefits than issues.
People can complain all they want about a SmackDown superstar wrestling on Raw, but when was the last time Shelton Benjamin was on SmackDown to begin with? If you had to think about it or you had to Google it, that’s not good. Personally, I would rather see an unused SmackDown superstar have a random match on Raw than to waste his talents backstage at catering eating a fudgy donut. I don’t care if he technically should only wrestle on Raw and I don’t care how fudgy those donuts are. He belongs in that ring no matter the show.
Plus, ignoring the brand split gave us what many people would consider a dream match between Seth Rollins and Shelton Benjamin. As long as ignoring the brand split continues to give us fond surprises and matches like this, I’m all for it happening more often.
The next Superstar Shake-Up isn’t until a little over a month from now and we should expect everything to go back to normal – brand-wise – after that. That’s perfectly fine, but if WWE decided to throw out a random like this again in the near future till then for the sake of a random TV dream match, it’ll get no complaints from me.