After months of an endless bull rally where it seemed like stocks could only go up, not down, Cramer was not surprised to see the market's first tangible decline spark sheer panic.
"I'm not disputing for one moment that today was anything but plum ugly, but let's put a huge caveat in here. The absolute numbers for this decline may sound big. Hey, there was a time back in 1987 ... where a down-500-point day was a crash," the "Mad Money" host said.
"But here's the thing: the absolute numbers, they don't matter. Only the percentages are important," he said.
When the Dow lost 500 points in 1987, it was a 22 percent decline. But this market's 666-point nosedive only amounted to a 2.5 percent decline — still "awful," but not a crash, Cramer said.