WWE Monday Night Raw - December 4, 2016 - Frank Erwin Center in Austin, TX
WWE SmackDown - December 5, 2016 – Toyota Center in Houston, TX
BATTLE OF THE BRANDS:
RAW vs. SMACKDOWN
FACTOR 1: CROWD
I really liked the SmackDown crowd over Raw's this week. When Miz handed Dean the participation award the crowd started a sarcastic "You deserve it!" chant much to Mizs' surprise. Mine too. I'm a huge fan of sarcasm and sarcastic remarks, so the SmackDown crowd takes home the W.
FACTOR 2: COMMENTARY
You know the deal here. I can't stand Byron Saxton in the slightest, and even though the SmackDown commentary situation isn't ideal with the four people, I still prefer them.
FACTOR 3: MATCHES
Both shows had solid matches this week. Two great mid-card title matches with Jericho vs. Reigns for the US Title, and Ambrose vs. Miz for the Intercontinental Championship. SmackDown also had a SmackDown Tag Team Championship match as well, which wasn't bad. Raw had two good Cruiserweight matches thrown in the mix as well as another solid fight between Zayn and Owens, so I'll give the edge to Raw.
FACTOR 4: PROMOS
This is where it gets difficult. Both shows had solid promos all throughout the night. Miz TV, Alexa's championship celebration, and AJ Styles opening promo were solid for SmackDown, and I'm loving anything and everything Kevin Owens and Chris Jericho do right now on Raw. Also, the Enzo Amore and Lana thing was a real "attitude era" style flashback of sorts. In a tough choice, Raw takes the win here.
FACTOR 5: STORYLINES
Monday Night Raw takes the win here. I love what they're doing with the Tag Team Championships on Raw making New Day defend nearly every week to earn that record they're going to break, and I couldn't be enthralled with the Kevin Owens and Chris Jericho storyline. We all knew it would implode eventually, and I can't wait to see what happens with it next week.
FACTOR 6: SCHEDULING / PACING
You know the deal here with me too. Two hours is so much better than three hours. Raw did that "Tussle in Texas" with Mark Henry and Titus O'Neil that lasted three seconds. I know its Marks hometown and all, but it felt like a needless "oh no we need three hours of stuff" time filler.
FACTOR 7: VISUAL PRESENTATION
Every week I generally say the same thing here. Its really difficult to separate the two brands when it comes to visual presentation as we were preparing for each show to have its own unique look. Which clearly didn't happen. One thing I really like about SmackDown is they really show off their entrances. They did a great job with Miz & Maryse this week, showing the overhead view of the stage and ramp as that electronic red carpet shot out during their entrances. They show off their superstar creativity a little more, and I like that.
EXTRA CREDIT BONUS ROUND!!!
No extra credit bonus this week.
POINT ADJUSTMENTS: Raw (+0 / -0) / SmackDown (+0 / -0)
THIS WEEK'S WINNER = SmackDown
Its not that I am not liking what Raw is doing every week. Because I love it. They are really going back to some old school stuff the last few weeks with Cesaro & Sheamus in the bar, and now Enzo & Lana with the hotel stuff. I just think that if Raw was two hours long, it would be a much better show. But SmackDown takes home another win in a 4-3 tally.
That's my pick for the better show of the week, but how do YOU stand?
Which was better, Raw or SmackDown?
Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!