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Especially in light of Survivor Series’ struggle to maintain its identity, that it has earned over the years, as one of the Big Four PPVs (or PLEs nowadays), many have argued that Money in the Bank has become the new 4th biggest event in WWE’s calendar year. The choices made on this night do have – and have had – major implications for WWE storylines going forward. So, with this in mind, and with the shadow of SummerSlam looming at month’s end, we get a sense of where we are heading here into WWEs peak summer season. So how did things pan out? Let’s find out…
The show opens with a video package dwelling on the whole concept, you know the drill by now.
1. Women’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match
Shotzi vs. Becky Lynch vs. Alexa Bliss vs. Liv Morgan vs. Raquel Rodriguez vs. Lacey Evans vs. Asuke
A wise choice to open the event, this women’s money in the bank ladder match was an entertaining enough but unfortunately untidy affair. Everyone worked incredibly hard but the nature of the beast in these matches is risk, and sadly, there were numerous moments within this match that did not quite come off. That being said, the effort was certainly there and there were some highlights, with Becky Lynch, Alexa Bliss and Asuke standing out as the A-game players in this field, while newcomer Raquel Rodriguez got some strength spots in which to shine. Ultimately though the decision to have Liv Morgan pay off all that hard work and snatch the briefcase for the win was a good one, and deserved. This was less than it should have been but still had moments in spite of some unfortunate slip ups.
2. WWE United States Championship Match
Bobby Lashley vs. Theory (c)
Bobby Lashley’s work at the moment is getting better and better. Want proof? He made a pose down segment in 2022 work! But sadly he was just to be another head on Theory’s wall here as the young selfie taker headed to bigger things right? Right? Wrong! This match was a real surprise. A back and forth affair, in which Lashley was taken to the edge at points by the slippery management-chosen prodigy, and which ended in a genuine shock, as Theory was caught in The Hurt Lock and submitted to give us a new champion. Lashley and Theory worked really well together here and I was thrilled to see The Almighty get gold again. Nice to have a genuinely shocking result too.
Backstage, Miss Money in the Bank 2022 Liv Morgan was interviewed, and said she was prioritising the celebration tonight over cashing in, hmmm.
3. WWE Raw Women’s Championship
Bianca Belair (c) vs. Carmella
Let’s call this what it is: winging it. The unfortunate injury of original challenger Rhea Ripley meant they had to go with something…and Carmella was that something. No disrespect but Carmella’s days as a major women’s title threat have passed and this spot could have gone to someone else. The match was what it was. Nothing special and Bianca Belair did all she could to sell her opponent as a challenge but we all know the truth, ain’t no way this was going any other way than a simplEST victory for the Champ. That said, they did get me with Carmella’s post match attack. I expected Liv’s music to kick in at any time but there was no cash in. Which was probably wise considering how Bianca’s first reign ended around this time last year, in controversial fashion.
4. WWE Undisputed Tag Team Championships
The Usos (c) vs. The Street Profits
I hold my hands up and say The Bloodline stuff is not my thing, and I am growing tired of the collective reigns (so to speak). Plus, this match held no real excitement ahead of its happening, as we have seen many variations of it on weekly TV. However, I can admit when I am wrong, and I was here because The Usos and The Street Profits had a hell of a match here. True, you might say there were things we have seen from them all a few times before but they fine-tuned that stuff, and the match got better and better as it went on, and despite a somewhat flat borderline screwy finish (with Montez Ford’s shoulder being up during the end pinfall that secured The Usos victory), I was left eager to see the inevitable rematch, so it did the job. I want to see these two teams square off again at Summerslam and off the back of this tremendous effort, I ask you…who better than The Street Profits to break The Usos’ title run of dominance?!! Oh and Montez Ford is becoming an absolute star. Still, hope WWE doesn’t break up the Profits anytime soon.
A creepy and cryptic vignette airs, one of the most exciting elements of this show in fact, with various religious and dark iconography alongside some other snapshot subtle references. I know who I’d love this to be hinting at (as very unlikely as that is) but am still ok with the guy it is (way more likely) suggesting will be back shortly. Let’s leave it at that.
5. WWE Smackdown Women’s Championship
Ronda Rousey (c) vs. Natalya
I seem to be in a minority here, but I enjoyed this match. Poor old Natalya has become the women’s division Dolph Ziggler. An incredibly talented performer whose feuds seem like nothing more than filler matches to the title run of a star competitor. That said, ahead of this match, both her and Ronda Rousey I thought did a great job of making this thing personal. I liked this match, it was feisty and well wrestled, with a focus on wear down submission and chain wrestling, which I rather enjoyed. Crowd eventually got into it thankfully, as a beaten down Rousey on one bad leg got the victory, barely standing afterwards…uh-oh!
6. WWE Smackdown Women’s Championship
Ronda Rousey (c) vs. Liv Morgan
Out came Liv, and up came the crowd to their feet. And I genuinely thought we had a Damian Sandow moment here, as Liv was caught in the ankle lock from the off by Rousey as the cash in was official. But Liv fought out of it and secured a pin for the win. Liv has achieved her dream and it was a nice moment to see! Hope this run for Liv goes well. Nice showing of respect afterwards by Rousey too, who pretty much admitted fair cop…which was rather refreshing for a cash in victim!
7. Men’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match
Seth ‘ Freakin’ Rollins vs. Drew McIntyre vs. Sheamus vs. Theory vs. Omos vs. Riddle vs. Madcap Moss vs. Sami Zayn
Before the match even started, Adam Pearce came to the stage to announce an 8th competitor in…Theory. And suddenly we knew where this was going. In fairness, they did play up the whole “The Boss’ chosen one” thing here but it was still somewhat disappointing, as we knew precisely the result from the off. Still, this was a decent MITB Ladder match, with Omos playing the monster role well and Sami Zayn’s sneaky tactics being very entertaining. Had it not been for Theory’s last minute addition, Drew McIntyre, Riddle and Seth Rollins were definitely the likely winners but of course Theory was the one who got to the top of the ladder and got the briefcase. I mean, it could have been better done but he’ll likely play this Mr. Money in the Bank role realistically well.
Overall, this show wasn’t bad but it was a placeholder as we head to The Biggest Party of the Summer Summerslam. Barring Liv’s win and cash in, had you missed this show, you could have quite easily caught up. And arguably the greatest other talking point was that cryptic vignette. There were some good matches (Bobby/Theory, Usos/Profits) but I found myself more concerned with what was next than what was happening right here and both MITB matches were fine but likely to be unmemorable in time to come. A decent evenings wrestling entertainment was undeniably offered but I reckon SummerSlam will be the main course!