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WWE News: SmackDown Live Rating Takes A Drop, Still Ranked #1 (8/7/18)

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For four straight weeks now, WWE’s SmackDown Live has steadily increased its viewership as we inch closer and closer to SummerSlam on August 19th. Despite this, the blue brand has yet to catch up with Monday Night RAW’s ratings, even on weeks when fans mostly believe SmackDown Live has been the better show. Did this week offer the same results?

Unfortunately, the answer is, “No”. This week’s episode of SmackDown Live came down to a 2.197, a decrease of 8.49% and as stated, the first time in a month where the rating did not move upward. Here’s a look at the last four weeks of ratings for the blue brand:

  • July 17th: 2.293
  • July 24th: 2.340
  • July 31st: 2.401
  • August 7th: 2.197

However, SmackDown Live has maintained its hold on the number one spot in the Cable Top 150 Rankings for the 18-49 demographic for the second straight week:

  1. SmackDown Live – USA Network – 0.73
  2. Below Deck Mediterranean – Bravo – 0.54
  3. Miz & Mrs – USA Network – 0.47
  4. Animal Kingdom – TNT – 0.44
  5. The Challenge: Final Reckoning – MTV – 0.41

Source: Showbuzz Daily

EA’s Take: I have to be honest here, I’m a big fan of the blue brand on a weekly basis, but this week felt lackluster to me. At this point, it feels as if we’re just killing time until SummerSlam. The main event of The New Day vs. The Bar was tremendously entertaining, but as we all know by now, the masses don’t tune in for the in-ring product. None of SmackDown Live’s biggest stars were in action this week (unless you want to make a case for Shinsuke Nakamura), as Jeff Hardy, Randy Orton, AJ Styles, The Miz, Daniel Bryan…none of them wrestled. We got a rematch from last week with Lana vs. Zelina Vega (another rough outing) and the aforementioned Nakamura taking on R-Truth, in addition to Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair vs. The IIconics. Real big lineup, right? Ultimately, with no real big name matches advertised ahead of time, there wasn’t much reason to tune into SmackDown Live this week. With next week being the go-home show for SummerSlam, I’d expect that in itself to increase the rating much as I think it will for RAW.

 

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SummerSlam Results: Universal Championship

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With Ronda Rousey winning the RAW Women’s Title in dominating fashion, it was now time for the main event at SummerSlam as Roman Reigns once again had his sights set on Brock Lesnar’s Universal Championship.

With the time for talking and heinous tactics involving pepper spray finally over, ‘The Big Dog’ seemed more focused than ever before after numerous failed attempts to defeat Lesnar this year and in year’s past. Just as the bell was about to ring though, Braun Strowman would march down to the ring and calling for a mic to announce that he would be cashing in his Money In The Bank contract after the match is over to face the winner.

As the bell rang, Reigns would connect with a trifecta of Superman Punches, quickly following with two straight Spears before measuring for a third. Lesnar would catch ‘The Big Dog’ with a guillotine on the third attempt trying for a tap-out, Roman powering to his feet and delivering a spinebuster to break it, but getting caught back in the guillotine again. Reigns would muscle up once again to break out with a spinebuster and with both men struggling back to their feet, ‘The Beast Incarnate’ would plant the challenger with multiple German suplexes.

The champion would go for an F5 that Roman would slip out of and measure for a Spear, Brock with a side-step to send Reigns to the outside, taking out Strowman in the process. Lesnar would look to damage Braun while retrieving the challenger, dropping him with an F5 on the floor, tossing the briefcase up the ramp and decimating ‘The Monster Among Men’ with a steel chair. As Brock slid back inside, Reigns would catch him with a Spear, hook the leg and win the Universal Title.

 

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SummerSlam Results: RAW Women’s Championship

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Only two matches remained at SummerSlam following the United States Championship match and first up, it was time for Ronda Rousey to try and exact some revenge on Alexa Bliss with the RAW Women’s Title on the line.

Of course, ‘Little Miss Bliss’ effectively stole the title back at Money In The Bank, leading to Ronda getting suspended from Monday Night RAW for 30 days and having to wait to kick Alexa’s “pink-haired ass”. With Natalya in her corner, Rousey entered the ring with purpose with Bliss looking to stay away right at the bell. One right hand from the challenger quickly stunned Alexa and sent her stumbling to the outside, the champion looking towards the entrance as if she was ready to leave. Rousey didn’t want that and proceeded to give Bliss the ring, sitting down and allowing her to put on a rear chinlock, which had zero affect whatsoever.

‘Rowdy’ Ronda would power to her feet and plant ‘Little Miss Bliss’ with a spinning Samoan drop, once again sending Alexa to the floor for a breather. This time around Ronda would give chase and get baited back into the ring, but a couple of shots by the champion did nothing other than piss Rousey off who would unload with lefts and rights, followed by multiple throws. Another spinning Samoan Drop left Bliss seemingly for dead with Ronda asking the crowd if it was time to finish it, twisting away at the left arm for the quick tap-out to win the championship.

 

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SummerSlam Results: United States Championship

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With the return of ‘The Demon King’ Finn Balor, the next contest at SummerSlam featured another Superstar sporting face-paint as Jeff Hardy challenged Shinsuke Nakamura for the United States Title after losing it last month at Extreme Rules.

For Hardy, he had to try and put all the attacks by Randy Orton out of his mind if he was to regain the US Championship. Nakamura, who has become a master of mind games since WrestleMania, saw ‘The Charismatic Engima’ return the favor by mocking the champion to take him out of his game. It wouldn’t last for long however, as ‘The Artist’ would quickly take back control with his trademark heavy striking offense before grounding the challenger.

After working back to a vertical base, Hardy would begin to pick the pace up to what he prefers, building off signature Hardy offense before it was stopped by more heavy kicks from the champion. A missed knee in the corner would allow the challenger to connect with Whisper In The Wind for a near fall, followed by a failed attempt to go upstairs for the Swanton Bomb. As Shinsuke lined up for the Kinshasa, Hardy would side-step it for the Twist Of Fate, which then was countered as Nakamura attempted a low blow. ‘The Charismatic Enigma’ would see it coming, deliver the Twist Of Fate and score with a Swanton Bomb, however ‘The Artist’ was too close to the ropes.

The challenger was ready to finish it, hitting another Twist Of Fate and going to the top turnbuckle once more, but Shinsuke would roll to the apron thinking he was safe. Hardy would turn his crosshairs for a Swanton on the apron that missed the mark, giving Nakamura the opening to hit the Kinshasa to retain. It was at this point that Randy Orton smelled blood and made his way to the squared circle, but then seemingly changed his mind and walked to the back.

 

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