Previously on the Best and Worst of WWE Smackdown Live: Kofi Kingston became a cult hero by spending almost an hour in a gauntlet match, pinning the WWE Champion, and then almost winning the WWE Championship inside the Elimination Chamber.
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And now, here’s the Best and Worst of WWE Smackdown Live for February 19, 2019.
Best/Worst: The Same Thing As Raw, But Better
If you read this week’s Raw report (and it’s highly recommended that you do, especially if you hate yourself), you read my reactions to WWE bringing the “four best guys” from NXT on a throw-everything-at-the-wall whim, putting them over Raw stars with little to no explanation, and compromising the past year of NXT stories and TV by not paying any real attention to character motivation or consistency. It’s hard for me to even recap it in a paragraph like this without typing AND FURTHERMORE~.
Smackdown did the same thing, but the situation was greatly improved by a few factors:
- the New Orleans crowd was much, much better than the Lafayette crowd, due in part to the fact that NXT has actually run a big show there, and the local fans are presumably more familiar with the talent (and/or they’re just enjoying themselves and not sitting on their hands like the small town crowd)
- Smackdown paired at least two of the four with opponents they know from NXT, which allows us to actually integrate these appearances into their character histories
- they didn’t put these new, unexplained-to-the-WWE-Universe stars over their show’s champions
- we’d already seen all four on Raw, so the “wait, what are we doing” shock/surprise was lessened and, at least to me, the whole thing was easier to swallow