This is the WWE Week in Review. We are coming off another very good PPV. Money in the Bank was well worth paying the money you have in your bank. Especially if you have the WWE Network. It really is a steal at $9.99 a month. Since I don’t work for WWE, I’m done shilling the Network. We’ve got a new WWE World Heavyweight Champion and someone looking to create a career defining moment with a briefcase so let’s get started.
John Cena is the New WWE World Heavyweight Champion.
Cena captured his 15th World Title by outlasting seven other Superstars in a Ladder Match at the Money in the Bank PPV. The match was a quality main event but wasn’t the “Oh My God” spot fest you saw in the previous Ladder Match. That’s to be expected when guys like Cena and Randy Orton are in the match. Cena won after hitting an Attitude Adjustment on Orton onto Kane and climbing the ladder and retrieving the titles.
Of course the Internet was up in arms that Cena won the title. Same old Cena, right? Probably but WWE made the right call here. Of the guys fans most likely wanted to win the match, Cesaro, Bray Wyatt and Roman Reigns, none of them are ready for varying reasons. Sheamus, Kane and Alberto Del Rio weren’t viable candidates either for varying reasons. That left Orton and Cena. Orton was Champion for most of the last year so I can see why they went with Cena just for that reason alone.
The reason they really went with Cena in my eyes is because of SummerSlam and the huge main event WWE is looking to book. Cena vs. Lesnar for the Championship. These two faced off in Lesnar’s first match back in WWE in 2012 and it was outstanding. It’s a fresh matchup because it was only done once and that was more than two years ago. It’s a match between two legit superstars that deserves to headline a major show like SummerSlam. The cards lined up perfectly for Vince McMahon so you can’t blame him for wanting to do the match. With Reigns not ready, Daniel Bryan injured and CM Punk being a stay at home husband, this was the Main Event SummerSlam needed.
Seth Rollins is Mr. Money in the Bank.
I picked Dolph Ziggler to win the Money in the Bank briefcase only because I thought it was too obvious that Rollins would win. That and I’m a huge Ziggler fan and wanted him to hold that Briefcase. This Ladder Match was an insane match I’d put in the ****1/2 range. One of WWE’s best matches of the year. The two spots that stand out to me from this match both involve Rollins. When he took the back body drop off the ladder onto the bridged ladder was one. That was insane enough but what made it even more crazy was that the impact of him hitting the ladder caused him to spring up and the ladder slipped off the ropes on his way down. That was really scary to watch live because he could’ve been potentially injured but luckily he was ok. Then he took a superplex from the top of the ladder from Dean Ambrose which had to kill both guys. Eventually, with the aid of Kane, Triple H’s new golden boy became Mr. Money in the Bank.
I thought once The Shield broke up that Rollins would be the least likely to become Champion. Now with the MITB Briefcase he suddenly becomes the most likely. The interesting thing is when they pull the trigger on him winning. Maybe they do wait almost a whole year and have him cash-in on Roman Reigns after he (as many expect) wins the Championship at WrestleMania 31. It’ll also be interesting to see how long they keep having Dean Ambrose thwart Rollins’ attempts at cashing in. Ambrose promised he would never let Rollins cash in the contract and we saw that come true already on RAW when Rollins had the chance after Cena was taken out by Kane. All I know is that Seth Rollins has a bright future in WWE and now his future is as bright as gold.
Bad News Barrett suffers a severe shoulder injury and forfeits the Intercontinental Championship.
You have to feel bad for Barrett. A few years ago when he was the rumored favorite to win the MITB briefcase he suffered a severe elbow injury and couldn’t compete in the match. Then on the SmackDown before Money in the Bank he suffered a separated shoulder that tore all kinds of ligaments. It’s going to keep him on the shelf for a while. Barrett was again a rumored favorite to win MITB this year.
Barrett was also the reigning Intercontinental Champion and was really bringing the title back into the forefront. Barrett has always been a guy with a ton of talent that just couldn’t stay healthy and sustain the push WWE was giving him.
The title is now vacated and a new champion will be crowned at Battleground. Instead of doing something cool like having a one night tournament on SmackDown, a new champion will be crowned in a regular run-of-the-mill Battle Royal. While I do enjoy a good Battle Royal, I feel that WWE could’ve been a bit more creative here. There’s a bunch of guys in the Battle Royal already announced like Rybaxel, Rob Van Dam and Bo Dallas. The only two I’m concerned with is Dolph Ziggler and Cesaro. To really bring the Intercontinental Championship back to prominence it needs to go back to being the “workhorse” title and either one of those guys will be more than fitting of that moniker. I’m leaning towards Cesaro right now because he’s been losing a lot this week and it’s just what WWE does before pushing a guy.
RAW is Returns.
It was some sight to see three big returns to the WWE roster on Monday night. There were rumors all day Monday that a former WWE Champion would return to WWE on RAW. Many hoped/speculated it was Chris Jericho. Then out came The Miz and the Internet throw crap at the screen like a bunch of caged monkeys. Then later in Miz’s segment, Chris Jericho did indeed return and the Internet jumped up and down like they had just been handed a fresh banana. The other return was the brand new Mrs. Brooks, AJ Lee. Let’s take a look at each person.
The Miz: Miz came back as Hollywood Miz. Claiming that he was a big movie star now and how studios wanted him to star in their movies. Right, that’s why you’ve only been in straight to DVD project and ABC Family specials. He changed the tone in which he spoke and told us the only reason he returned to WWE was to get the respect from the fans that a former WWE Champion and WrestleMania main eventer deserves and that he never got. The respect he got was in the form of a Code Breaker from Chris Jericho. In his first night back on the job, he’s booked to look like a loser. He had been booked like a loser for much of the last three years so I’m sure Miz wasn’t too thrilled about this. New character, same old Miz. I’m not sure what he can be besides a mid-level heel at this point in his career. If WWE had any interest in rebuilding him I doubt he’d taken a Code Breaker right off the bat.
Chris Jericho: He’s here to do what he does best, have great matches and put people over. The recipient of the Jericho push is Bray Wyatt. Jericho recently revealed he’d only come back to work with a few guys. One of which is Daniel Bryan and the other is Bray Wyatt. The cards fell perfectly for Jericho and WWE and now we have what should be a very entertaining feud. Jericho is only scheduled to be back until the Night of Champions PPV. Early reports are that they’ll save the Jericho/Wyatt match for SummerSlam and have Miz and Jericho square off at Battleground. Wyatt is the perfect guy to face Jericho because Jericho doesn’t care about wins and losses and only cares about helping another guy get over by having great matches. Wyatt almost needs to be rebuilt after all the steam he lost by losing his feud to John Cena.
AJ Lee: AJ returns from her hiatus and wedding to some guy who used to work for WWE. A guy that walked out on them but fans still think it’s cool to chant his name at events. Anyway, in a reversal of fortunes when Paige surprised AJ to win the Divas Championship the night after WrestleMania, AJ returned to surprise Paige and got the Champion to put the title on the line and successfully regained the silver butterfly. It was a match that seemed like a double turn. Lee came off like the babyface and she was being cheered heavily before even saying anything since the fans were so happy to see her. She’s one the few Divas to actually be given time to develop a character in the last ten years. Paige could work as a heel. She didn’t really click with the crowd as a babyface so maybe this will help her. She is a talented, young Diva so there’s still time for her to grow as a performer. Hopefully WWE will book this like a men’s feud and allow the fans to get invested in it by having the two cut promos on each other and have good, competitive matches.
The Retro Wrestling Match of the Week- WCW Championship Match- Hollywood Hogan vs. Ric Flair in a Barbed Wire Steel Cage Match from WCW Uncensored 1999
For whatever reason I had been watching some of Hulk Hogan’s WCW PPV matches late in his run there this past week. By the time WWF started to really roll with The Attitude Era I had basically stopped paying attention to WCW. As a big Hulkamaniac I decided to see what Hulk was up to during this time period. I almost wished I hadn’t. In WCW’s convoluted best they booked a First Blood Match where both men bled and the match didn’t end. Ric Flair was in control of WCW and told the referee to use discretion when a wrestler would bleed. No nicks or scrapes would end this match. Then Flair got busted wide open and nothing happened. Hogan was busted open and nothing happened. Last time I checked a First Blood Match meant the first one to bleed loses. Even the announcers were dumbfounded. Maybe you could win by escaping the cage only after your opponent bled. How? There’s no door and the top is covered in barbed wire. That’s out. Maybe it was by pinfall after your opponent bled. Hogan hit the Leg Drop and the referee wouldn’t count. Then all of a sudden Hogan passed out while in the Figure Four and the referee decided to count to three and Ric Flair became the WCW Champion once again. The match itself wasn’t bad. It was a real old school fight that could have been a quality main event had it not been for the total lack of any sensible rules in the match. When your announcers have no clue what the hell is going on, you know you’ve royally screwed something up.
(That’s what she said.)
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