WWE has officially unveiled the rules to its upcoming brand-extension draft, which takes place Tuesday July 19.
The rules for Tuesday’s draft are as follows (per WWE.com):
- Raw gets the No. 1 overall pick
- Because SmackDown is a two-hour program and Raw is three hours, for every two picks SmackDown gets, Raw will get three picks
- Tag teams count as one pick unless the general manager specifically states they only wants one member of the team
- NXT Superstars will be up for grabs, though only six picks will be made from the developmental roster
It appears as though all members of the WWE roster, including a currently suspended Roman Reigns and part-time Superstar Brock Lesnar, will be up for grabs come Tuesday night.
The company also went ahead and listed WWE World Heavyweight Champion Dean Ambrose as a potential pick, choosing not to clarify what approach the organization will take in handling its top champion. Previous iterations of a brand split have seen two world heavyweight championships created, one for each show. Others, meanwhile, have had the WWE World Heavyweight Champion appear on both shows.
As noted, Tuesday marks the start of a new era for WWE’s blue brand, now allowing fans to watch the program live on Tuesdays, rather than a taped and edited version aired on Thursday.
WWE first announced plans for a brand extension in late May, as the company looks to both make use of its deep roster and bring more eyes to its long-struggling SmackDown program.