WWE Battle of the Brands: Raw vs. SmackDown - Best Show of the Week (September 24-25, 2018) | Smark Out Moment
Welcome to another edition of Battle of the Brands from Smark Out Moment, where we compare this week's episodes of Raw and SmackDown and determine which one of the two was the better show.

WWE Monday Night Raw - September 24, 2018 - Pepsi Center in Denver, CO
WWE SmackDown - September 25, 2018 – Pepsi Center in Denver, CO

which WWE TV show was better this week Raw vs SmackDown

BATTLE OF THE BRANDS:

RAW vs. SMACKDOWN


FACTOR 1: CROWD

It's quite difficult to call which crowd was best this week as both Raw and SmackDown emanated from the Pepsi Center in Denver, so it is highly likely that most of the people there were in attendance for both shows. Both nights had good audiences as well, who seemed engaged with the vast majority of the show.

If I have to pick a winner, I guess I'd take Raw because I was surprised how switched on the fans were for the main event six-man tag, considering how bogged down they must have been during many of the show's meaningless segments. However, props to the SmackDown brigade for getting a 'Milwaukee' chant over.

WINNER: Raw

FACTOR 2: COMMENTARY

I feel compelled to once again give the point to Raw on this occasion because, while their commentary was far from memorable and pretty much business as usual throughout, they weren't burdened by the appearance of the Iconics for one segment. I know some people like their impressions and grating heel work - I am not one of them.

WINNER: Raw

FACTOR 3: MATCHES

This is another tough call, as Raw undoubtedly had the two strongest matches of the week, with the main event six-man tag and the awesome Raw Tag Team Championship match. Surrounding that though were some real stinkers like Chad Gable vs Konnor, Nia Jax vs Alicia Fox and Bobby Lashley vs Elias, not to mention Brie Bella going full Bruce Lee on Liv Morgan's face.

Meanwhile on SmackDown, the match quality was more consistent, but nothing came close to matching the best of Raw's clashes this week. The Miz vs R-Truth, Big E vs Sheamus, the women's tag team match and Shinsuke Nakamura vs Tye Dillinger were all fun, but nothing stood out. On that basis, Raw takes another point.

WINNER: Raw

FACTOR 4: PROMOS

Again it's a close call, but SmackDown get on the board with some excellent promo performances throughout the night. I felt The Miz, R-Truth, Carmella, Aiden English, Lana, Becky Lynch and Samoa Joe all delivered great promos that progressed their stories and built intrigue for the following week.

Meanwhile on Raw, as much as it pains me to admit it, Dolph Ziggler was the star of the show on the microphone, calling back to previous stories with Dean Ambrose and planting seeds for a potential breakup of The Shield. Strong stuff, but it doesn't take away from other less than stellar promo work, which was either poor quality or really wasn't consequential.

WINNER: SmackDown

FACTOR 5: STORYLINES

While I consider Raw to have had the stronger lead storyline that spanned across the three hours, it was the only standout mixed with a lot of dross. Essentially, anything of consequence on Raw at the moment involves The Shield or The Dogs of War, and everything else just feels like filler. There was no Ronda Rousey, no Brock Lesnar, and only passing reference to the Undertaker/Triple H match.

SmackDown's storyline progression felt a lot more universal. From the continued build to Daniel Bryan and The Miz's latest clash, to Becky Lynch's domination of the women's division, mixed with the Rusev/Lana/Aiden English triangle and the Samoa Joe home invasion angle, SmackDown had developments throughout.

WINNER: SmackDown

FACTOR 6: SCHEDULING / PACING

Raw did a very good job weaving the story of Dean Ambrose's relationship with The Shield from the start of the show to its conclusion. But, I don't know if I can award a win for pacing based solely on that, epsecially when a full quarter of the show is a strictly non-kayfabe charity announcement for Connor's Cure, rather than any storyline work.

SmackDown didn't have a single arching story across the night but a few working simultaneously. None of these individually was better than the inner turmoil brewing in The Shield, but it was more consistently delivered and fresh.

WINNER: SmackDown

FACTOR 7: VISUAL PRESENTATION

Once again SmackDown gets the nod in the visual presentation department just due to the greater variety of sets and location - a contract signing, video packages, backstage segments, Truth TV. Raw pretty much offered the same presentation throughout, leaving the talent to work on fixing any issues.

WINNER: SmackDown

EXTRA CREDIT BONUS ROUND!!!

After I've immediately been proven wrong about the Rusev/Aiden English feud being an unmitigated disaster, I think it's only fair that SmackDown regains one of the points I took away from last week's score.

Meanwhile for Raw, even though this is not the shows fault entirely, I feel compelled to drop points for Brie Bella's injuring of Liv Morgan in a six-woman tag - one point for the botch being easily avoidable and implemented far safer, and another point for WWE's team backstage not cancelling the match due to injury immediately.

POINT ADJUSTMENTS: Raw (+0 / -2) / SmackDown (+1 / -0)


THIS WEEK'S WINNER = SmackDown

I felt SmackDown was bar far the more consistently entertaining show this week, with impressive character and storyline development. Raw definitely had its moments and was far from as bad as recent weeks have been, but still falls behind SmackDown in terms of overall quality and stability.

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!



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THIS POST WRITTEN BY: CALLUM WIGGINS

Callum Wiggins hails from Essex in the United Kingdom. He recently graduated from the University of York with a degree in History and has been a fan of professional wrestling since 2002. Outside of wrestling, he is also a fan of Arsenal FC and enjoys video games, darts, and Formula One. You can follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Google+.

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