Coming this Sunday is WWE’s next feature pay per view event. So much is on the line in a card packed full of stars and gimmick matches. With two Money in the Bank ladder matches on the show and Summerslam just a month away, this card will determine the main event scene for the next few months. Taking a deeper look at the show, it is less about who wins that is so intriguing, but more so the involvement of the stars in these matches and the stories their presence tells.
Sunday, July 18th 2010
The Sprint Center
Kansas City, Missouri
WWE Money in the Bank
WWE Divas Championship Match: Alicia Fox vs. Eve Torres
With Maryse now on the arm of Ted Dibiase, she is able to cool down before the audience got burnt out on her as the top heel in the Divas division. Meanwhile, Alicia Fox has stepped up. She may not be the greatest talent in the world, but there is no denying her charisma. This Sunday will not be the last encounter between her and Eve. A buildup to Summerslam seems to be in the works. Eve’s ascension to the top baby face Diva on the Raw roster has been an incredible climb in such a short time. This is one of those matches where the winner doesn’t matter because the program will continue.
Unified WWE Tag Team Championship Match: The Hart Dynasty vs. The Usos
The WWE Tag Team Division has been anything but interesting the last few months. Part of that may be that WWE is now getting back to full-time tag teams in the division instead of makeshift teams involving upper-card stars. That feeling is natural. It is a good thing that they have now shifted the focus back to actual teams instead of alliances. The coming month should show a dramatic improvement in the tag team ranks as the Usos continue to develop and the Hart Dynasty carves their own niche without Bret Hart in the picture. With the Nexus faction having seven stars, there is no reason at least one full-time tag team cannot emerge.
World Heavyweight Championship Match: Rey Mysterio vs. Jack Swagger
Mysterio’s title reign has been a welcome surprise in the wrestling world. Jack Swagger was one of two that WWE catapulted to main event status in the last year. This looks to be Swagger’s last pay per view title match for some time. Regardless, among a show packed with star power and gimmick matches, Mysterio-Swagger looks to be the most promising match on the entire card. An aggressive turn by Swagger will make this match all the more interesting.
WWE Women’s Championship Match: Layla vs. Kelly Kelly
Kelly’s charisma made her a great foil for Maryse on Raw and she fits very well in this feud with Team Lay-Cool. This program will likely continue past this Sunday, but a brief run with Kelly as champion would be a fun change. A great angle would be Kelly getting under McCool’s skin by making herself a team with Michelle. Every week she could announce them as Team McKelly, and force McCool to do embarrassing antics as her co-champion. All the while, Layla’s anger would be brewing. By the time Summerslam, the title could be put back on Layla and Team Lay-Cool could resume their reign.
Steel Cage Match for the WWE Championship: Sheamus vs. John Cena
Cena-Sheamus has been the most consistent title feud since Cena-Orton last year. Back in December, Sheamus was just a guy WWE was taking a chance on. Now he has become the go-to opponent for Cena. At one time Sheamus needed to prove himself to the world by getting a definitive win over Cena. This Sunday’s match has turned from a match of Cena’s retribution to a clash between two gods of the ring trying to fend off a rebel faction so they can finally settle who the better man is.
Money in the Bank Ladder Match: Ted Dibiase vs. The Miz vs. Randy Orton vs. Edge vs. Mark Henry vs. Evan Bourne vs. Chris Jericho vs. John Morrison
Raw’s MITB match is the most star-studded since 2007’s match at Wrestlemania 23. Part of what made WM 23’s match so special was that despite all of the star power a new star emerged out of the match, Mr. Kennedy. Recent MITB matches have had bigger stars for intrigue, but Raw’s match incorporates more star power to build up the match since it plays a more significant role than it has on the Wrestlemania stage.
The biggest advantage to having Orton walk away with the briefcase is the potential for a big pay per view buy rate down the line. Orton is among the most over and popular performers on the roster. Having him use his title shot against a hot heel champion would have fans clamoring.
Bourne has a great mini-feud going with Orton. Two weeks in a row Orton got the upper hand on Bourne. Critics thought that it made Bourne look week, but it actually played out just right. Orton is a veteran and should be getting the upper hand on Bourne. Sunday will be when Bourne finally gets back at Orton by knocking him off the ladder as he is about to get the win or pull off a big move on Randy.
There is no worst choice to win on Sunday than Edge. He has already won MITB and he took Kennedy’s win as well. Looking at Edge’s promo on Monday about a little man inside him telling him to hurt people was kind of sad. Not because Edge is a bad talent, but because he has lost his niche. How he gets that back is anyone’s guess. A continuation of his feud with Orton will help. Perhaps a return to his roots as a comedic heel like has was with Christian would help.
On the other hand you have a heel who has hit his stride. Miz is on fire right now. Miz does not need to win this match but it would fit better than anyone else in the match. Holding off until Mania for his title shot against John Cena would be the ideal main event. Even if he loses, Miz will continue his hot streak.
His pairing with Maryse has helped develop his character but also overshadowed him. Dibiase has a great opportunity should he win on Sunday, but should he lose and Miz win, it would be the perfect time for Maryse to leave him in the dust for Mr. Money in the Bank.
Henry’s unexpected participation in this match is a letdown. Henry could have been pushed strong going into this match but he became a backup plan instead. When Michael Hayes was pushing for WWE to put Henry on Smackdown they should have done so.
Aside from Bourne, Morrison will be the other flyer in the match. The main event push so many people had clamored for last year seems to have cooled. Winning MITB at this point may hinder more than help him. Regardless, Morrison is at his best when he is in these types of matches. Expect ot see nothing short of spectacular from Morrison on Sunday.
The man who invented MITB has come full circle. With rumors that Jericho is on his way out of the company, perhaps a Jericho win would be a fitting angle. After a series of losses, Jericho could win MITB but vow that if he became the first person to lose when cashing in the title shot, he would retire.
Money in the Bank Ladder Match: Dolph Ziggler vs. Matt Hardy vs. Drew McIntyre vs. The Big Show vs. Christian vs. Kane vs. Kofi Kingston vs. Cody Rhodes
A Dolph win is highly unlikely, but it is great to see him back in a prominent role again. Late last year, his matches were the highlight of John Morrison’s I-C Title reign. In the end, he had to take a back seat to Drew McIntyre. This Sunday poor Dolph may take a backseat again to McIntyre.
Matt Hardy has been known for his ladder matches for the past eleven years. For all his hard work and deication, a win would be great.
On the rampage for his brother’s attacker, a title match seems like the last thing on Kane’s mind. Nevertheless, he has always been good in ladder matches. A win for Kane would add a whole new dynamic to his character while he hunts down the individual who attacked his brother. If Kane does turn out to be the one who took out Taker, a great way to play it out would be Kane getting his title match against Mysterio at Summerslam, only for Taker to show up and cost his brother the title.
When will WWE give this guy a main event run? The same question was asked about Chris Benoit for several years before he got his chance. When he finally did get that opportunity it was bigger and better than anyone could have hoped for. Perhaps that is what is in store for Christian. When and if they decide to pull the trigger on him, it will be intriguing no matter who he goes up against. His presence in this Sunday’s match is a perfect addition.
We have come a long way since last November’s program between Kofi and Randy Orton. He may be a mid carder for now, but Kofi always brings excitement to the ring. His current role in the I-C title picture is the perfect fit for him right now. Placement in matches such as this and the Elimination Chamber are a good way to give him the main event exposure until he is ready for the next step.
“Dashing” is a perfect fit for Smackdown. Cody is the sleeper or dark horse for this match. There is no more surprising choice to walk out of this pay per view with the briefcase than Cody Rhodes. Looking back at Wrestlemania 23, Mr. Kennedy was that sleeper choice. Cody is like that now. Cody would greatly benefit from a win here. The briefcase can be used to push him, yet at the same time he can drag out his title shot months down the line. It is very similar to a title in that both he title and the star get each other over
The very presence of Show in a ladder match makes it a must-see. Show serves as a pillar to the other stars in the match. He doesn’t have to win and he probably shouldn’t. Show is very good at getting both himself and his opponent over. This Sunday will be no different when he goes up against seven other competitors.
Drew may very well lose this match, but it just seems like the stars are aligning for him. Sheamus and Swagger were two guys who took their main event pushes and used them to improve their game. Perhaps McIntyre can do that too…maybe.
There it is. You have your own thoughts on MITB? Send me your thoughts at firstname.lastname@example.org.
That will wrap up this week’s Notes from the Nosebleeds. Hope you all enjoy the pay per view. On a side note, I want to send a big thanks to David Stephens for his approval of my Raw recap this week. It is near impossible to do a great job recapping the biggest show in wrestling every week but David somehow manages to do that, and his approval means a great deal.
Thanks for reading.