Match Ratings For WWE Smackdown Live 5/14/19, Podcast Notes From Sean Ross Sapp

Opening Segment

  • Roman Reigns brings out The Miz, who sings a shitty, corny version of Wonderwall.
  • Miz isn't getting any reaction for his babyface promos.
  • Shane McMahon comes out and says that Miz is banned from the arena tonight.
  • Elias trashes Roman Reigns, and they pretend like they're gonna go after the babyfaces. Shane brings out Rowan and Daniel Bryan.
  • This is really bad, 1989 booking. Fortunately, the Usos coming out and saving Roman Reigns gives me hope. They run off all the heels.
  • Usos and Reigns should have been put together a long time ago. It's the best opportunity to freshen up Reigns.
  • Backstage, Daniel Bryan makes a 4-on-3 handicap match for tonight. Miz is out.
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Andrade (w/ Zelina) defeated Finn Balor, Ali & Randy Orton

  • Randy Orton cuts a little promo, and the match gets started DURING THE COMMERCIAL BREAK. Why?
  • Mustafa Ali and Randy Orton are paired up pretty heavily in the early going of the match, which is a nice combination that we haven't seen done to death.
  • Ali fakes out an RKO to hit a tornado DDT.
  • Balor and Andrade go at it, and Andrade brings out a ladder, because why not? Well, because Ali body presses him.
  • We get back from a commercial to see everything going wild. Balor sent into a ladder.
  • Everyone gets a little offense in, and Mustafa Ali misses a 450 just to roll into an RKO.
  • Tope con hilo onto the pile from Balor!
  • Andrade runs Balor into the stairs and wins with the Hammerlock DDT. Another champion pinned.
  • 2019 Randy Orton is the best Orton I've seen in a long time.
  • Andrade climbs the ladder, but Ricochet shows up and springboards out. That's your use of a wild card.

Backstage Crappenings

  • Carmella cuts a nice selfie promo about Money in the Bank. Ember Moon and Bayley each do the same, respectively.
  • Aleister Black is MOODY AGAIN.
  • I remember 80 minutes ago when they said "all new Firefly Funhouse."
    But it's not. It's the same thing they showed last night. As if there's some huge audience who wasn't watching last night.
  • Lars intimidates Kayla Braxton, who just walks away.

Charlotte Flair and Lacey

  • Charlotte says her story with Becky Lynch will end, then throws to a video.
  • That shit is so awkward. Stop making them do it.
  • This runs down their history.
  • Lacey is backstage and cuts a promo in a very well lit locker room about Money in the Bank Sunday.

Shane McMahon, Daniel Bryan, Rowan, & Elias defeated Super Samoan Smash Cousins

  • Jey Uso gets worked over big time by the heels. The same happens with Jimmy, but it's a lot of cheap heel work.
  • Reigns tags in and goes after Daniel Bryan.
  • Elias connects with a great knee to Reigns, but this isn't a great match.
  • I'm not sure how or why anyone is supposed to care about Shane and Pals working random tag team matches to build up to other matches with no stakes. Bryan and Rowan have no real juice in this match. Maybe the Usos do since they're a tag team -- but they're a tag team on Raw.
  • Jimmy Uso sends superkicks all around, and Jey helps out as well, but Shane McMahon ends up breaking up the pin.
  • Elias Drift Away, Jimmy Superkick, Daniel Bryan Knee, but Reigns stops that, only to get clotheslined out by Rowan.
  • Reigns follows with a Superman punch off stairs on Rowan.
  • Shane can't quite get the Coast to Coast like he used to, but it wins the match.
  • Brand split means nothing. At least to the one guy who made the decision to bring it back. The Usos get a title shot this weekend. Good thing the Usos won that match that just happened that way them competing for the tag titles makes sense. But wait, no. It's not a title match. Jesus.

Kabuki Warriors (w/ Paige) defeated Fire & Desire

  • Paige introduces THE KABUKI WARRIORS. It doesn't get over.
  • Fire & Desire come out to talk some trash. At least they're doing women's tag matches.
  • That being said, there's a lot of miscommunication early.
  • IIconics are on commentary.
  • We come back to see Kairi slapping the shit out of Mandy.
  • Kairi plays face in peril until Asuka cleans house.
  • Fire & Desire are a really good heel team.
  • Sonya Deville consistently has some of the best gear in wrestling, and a good spinebuster, too.
  • Mandy Rose demands the tag and gets crucifixed.
  • The Kabuki Warriors mashup theme is lazy.


  • Kofi Kingston tells Xavier Woods he wants to handle this business himself.
  • Kevin Owens says he's going to break Kofi Kingston's back at Money in the Bank.
  • Kofi interrupts Kevin's backstage promo, which I'm not sure why was happening back there.
  • Kofi intros Kevin Owens, but the crowd wants the Kofi show.
  • Video packages are nice, but WWE delivers them in a corny way and has talent utilize them and toss to them in a really forced manner.
  • Owens comes out, then just walks away.....then walks back....then walks away.
  • Kofi brings the fight to Owens and they brawl in the aisle. Sami Zayn shows up.
  • Xavier tries to make the save, but it doesn't work out very well. New Day get their asses kicked.
  • Kofi battles back and hits Sami with Trouble in Paradise.
  • This convoluted Wild Card rule is really diminishing the quality of WWE programming for me. It's Vince McMahon's cheap excuse to to things that don't make sense and have no continuity week-to-week

Rating guide

10- Perfect, 9- MOTY Territory, 8- Excellent, 7- Great, 6- Good, 5- Average to above average, 4- Slightly below average, 3 or below: Poor

Each match starts at a 5 and slides up and down based on entertainment, execution, time, environment, reaction and stakes. The ratings are in no way an indication of a "star rating," which is a completely different system. A standard, non-offensive "TV match" lands at a 5.The gap between 5.75-6 is generally the largest, with anything reaching 6 being recommended viewing.
These are opinions, and incredibly inconsistent ones. Don't take them too seriously, and have (and share) your own!

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