10/16 WWE Smackdown 1000 On-Site Report: What were the crowd reactions to McMahons, legends vs. current stars, off-camera happenings, 205 Live notes, Crown Jewel boos, Rock Tweet


OCTOBER 16, 2018

If you attend a live event, please send results in the format of the following report to pwtorch@pwtorch.com. Thanks!

-It was actually a super-fun show and one of the best times I’ve had at a show in a long time.

-The arena was packed. There were probably 100 seats tarped off around the hard camera and then what were blocked off by the set itself. There was one seat empty in my section and hard to see others around the venue.

-The most lasting memories will include that Becky Lynch could make fun of Edge having broken his neck and the crowd chanted for her. That was interesting. Also, the fact that Undertaker made his elaborate ring entrance, said ten words, and then stopped – people next to me asked, “That was it?” I haven’t seen the Undertaker in an arena in 20 years and that was a lot of build up for kind of nothing. Also, if the Batista-Triple H situation leads to a match later, I’ll remember that.

-There was a lot of booing in at least my section every time the Crown Jewel graphic came up. The arena itself didn’t seem to be excited about what as going on. The only time they didn’t boo was when they showed the A.J. Styles vs. Daniel Bryan graphic and when they showed Rey Mysterio, but every other time the Crown Jewel graphic was shown, they booed.

-It’s notable we are blocks from the White House. The audience was overwhelmingly adult. D.C. isn’t a very family area. People seemed to be aware and had a visceral reaction. I don’t see how they can run that event in Saudi Arabia at this point. They have to move it, right? They can’t not. I think it’s a disaster. I’m not getting paid $45 million so I guess I have a different viewpoint on things. I’m sure they have every reason to believe they can wait this out and ten years of contractual reasons to do it, but I think it’s really short-sighted if they do.

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-Nine out of ten nostalgia reactions were bigger than current stars. Vince McMahon got the biggest pop of the night. Shane McMahon was right there. After that, I think Edge got the biggest pop in the arena followed closely by when Jerry Lawler’s music played. The Evolution music got a pretty big response, probably because we didn’t expect it’d be so early. Of the current stars, it was Bryan, Styles, and Becky. What I thought was interesting is that it was twice as loud for Bryan than Styles when they came out one after another, but there were way more chants. When Styles came out, Stephanie pointed at him almost as if to say, “hey look at how great this guy is,” and I don’t think that went a real long way to getting him over.

-A guy sitting next to me brought his girlfriend to her first event and he had to explain to her what was going on. He told her, “Cheer for him, he’s the reason this has all happened.” During Vince’s entrance, R-Truth and Carmella were dancing to his theme music, which was pretty fun.

-People seemed to be really excited to see Batista because he hasn’t been around in so long and he is from D.C. People seemed to be with Batista overall.

-I thought it was weird that Randy Orton was suddenly back in a different character, sort of. He wasn’t the “I’m going to destroy everybody” guy and that was jarring to me because it wasn’t congruent with the story. Among the four in Evolution, the people were the least interested in Orton.

-Ric Flair really struggled to get into the ring physically and he struggled moving around. He had to be helped into the ring, and that was a little odd.

-During the collages on the big screen of Smackdown memories, anytime Eddie Guerrero was on the screen, he got the biggest reaction. I saw more Eddie Guerrero shirts than any other wrestler at the show. Even the same picture several times got cheers. When Edge mentioned him, that also got a big cheer. The one photo of Steve Austin and Kurt Angle with the cowboy hats on got a big pop, too. That was in Baltimore and I think I might have been at that show.

-When The Rock Tweet was shown and John Cena selfie video was shown, people realized they wouldn’t be there in person. People were more interested in The Rock Tweet than Cena. People looked away when Cena’s video played. The Rock Tweet people were laughing and enjoying themselves.

-Regarding Rey Mysterio vs. Shinsuke Nakamura, I thought it was a little flat when it was over. Rey got a huge pop when came out. But Shinsuke’s reaction was kind of equal. People were singing along with him and enjoying themselves. The match seemed like they were a step off, a little slow and flat. That’s not what I would have expected. The big moves all got a big response, but for a nine minute match, you’d think it’d be packed and full and exciting, but it was just kind of there. I felt let down by it.

-New Day was really over with the kids in the arena. There were 9-10 year old African-American kids in front of me and they were really excited and tried to run down to the floor. That was actually really neat to see. They were kind of middling excited about everything else and really excited about that. We can talk about how those role models look for them, but it was neat that they were that excited. I went to the last Smackdown in Baltimore after Backlash, and pancakes were way more over then than in D.C. at Smackdown 1000.

-The Big Show thing was very confusing. It was surprising when it happened, and people eventually figured it out. That was the longest selling of disbelief without doing anything that Big E could have done, staring out at Big Show while he was waiting to get Brogue Kicked from behind. People were into it because I think people expected a title change, and it was going to be The Bar winning the belts.

-We couldn’t tell when a match was at commercial. They didn’t do a whole lot of rest holds. That was notable to past TV tapings.

-The crowd was way into Becky overall. Before the event started, when fans “wooo’d,” that was booed. Fans were against Charlotte. I don’t think Charlotte is good on the mic; I don’t believe her when she talks. Tonight she was flat and you couldn’t really hear her. The people wanted to see Becky and were chanting for Becky. When she held the belt up in her face, fans were into it, but the momentum died when she came out.

-For 205 Live, it started about 40 minutes before Smackdown started. The arena was about 25 percent full, but I’d say 95 percent of the people knew exactly what was going on. People were actually into it. There was a five-man main event and Lio Rush was over huge because he’s from the area. People were pulling for him.

-Before the event, I don’t know if this is normal, but they told everyone “We’re going live on USA Network” and they took all the 205 Live stuff off the screen and everyone was supposed to cheer for a minute, and then 205 Live started. So they must’ve done that between episodes of “Modern Family.”

-After Smackdown, they announced that the main event would be Becky vs. Charlotte. It wasn’t the advertised main event, but everyone announced for the six-man tag match main event was actually on the show. I left to drive back to Baltimore before the match took place.

-They are selling Sting masks at the merch stand. That was weird.

If you attend a live event, please send results in the format of the following report to pwtorch@pwtorch.com. Thanks!

FOR FULL 205 LIVE RESULTS, CLICK HERE: 10/17 WWE 205 Live Report: Gulak vs. Tozawa, Fatal Five-way main event, and more

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