The 2014 WWE Draft

rybackcurtisaxel
Ryback and Curtis Axel team up and go in rounds 30 and 31

RAW’s #30 pick is… RYBACK

Andrew: His hot streak in late 2012 is long gone, but Ryback is more comfortable than ever in his own skin as a joking jock and his work is not all terrible. At least not yet.

SMACKDOWN’s #30 pick is… DREW McINTYRE

Ben: My thinking here was honestly that I was lacking in tag teams and wanted a guy who’s shown he can be part of a unit, but I also don’t think the ship has totally sailed on Drew McIntyre as a singles star.

RAW’s #31 pick is… CURTIS AXEL

Andrew: I honestly did not intend to link up RybAxel in back-to-back picks. I just saw Curtis Axel, a former IC Champion, as the next best pick available. A solid hand who can really sell another guy’s offense but just isn’t good at one particular thing. A nice pick for Main Event episodes.

SMACKDOWN’s #31 pick is… HEATH SLATER

Ben: Picked along the same lines as Drew McIntyre as far as somebody who slots nicely into a tag team; don’t think he has the same solo value as Drew, but good as a bit player.

RAW’s #32 pick is… MOJO RAWLEY

Andrew: I…I don’t know. He was the next best NXT guy out there because Solomon Crowe was ineligible and fans like him because he is basically Ryback after 20 Red Bulls. This is a “write off and hope for the best” pick by me. At least he’s a hoss at 6’4” and 272 lbs.

SMACKDOWN’s #32 pick is… JUSTIN GABRIEL

Ben: I don’t understand why with his looks and move set Justin Gabriel hasn’t hit bigger than he has as a teen idol type star in the Ricky Morton mold. Worst case scenario I’d reunite him with Heath Slater, but I think he could contend for secondary titles.

RAW’s #33 pick is… TYSON KIDD

Andrew: He has been M.I.A. from television for many, but don’t count Tyson Kidd out just yet. He is getting ready for a close-up on the NXT program in a match against champion Adrian Neville on their next big show. He is in the same boat as fellow high flyer Justin Gabriel but has the gain of being married to Total Diva star Natalya.

SMACKDOWN’s #33 pick is… NIKKI BELLA

Ben: I was actually pretty high on splitting the Bella twins, so I took Nikki without even worrying about if I could get Brie, which I didn’t. If you watch Total Divas—or read my recaps—you know that they have extremely distinct personalities, and if they’re separated, I think they’ll really shine. Nikki has been improving in the ring and I think apart from Brie would have potential as an over heel Diva to feud with Paige, Bayley, etc.

RAW’s #34 pick is… SUMMER RAE

Andrew: While Fandango doesn’t make my hips sway too much, Summer Rae does. She has now broken up with her former dance partner and is primed for a role all her own after appearing on the newest season of Total Divas. She is willing to learn, gorgeous, and can play a queen bee on TV when she feels like it.

SMACKDOWN’s #34 pick is… SANTINO MARELLA

Ben: Always a place on the show for characters like Santino, and there are few more consistently over people on the roster.

RAW’s #35 pick is… BRIE BELLA

Andrew: While John Cena is taking his main Bella squeeze to Smackdown, Daniel Bryan gets his newlywed on the red brand to stay with him. Besides, Brie has a tad more wrestling know-how than the, ahem, enhanced Nikki.

SMACKDOWN’s #35 pick is… DAVID OTUNGA

Ben: I wouldn’t take David Otunga as an in-ring workhorse, but he had a great run as one of the bright spots during the “People Power” regime and is excellent working WWE’s various charity endeavors; I’d put him back on TV in some capacity and put him to work on the media circuit.

RAW’s #36 pick is… EVAN BOURNE

Andrew: This is a total grasp. I don’t even know if Evan Bourne will ever come back to WWE television after his string of injuries and controversies. Rumors have mounted about his impending return after being out for years, and at his best, Bourne was capturing imaginations. Let’s see if he can do it again and feud with Tyson Kidd or an NXT call-up.

SMACKDOWN’s #36 pick is… DARREN YOUNG

Ben: I think D-Young has shown a lot of poise in handling the mainstream and is also a good hand in the ring; another guy who can be plugged into a tag team if needed.

RAW’s #37 pick is… TITUS O’NEIL

Andrew: Titus has the dog bark and heel push to go with his muscular frame, but outside of that, the spark still isn’t there. He needs a strongman push in the vein that Mark Henry and Ryback got, as long as he can show some decent ability in the ring.

SMACKDOWN’s #37 pick is… BO DALLAS

Ben: I had no desire to take Bo too early, but once we started making a run on NXT guys, it made sense to grab one of the most recognizable names on the brand.

RAW’s #38 pick is… NAOMI

Andrew: I already picked Jimmy Uso, so I get his newlywed dancing her way to Raw. Between the two Funkadactyls, I had to go with Naomi due to her athleticism and more natural wrestling ability. She also is one of the more convincing Divas when it comes to taking it to the other girls.

SMACKDOWN’s #38 pick is… LAYLA

Ben: As I kept trying to fill out my Divas division, getting a veteran like Layla at this stage made sense; she’s also one of the better female talents as a valet and I think could have potential in another role like backstage interviewer.

RAW’s #39 pick is… OLIVER GREY

Andrew: He has been under the radar at NXT for a while due to a knee injury last year, but he had partnered with Adrian Neville as a British high flying tag team and was going places. He is now back, and although I wanted Neville, Grey is a close comparison in some ways.

SMACKDOWN’s #39 pick is… COLIN CASSADY

Ben: I’ve enjoyed what I’ve seen of him in NXT as a guy who can elevate other guys and he also seems built to be in a tag team.