The John Report: WWE Money in the Bank Preview

It’s the middle of July, which means it’s time for the first annual WWE Money in the Bank PPV. Yes, that’s what summer means. We’ve got two 8 man ladder matches with the winner getting title shots whenever they want on the brand they are competing on within a period of one year. We also get two major title matches. On paper it looks like a strong card because MITB matches are generally high in quality. It could be a sleeper in terms of one of the better PPVs of 2010.

I normally have a partner when I do these previews but as a wise man once said: “Dave’s not here, man.” He’s on vacation. Or something. Sure, we’ll call it vacation. Hopefully he’s back for next month. For now, let’s get to it.

Tag Titles: The Hart Dynasty vs. The Usos

I have liked the feud so far. They have introduced The Usos in an impactful way. I think THD should have a longer run and I wish it was a better run than they’ve been having. Aren’t the tag champs allowed on Smackown? They are. So why aren’t they ever there? Oh right, because Vince hates tag teams. I think The Usos going over clean on Raw (in a six person tag) means THD are likely retaining the belts here. Fine by me. One more thing: Natalya? Get the Divas Title on her. She deserves it.
The Pick: The Hart Dynasty

Women’s Title: Layla vs. Kelly Kelly

Yawn. When the biggest reason for the feud is because the heels call the babyface “Smelly” Kelly due to it rhyming with her name you know it’s not great. Both these girls work hard, but if you compare this match to some of the women’s matches of the past years you can see how far the quality has dipped. I’ll go with Layla retaining because it’s not like they have much else going on with SD’s women. Might as well continue the chase.
The Pick: Layla

Divas Title: Alicia Fox vs. Eve

I hope this is the end of Eve’s push. I don’t think the fans care about her too much. Like I said earlier, it’s time to get Natalya into the number one babyface spot. Management appears to be high on Alicia. She is making wedding planners proud, isn’t she? I’ll never stop with that joke. The champ retains with the axe kick that is bound to hurt somebody one of these days. Can you dig it, sucka?
The Pick: Alicia Fox

Smackdown Money in the Bank: Big Show, Matt Hardy, Christian, Kofi Kingston,
Cody Rhodes, Kane, Drew McIntyre & Dolph Ziggler

It’s tough to predict MITB. At Mania I thought McIntyre was winning for sure. Didn’t happen. Instead, they had Swagger win even though he was booked like an idiot for six months before that. In other words, previous pushes don’t seem to matter although theoretically they should. Let’s run down each guy individually to see my thoughts on them.

Big Show – He won’t win. Had title shots. He’s a role player now. It should be interesting to see him try to climb even with a gimmicked ladder. Good for comedy.

Matt Hardy – Has an outside shot of winning. You never know. Fans are receptive to him and they could be willing to give him a push. I don’t think so, though.

Christian – My personal favorite, but we all know Vince hates me, which kills that from happening. Of everybody in the match he deserves it the most based on talent.

Kofi Kingston – A viable candidate for sure because he’s popular and sniffed the main event level a bit. Plus, he’s over with the fans.

Cody Rhodes – The new “Dashing” gimmick could lead to a bright future for him. I just think it’s too early. He’ll probably settle into that IC title picture soon.

Kane – No. He’s heading to the vegetative match with Undertaker at Summerslam if Taker’s ready for it.

Drew McIntyre – Who knows? On the one hand I think management is still high on him. On the other hand, it seems like they want to push him. It’s hard to really gauge.

Dolph Ziggler – I like him. I think management is keen on him. I don’t know if they are willing to put him over in this match and have him cash in MITB, but don’t be shocked if it happens.

To summarize, I think most guys have a decent shot except Kane and Big Show. Cody’s probably a year away. That leaves five. Will Christian or Matt get a push despite being perpetual midcarders? I don’t know. Will Ziggler leap over the IC title level to get the briefcase? Could happen. I guess I like McIntyre the best with Kingston as my second pick. The thing is I’m predicting a heel win on the Raw side (we’ll get there after this), so I think Smackdown should have a babyface winner. Guess I’m going with Kingston although if I was betting I’d hold onto my money because it can go so many different ways. Good luck figuring this one out! It should be a fun 15 minute spotfest regardless of what happens.
The Pick: Kofi Kingston

Raw Money in the Bank: Randy Orton, John Morrison, Mark Henry, Evan Bourne,
Ted Dibiase, Chris Jericho, Edge & The Miz

I’ll do the same thing that I did for Smackdown by going over each person.

Randy Orton – Very likely candidate for the win based on the booking. He gets title shots all the time, though, so doesn’t need the win. I think he’ll get close and Edge will screw him over at the end.

John Morrison – I’d love to see it happen. He’s not being booked strong on Raw at all, though. Then again neither was Swagger when he won. I wish he stayed on Smackdown.

Mark Henry – Hahahahaha. That would be hilarious. Not happening. If he wins I’ll change my name to Joanna for a week in all my writing. That’s the promise.

Evan Bourne – Would be cool if he won, wouldn’t it? I think they like him and they know the fans do, but a WWE title push already? No. Not yet.

Ted Dibiase – Outside shot if they really want to push him. Adding Maryse to his act really has helped although I don’t think it’s enough to have him win here. It would be similar to Swagger’s out of nowhere Mania win, though.

Chris Jericho – A favorite in terms of being a champ before, but I think he’s mostly here to add credibility to the match. He’s unlikely to win.

Edge – They have built him up as the biggest threat due to his past. I think he, like Orton, will be very close. Hands on the briefcase

The Miz – My pick to win. He deserves it. Has come a long way from the annoying midcard heel to a bonafide star. This is the star making match. He’s my pick.

I think Miz, Orton or Edge are the real contenders here. It’s too soon for Bourne and I don’t think they like Dibiase enough to do it. I’m going with Miz. I hope it happens. As far as the match quality goes, it’ll be interesting to see what kind of high spot Bourne does. Will he do the Air Bourne off a ladder onto a group of people on the floor? Could happen. It should make for a very good match in terms of quality.
The Pick: The Miz

World Championship: Rey Mysterio vs. Jack Swagger

Remember when Jack Swagger was the World Champion and he was booked like a moron who couldn’t win matches? Now that he’s not champion he’s booked like somebody with focus. He’s pissed he lost the belt, so he’s started to use the Ankle Lock (Ken Shamrock is IN THE ZONE right now) as a way to hurt people. Mysterio’s going to walk into the match selling the ankle injury, which should play into the story of the match. I’m sure Jack will work on the leg the whole time, Rey will make the big comeback and probably keep the belt for a little while longer. It’s interesting to note that they don’t call it the World HEAVYWEIGHT Championship when Rey has it. See, because he’s small. In case you didn’t know. That’s Vince. What a genius.
The Pick: Rey Mysterio

WWE Championship Steel Cage: Sheamus vs. John Cena

This has been built up okay. Sheamus won the belt in the 4 way thanks to Nexus interfering. Cena gets his rematch. The dark cloud known as Nexus hangs over the match too. What could they do? Cena cut a promo saying the cage keeps others from interfering. Sure it does…not always. Fella, I smell a screw job with Sheamus retaining the title here. I think they’ll work a 15 minute match, Cena will get to the door, he’ll try to leave and Nexus will show up to greet him. Cue a cage slamming to the head. That will allow Sheamus to escape the other side of the cage for the win. How else can they book it so that Sheamus retains while Cena doesn’t lose in a clean manner? Seems possible to me.
The Pick: Sheamus

————

I think it’s a good card. I love ladder matches, so having two on one show works for me. Does it dilute the gimmick a bit? Sure. But when you think about it, what’s fresh in WWE anymore? I’ll take a quality gimmick match over an average regular match most of the time. Plus, with two briefcases running around after this show it could lead to one of those memorable moments we like seeing on TV. Who? When? Where? What? Questions will be answered. It should be a newsworthy night at least.

I’m not sure if I’ll be watching the PPV live. If I do I’ll have a live recap up on thejohnreport.net on Sunday and I will let you know earlier in the day about that. If not, I’ll have a recap posted on Monday before Raw.

Thanks for reading.

John Canton – john@thejohnreport.net
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