2004 WWE draft lottery
The 2004 World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) draft lottery took place at the Joe Louis Arena in Detroit, Michigan on March 22, 2004. The draft took place live for two hours on WWE's flagship television program, Raw on Spike TV. Post-draft trades were announced on WWE's official website, WWE.com, until midnight on March 22, 2004. There were twelve draft picks, with nineteen superstars overall switching between the promotion's two brands: Raw and SmackDown!. During the draft lottery, the General manager of Raw, Eric Bischoff, and the General manager of SmackDown!, Paul Heyman, stood on opposite ends of the stage on the Raw set, where they drafted six superstars randomly via two machines. At the conclusion of the draft, the two GMs would then be allowed to trade anyone on the roster until Midnight EST, which was later extended until Tuesday night after Heyman resigned. Every WWE employee was eligible to be drafted, including injured superstars, commentators, champions, and general managers.
The tagline for WrestleMania XX (that year's WrestleMania), was Where it all begins again. To remain with the tagline, on the March 15, 2004 episode of Raw, the chairman of WWE, Vince McMahon, announced that it was time "for a new WWE" and that a draft lottery would take place the following week on Raw. Both Raw and SmackDown! superstars would be present for the draft lottery, as McMahon announced that every superstar was eligible to be drafted, including commentators, ring announcers, referees, injured superstars, champions and even GM.
|Pick #||Brand (to)||Employee
|2||Raw||Shelton Benjamin||Male wrestler||SmackDown!|
|3||SmackDown!||Mark Jindrak||Male wrestler||Raw|
|7||SmackDown!||Rob Van Dam
|12||Raw||Paul Heyman2||General manager||SmackDown!|
|Pick #||Brand (to)||Employee
Bubba Ray and D-Von Dudley
(Mark LoMonaco and Devon Hughes)
|Male wrestler and Diva||Raw|
- 1 – Triple H was traded back to Raw prior to his redebut on the SmackDown! brand.
- 2 – Heyman resigned prior to his first appearance on the Raw brand.
After Paul Heyman was drafted from the SmackDown! brand to the Raw brand, he kayfabe quit the WWE, thus leaving the SmackDown! brand without a General manager. Shortly after the draft, the WWE Chairman, Vince McMahon announced that a new General manager had been appointed to the SmackDown! brand, and that he would conduct the supplemental trades with Raw General Manager, Eric Bischoff. On the March 25, 2004 episode of SmackDown!, Kurt Angle came down to the ring and announced that he was the new SmackDown! General manager.
- Tylwalk, Nick. "RAW:Draft day an unpredictable night". Canoe:SLAM Wrestling. Retrieved 2008-05-25.
- "The 2004 WWE Draft Lottery". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2004-04-25. Retrieved 2008-05-25.
- "WWE 2004 Draft Lottery". Online World of Wrestling. Archived from the original on 2 July 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-25.
- Powell, John. "WrestleMania bombs". SLAM! Sports. Retrieved 2008-05-25.
- "Raw/Draft Results March 22, 2004". A career changing night. 2004-03-24. Archived from the original on 2004-04-11.
- "A Career Changing Night: RAW Results March 22, 2004". 2004-05-24. Archived from the original on 2004-04-11.
- "WWE SmackDown! (March 25, 2004) Results". Online World of Wrestling. Archived from the original on 21 June 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-25.
- "WWE SmackDown! (March 25, 2004) Results". PWWEW.net. Retrieved 2008-05-25.