After the McMahon family shook things up on Raw last month with a game-changing announcement, the pieces started to fall into place when it was confirmed that six NXT standouts would be arriving to the Raw and SmackDown LIVE brands.
Among the fresh new faces are Heavy Machinery (Tucker Knight and Otis Dozovic), EC3, Lacey Evans, Nikki Cross, and the previously-announced Lars Sullivan.
Cross worked this past week’s SmackDown house show loop, whereas EC3 and Evans worked dark matches before Raw in Orlando, Florida. Heavy Machinery also got some ring time as they beat The Colons in a dark match after SmackDown LIVE went off the air in Jacksonville, Florida.
Sullivan was supposed to wrestle as well. According to John Pollock of POST Wrestling, EC3 replaced Sullivan in the dark match against Hawkins. Sullivan was then scheduled to wrestle a dark match at SmackDown LIVE, but that got canceled too. Pollock could not confirm why WWE held off Sullivan from wrestling.
Bryan Alvarez also noted on Wrestling Observer Live (h/t Ringside News) today that Sullivan was supposed to wrestle this week.
“Lars Sullivan was supposed to appear on Raw Monday and he wasn’t there and then he was supposed to appear on SmackDown Tuesday and he wasn’t there. Now, I have no idea what that means. I have no idea what his future is. I just know he was supposed to be on both of those shows, but he wasn’t there,” Alvarez said.
Nonetheless, WWE has big plans in store for Sullivan. According to Alvarez, his push is supposed to lead to a “very big match” at WrestleMania 35.
“He was earmarked for a very big match at WrestleMania and maybe we’ll know more on Monday, maybe we’ll know more on Tuesday, maybe the Rumble. I don’t know, all I know is he was supposed to be at both shows and he was not there,” Alvarez said.
Alvarez did not say who WWE has in mind for his opponent.
WWE continued to hype Sullivan’s debut this week on Raw and SmackDown LIVE with the same vignette that has been airing for weeks. WWE has yet to confirm a start date or brand for him or any of the other five.