Match Ratings For WWE Smackdown Live 7/23/19 From Sean Ross Sapp

Shane and Owens

  • David Otunga is on commentary, and joined by New Day. If you can't do a 3 person booth, go with four apparently.
  • Shane McMahon comes out and wastes a lot of time cutting a promo, but at least Greg Hamilton was good.
  • It takes about 7 minutes into the show before anything happens. He plays footage of Kevin Owens saying that he was going to quit last year.
  • Kevin Owens comes out and says that was his lowest point, and he's ready to kick Shane McMahon's ass.
  • Shane says he's got a fight for Kevin Owens -- Roman Reigns. Well, that's an interesting one at least. A legit main event.
  • Elias and Drew McIntyre are backstage kissing Shane McMahon's ass and calling him a genius. He names Drew McIntyre special ref and Elias special timekeeper, and himself special ring announcer.
Drew McIntyre Credits Cedric Alexander For Taking The Best Bump Off The Claymore Kick

Shinsuke Nakamura defeated Apollo Crews

  • Apollo does a great delayed vertical suplex that New Day puts over big time. This is one of the best jobs at putting over on commentary I've seen in a while. Tom Phillips' reaction to Xavier was great, too.
  • A moonsault to the outside from Apollo excites New Day, too.
  • Nakamura gains control during the break, but Apollo fights back and does a good Samoan drop.
  • I'm glad Nakamura is doing the sliding German Suplex again, but I think it should be saved for more rare opportunities.
  • New Day sold me a ticket on the Olympic Slam from Apollo. Their energy on the nearfall was amazing.
  • Nakamura hits a Kinshasa after Apollo misses a standing moonsault.
  • This was very good.
  • Nakamura attacks Apollo Crews after the match, and New Day doesn't bother helping.

Backstage Crappenings

  • Mandy tells Sonya backstage they have a match against the tag champions for a shot at the titles. I guess because there's no contenders.
  • We see a new Ali promo. He's got really good presence and his own voice. That's very, very important.


  • Miz is reduced to a babyface mascot these days, which isn't necessarily a bad thing considering how a lot of people are booked.
  • Shawn Michaels is brought out. He was supposed to be on commentary
  • I wouldn't want New Day on commentary every week, but I've enjoyed it a lot tonight.
  • I forgot that Miz isn't even on Smackdown. He hasn't worked a house show since May, which is odd.
  • Dolph Ziggler comes out and says that Shawn Michaels broke his heart last November when he came back to the ring and that HBK was embarrassing at Crown Jewel.
  • Michaels says he'll admit that it was embarrassing. But not as embarrassing as being known as a second rate Shawn Michaels wannabe.
  • Miz is ready to fight Ziggler, but gets hit, and Ziggler superkicks Michaels.
  • I thought this was an excellent angle.

Ember Moon defeated Charlotte Flair

  • Bayley comes out during the match. Why would the person who hits the music do that?
  • Ember Moon rolls up Charlotte Flair for the win.
  • Ember throws Bayley to Charlotte Flair, then hits Charlotte with the Eclipse. Bayley eats one, too.
  • This made Charlotte look like a dumbass, but at least Ember looked great.
  • This was an edge we've never seen out of Ember.


  • Kofi Kingston says he wants to challenge Randy Orton and hopes to face him at Summerslam.
  • He brings up beating Orton's ass in Madison Square Garden.
  • Kofi says Orton made sure that Kofi would never reach the main event scene again, but he can't make it happen anymore.
  • Orton admits he was holding Kofi back and says he was doing him a favor. He's not ready and the title is a fluke.
  • Orton says he just had to be himself, not fake an accent, throw pancakes or shake his ass.
  • Orton says he injured Ali, and that's the only reason Kofi got a chance.
  • Orton accepts. This promo was fantastic.

Kofi Kingston defeated Samoa Joe via DQ.

  • Samoa Joe is out here again, ready to eat that L.
  • Joe controls the majority of the match until we get to a commercial break. Kofi takes over after.
  • Orton interferes for the DQ.
  • Orton RKOs Joe, and eats a Trouble in Paradise. Kofi looks strong again.
  • I probably wouldn't have had Kofi eat a pin from Ziggler, but he's been booked so well since February.

Summerslam Challenge

  • Balor is out to address Bray Wyatt.
  • Balor challenges him to a match at Summerslam.
  • Firefly Funhouse appears on the screen to a nice pop. "The Fiend" accepts Balor's challenge.
  • This is one of the better Firefly Funhouses, because it's live, more interactive and different.
  • The promo work on tonight's Smackdown Live has been off the charts.


Kevin Owens vs. Roman Reigns
Special Guest Referee: Drew McIntyre
Special Timekeeper: Elias
Special Announcer: Shane McMahon

  • Roman Reigns isn't happy that Kevin Owens says he's gonna run through him. 
  • Roman Reigns throws Drew out, and Kevin Owens attacks Elias.
  • They corner Shane but are overcome. That doesn't last. The babyfaces rule to end the show. 
  • Owens does a Stunner to end the show. 
  • This was good I guess, but why do we even need to see Shane vs. Owens now? Owens has beaten Shane's ass a bunch already.
  • You can tell that Shane McMahon was looking to make up for that Stunner botch from last week, and it seems like he did it well.

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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