June 17, 2018 brought us the annual Money In The Bank Pay Per View extravaganza from Chicago.
With what was sure to be a polarizing crowd, did it deliver, or was it sent crashing down atop a twenty foot ladder in front of rabid fans?
The Bludgeon Brothers (c) defeated Gallows and Anderson via pin fall to retain the Smackdown world tag team titles.
The pre-show saw fans piling into the arena as they witnessed the Smackdown tag team title successfully defended as The Bludgeon Brothers, Harper and Rowan, defeated Gallows and Anderson via pin fall. “The Good Brothers” gave a valiant effort, but a double team powerbomb saw Gallows shoulders pinned to the mat for three.
Daniel Bryan defeated Big Cass via submission via the Yes Lock.
The main show began on a high note, as Chicago fans got to see Daniel Bryan defeat Big Cass for the second time as he forced the seven foot tall Staten Islander to submit.
Bryan had the fans not only behind him, but seemingly poised to riot if he didn’t walk away the victor in the match. He didn’t let them down and seems poised to enter the world title scene at any given moment.
Bobby Lashley defeated Sami Zayn via pin fall after a delayed vertical suplex.
These two talents have deserved so much more than they’ve been fed during this horrible feud. Lashley mercifully put this to bed with a delayed vertical suplex which really does appear to be his finish. Change that, and give him more of a personality.
He wasn’t over as this “white meat” babyface the first go-round and he was able to hone his craft and develop his personality working the independent scene. Zayn deserves better, period. Hopefully this train wreck has been derailed and both men will be treated to better opportunities.
Seth Rollins (c) defeats Elias via pin fall after a roll-up, retaining the Intercontinental title.
This was absolute quality, something always synonymous with the name Seth Rollins, but Elias helped him “burn it down” tonight. This certainly had to turn heads in the back and was a great showcase for the rising star. Perhaps we’ll “walk with” this feud down the line as it’s certainly in its infancy.
Alexa Bliss wins the first ever women’s Money In The Bank ladder match.
I won’t recap the individual competitors or we’ll be here all night. Bliss seemed to be floundering on Raw after a year or so on top and she legitimately capitalized on another Becky Lynch failure. Perhaps the “Lasskicker” will find solace in a heel turn down the road, but this was quite underwhelming consider the talent involved.
Kudos to Bliss, when will she seize the opportunity? We certainly wouldn’t have to wait long to find out.
Carmella (c) defeats Asuka via pinfall after interference from James Ellsworth, retaining the Smackdown women’s title
Yes, just exactly what everyone of us asked for last holiday season. The chinless wonder is back and the commentary time would have us believe he was an “Asuka clone”, I don’t know how I type this without laughing, let alone them saying it.
They took a talent who was undefeated for over a year and flush her down the drain once again making her just another name. Asuka carried the match, Carmella tried her best, and her title reign will continue with help from Ellsworth.
What happens next is anyone’s guess, but we’ll just have to wait and see.
Roman Reigns defeated Jinder Mahal via pin fall with the spear.
The crowd crapped all over it. They literally chanted for it to end and did the wave amongst other things, and Reigns won, probably propelling himself into a title match with the champ yet again.
I’m not angry with this, I’m not happy with it, Roman always puts in work in the ring and Jinder actually put up a quality effort as well. You just knew how this would go in front of this crowd and it did.
AJ Styles (c) defeated Shinsuke Nakamura in a Last Man Standing match to retain the Smackdown world title.
This was probably the best match they’ve to date. We saw a Styles Clash on Nakamura off the ringside steps, we saw Nakamura run three tables for a Kinshasa and we saw AJ Styles with a definitive victory over a polished talent and one recognized the world over, who they’ve managed to turn heel for no apparent reason, and one who doesn’t appear to have a distinctive path forward from this point.
Styles will be headed to a championship defense against Daniel Bryan or Samoa Joe if the stars align, but in the same night they’ve had us wonder what in the blue heck their plans are with Asuka, we saw the other Royal Rumble winner and former NXT champion pushed into limbo as well.
Enjoy the match for it’s quality and don’t overthink it, there will be plenty of time to do that going forward, it was a tremendous piece of work.
Ronda Rousey defeats Nia Jax (c) via DQ. Alexa Bliss cashes in her money in the bank to win the Raw women’s title.
As referenced earlier, Alexa pulled a page out of the “Kane” playbook. Just as Ronda Rousey had the arm-bar in place, the money in the bank briefcase was slammed into her back, forcing the DQ. Bliss assaulted the already damaged arm of Nia Jax with repeated shots and then, after a crisp DDT, Twisted Bliss spelled the end of Nia Jax and her title reign.
Bliss is back on top, and many hate it, but is it safe to say, or to at least question how much of a failure the Nia Jax title reign was or has been? To quote a colleague, she read from the book of “The Big Show” and turned heel and face like she was in a parade or attempting to learn a new dance.
Alexa being champ will allow for talents like Natalya, Rousey and Sasha Banks to give chase in a division that seemingly had no direction. We’ll see how this works out.
Braun Strowman wins the men’s Money in The Bank ladder match.
Strowman is over like rover and even though he spent half the match under a mountain of ladders while the athletic talent did the heavy lifting, he climbed the ladder to take down a contract for a cash-in he doesn’t need, to use a champion who isn’t there, for a title he should have won six months ago.
Right, so there’s that. Kofi Kingston was the member of the New Day involved in the match and he put up a valiant effort, the crowd clamoring for him to win as they know that he’s given years to the federation and can not only work, but promo with the best of them.
Kevin Owens was sent crashing through a table by Strowman, The Miz gave us one of the best reactions in years, nothing good ever appears to happen on Rusev day, and Bobby Roode appeared to be an afterthought.
Finn Balor and Samoa Joe looked like they might win at times and with AJ Styles retaining, surely Joe would win the contract to cash in on him, becoming a respected heel champion? Not a chance.
Strowman wins the contract and there is no telling when he’ll cash in and why he even needs too. Logic justifies that he’s due a title opportunity, but we’ll probably have to wade through the Reigns/Lesnar pool once again. Smackdown just signed a lucrative deal with Fox and they drive the car towards it with the tank on empty.
That was Money In The Bank folks, Extreme Rules is the next one up.
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