Tossing Salt Presents:
Stay or Go: An In-Depth Analysis of the Full Rosters of AEW & The WWE
Men of WWE RAW
November 13. 2022
Over on YouTube on the Jim Cornette podcast, The Jim Cornette Experience, the esteemed wrestling historian and legend, Mr. Jim Cornette, along with co-host Brian Last, took a very detailed look at the entire roster of All Elite Wrestling. They went down the entire AEW roster and made comments on each member of the roster and if Jim, if given the book at AEW, would keep or dismiss each AEW talent. It was a very insightful and interesting listen and you should go check it out.
And it got me wondering. I’m no Jim Cornette, but I’ve been told I’m a good judge of talent and have a good mind for the business. If I was to take a look down the line at the AEW roster and each talent, what would I do with them? Keep them? Fire them? Teach them how to do the hokey-pokey and shake it all about. Well, there is only one way to find out. So I did exactly that. I did four columns over the past few days and dissected the talents that are AEW. Be sure to check that out.
But why stop there? AEW may be in the books, but what about the WWE? What about the talents that wrestle every Monday and Friday night for the world’s largest wrestling promotion? Who would I, if given the choice, keep on the main roster? Who would be sent back to Developmental or given one of those “We wish you best in future endeavors” moments? Well, we’re preparing to find out. It starts now with the roster of Monday Night RAW. And as Triple H would say, “Are you ready?”. Let’s do this.
WWE RAW: The Men
AJ Styles: AJ Styles is a big name that can work with anyone and be used in almost any position on the card. Definitely a keeper.
Akira Tozawa: I like Tozawa and he’s a good performer, but unfortunately, he’s been turned into a 24/7 comedy figure over the past few years and is hard to take seriously now. He’s gone.
Angelo Dawkins: A solid and strong performer who has developed into a good tag team wrestler. He’s safe.
Austin Theory: Obviously not one of Triple H’s favorite characters on the roster, but he’s got a good look, works well, and just has that face you want to punch. He’s on the path to a solid career and role as a top guy. He stays.
Baron Corbin: Corbin is kind of hit or miss. I like him and he rarely fails to deliver in that ring, but the constant changing of characters hurts him. I’d keep him and with this new variation, being managed by JBL, wait to see how it goes before making any final decisions. He’s safe for now though.
Bobby Lashley: Bobby is solid, can be a monster or a heel, and has a few more years left in his career. He’s safe.
Brock Lesnar: It’s Brock Lesnar. He’s safe.
Cedric Alexander: I like Cedric and he’s a damn good performer, but he’s been played like a yo-yo for so long by the WWE, can he be taken seriously as a top star? He’s gone.
Chad Gable: A good wrestler, a great talker, and a man with legit Olympic credentials. And with that whole “Shoosh” thing, he’s a guy the fans love to hate. He’s safe.
Cody Rhodes: Just for that match with the torn pec, Cody proved that he is a guy who will go above and beyond. Wrestling needs more men like Cody Rhodes. And he’s Dusty’s son. Of course, he stays.
Damian Priest: He has all the makings of a big star and the current packaging as part of the Judgement Day is working well for Priest. He’s safe.
Dexter Lumis: I’m very curious and interested to see where this current program with The Miz is going, plus this guy impressed me down in NXT. He’s safe.
Dolph Ziggler: I like Dolph and he’s a great performer, a great talker, and everything you would want in a WWE Superstar. But honestly, when was the last time he was relevant? Maybe with a reboot and some tweaking, he could be saved, but I’d probably either make him a special attraction or just let him go.
Dominik Mysterio: The kid has potential and I’m intrigued to see what he can do and where he can go. He stays.
Edge: Edge’s return has not impressed me in the slightest and I’m not sure if it was the right call for the Rated-R superstar. I’d move him to a Legend’s Deal and use him for special occasions, but as a full-time member of the active roster, I don’t think so.
Elias: He was over and then he was gone and now, he’s just kind of there. I like him personally, but I don’t see any big money or future for him. He’s gone.
Finn Bálor: Six months ago, I honestly would have given him the boot, but the creation of The Judgement Day seems to have really inspired Balor and woken something up that was missing. He’s safe.
Gable Steveson: He was signed, announced, and then absolutely nothing. Stick him in the developmental program at the Performance Center and we’ll check back in six months. But as for being a part of the main roster, right now it would be no. He’s gone.
Johnny Gargano: He’s a favorite of HHH and is a solid worker who can do anything and do it well. He’s safe.
Karl Anderson: A recent return to the WWE roster and he, along with Gallows, is a solid and credible tag team that does nothing, but add to the product. They’re both safe.
Kevin Owens: He’s a Prize Fighter. Owens is safe.
Logan Paul: Before the match in Saudi Arabia, I would have said to let him go, but that match was impressive and he did far better than he had any right to do, plus he got injured halfway through and finished the match. He’s absolutely a keeper.
Luke Gallows: Look at what I said about Karl Anderson. Very safe.
Matt Riddle: The goofiness gets to me sometimes, but from all reports, that’s who he really is. He’s legit and credible and can go in that ring as well as anyone and far better than most. He’s safe.
The Miz: The Miz is the ultimate utility player. He can work with anyone, do anything, and looks good in the process. And he can make anyone else look good as well. He’s definitely a keeper.
Montez Ford: A solid tag team performer who has one of the best frog splashes in the business. He’s safe.
Mustafa Ali: A good wrestler with a good look. He wasn’t used well as part of the Vince era, but things seem to be picking up a bit. I’d keep him.
Omos: He still has a long way to go, but the match from Crown Jewel with Braun Strowman was not bad at all and Omos is getting better. I’d keep him and see if the improvement continues. If he continues to improve, he becomes the resident monster and gets a push. If he doesn’t get better, he’s gone.
Otis: I like him and he’s good at serious or comedy. He’s safe.
Randy Orton: Orton is a once-in-a-lifetime talent and so long as he wants a job with the WWE, I’d do my best to make sure he has it. If the back injuries don’t get better, then use him as an agent, an Ambassador, and find a role for him. He’s Randy Orton. He’s safe.
Reggie: The man is talented, but he doesn’t even have a last name. He also would not have a job. He’s gone.
Robert Roode: Roode has been out with an injury, but seems ready to make a return. He’s a good and solid worker but was lost in the shuffle in the Vince era. I think he might have a strong future under HHH. He stays and it is absolutely glorious!
R-Truth: With this recent injury, I think Truth’s in-ring career and options may be limited. But a guy this good can not be ignored or thrown away. Use him as an agent, a member of Creative, an Ambassador, or anything. Just keep him. He’s safe.
Seth “Freakin” Rollins: No explanation needed. He’s safe.
Shelton Benjamin: I like Shelton and he’s an amazing talent, but his best days are behind him and WWE has used him badly for so long, I can’t justify him wrestling on TV very often. I’m sure he’d make a great agent so I’d move him to behind-the-scenes with only occasional appearances. If he’s not good with that, he’s gone.
Tommaso Ciampa: He’s currently out with injuries, but he’s a good performer, a good talker, and a strong talent. He’s a keeper.
And there you go, my analysis of the men of WWE RAW and if they should be kept on the roster or cut loose to explore other options. Coming up next, are the Women of WWE Raw, so keep an eye out.
And with that, it’s time to close up shop for a bit. My thanks for reading. Any comments, thoughts, or questions are welcome and appreciated. Until the next time, take care and be safe, my friends. I’ll see you at the matches.