Stephen A. Smith Will Make You Cringe As He Compares Rihanna To Beyoncé

Although the Rihanna vs. Beyoncé comparison might be a real thing among fans, it’s also an unspoken rule to just

Although the Rihanna vs. Beyoncé comparison might be a real thing among fans, it’s also an unspoken rule to just not speak on it at all … *cough cough* Stephen A. Smith. Both women are leaders, innovators, and just absolute icons of our generation but according to the ESPN sports commentator, Rihanna apparently has some big shoes to fill going into her Super Bowl halftime show performance.

Stephen A. Smith Goes Kanye West On Rih

Beyoncé had the best Super Bowl performance of ALL TIME!

Just kidding, Smith didn’t say exactly those words. But, they weren’t far off. The sports commentator who is well known for his hot takes on air took a dig at the Fenty founder during his appearance on Sherri Shepherd‘s Fox daytime talk show. “Ladies and gentlemen, she’s a lot of things — she’s spectacular, actually — and congratulations on new mama-hood,” continuing, “There’s one thing she’s not: She ain’t Beyoncé.” And well, safe to say that he didn’t receive much support for the crowd.

The live studio audience responded to his comment with a wave of groans and boos and very sparing amounts of cheers. Shepherd herself came in to defend the “Pon De Replay” singer saying, “We know she’s not Beyoncé.” And, she later added, “Beyoncé performed, but she’s had her time. Now it’s Rihanna.”

“Gotta Be More Careful!”

Just hours after the interview aired, Stephen A. Smith issued an apology to Rihanna and more praise to Beyoncé. “I’m gonna own it,” he said. “I know what y’all tryin’ to do. But I’m gon’ own it because I get paid to speak for a living, so I need to be more careful.

“I want Rihanna to know: You’re a superstar, you’re sensational, you’re spectacular,” the ESPN personality continued. “You’re no joke. And you are a worthy person to be doing the Super Bowl halftime show.”

And, while he could have just stopped there, he continued the video to defend where his comment initially came from.

“Now I’m a Beyoncé fan,” he stated. “I think that Beyoncé is not only a phenomenal performer, but the phenomenal performer. And the only reason any kind of comparison came into play is because Beyoncé performed at halftime at the Super Bowl not just by herself, but one separate Super Bowl performance with Bruno Mars and Coldplay. And I thought that those were two of the greatest shows that I’ve ever seen.

“So what I’m saying is anybody has to measure up to that,” he concluded. “Last year with Snoop and Dre and Mary J. and Eminem, I was like, ‘Bruno Mars! Beyoncé! Coldplay! Big time! They’ve got to measure up to that.’ Anybody who does a Super Bowl halftime show, forever I’m gonna say, ‘Beyoncé, Bruno Mars, Coldplay, and Beyoncé by themselves.’ Michael Jackson could still be alive and I would say, ‘It’s gotta measure up to that.’”

Rihanna Takes The Stage

Back in September, the NFL announced Rihanna’s taking the stage at halftime of Super Bowl LVII. This comes more than six years following the release of her beloved album, “Anti.” The announcement not only got fans excited for a performance but curious about a potential album on the way.