Las Vegas plays host to WWE’s annual premium live event as one man and one woman look to win the Money in the Bank, and whoever claims the title of Mr and Miss Money in the Bank will earn a contract for a championship match of their choice, any time and any place. On the men’s side, seven of the top competitors from Raw and SmackDown compete for the contract — Seth “Freakin'” Rollins, Riddle, Omos, Sami Zayn, Madcap Moss, Sheamus and Drew McIntyre — while for the women, the same rules will apply, and one winner will be crowned — Alexa Bliss, Liv Morgan, Lacey Evans, Raquel Gonzalez, Shotzi, Becky Lynch, or Asuka. The Undisputed Tag Team Championships will also be defended at Money in the Bank, as The Usos represent the Bloodline against long time rivals The Street Profits, and Theory will defend his United States Championship against the All Mighty Bobby Lashley. Both of the top Women’s Championships in the WWE will be defended in separate affairs, when Raw Women’s Champion Bianca Belair defends against Carmella (in place of Rhea Ripley, who was not medically cleared to wrestle), while Ronda Rousey will battle long-time friend turned bitter enemy, Natalya for the SmackDown gold.
+ Riddle vs Seth “Freakin'” Rollins vs Omos vs Madcapp Moss vs Sami Zayn vs Sheamus vs Drew McIntyre (Money in the Bank Ladder Match): this match was fine in a bubble, but as soon as you think about it for more than a second it makes no sense. I was terrified for Omos in this match, but he actually played his role perfectly. With the likes of Drew, Sheamus, Sami and Seth, this was of course a well wrestled match, and even Madcap didn’t look too out of place, despite a few very obvious mistakes on his part. I’m willing to say ‘let’s see where this goes’ on this one, but my hopes aren’t high
+ The Usos (Jimmy Uso & Jey Uso) (c) vs The Street Profits (Montez Ford & Angelo Dawkins) (WWE Undisputed Tag Team Championships): this was a match in three parts; the opening was just a standard TV match, then the middle portion was insanely good. Unfortunately, the ending felt very lacklustre after that fact. I actually really like the post-match angle, but I can guarantee it will not go anywhere interesting despite there being so many good ways to make it something special
+ Theory (c) vs Bobby Lashley (WWE United States Championship): this started off slow and boring, but eventually picked up. Theory is a stud, and while he is relative inexperienced, I’d call myself a fan of his character work. Lashley is a genetic freak and I am glad that he is now in the position he probably should have been many years ago, though I guess that ‘finally getting his dues’ aspect only adds to his character. I enjoyed this
– Ronda Rousey (c) vs Natalya (WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship): this was attempting to be a methodical and technical match, but it just looked sloppy and done in slow motion. Ronda has somehow gotten worse, and that’s never more apparent than when you can’t have a good match with Natalya, who I genuinely believe is one of the best all around women in WWE history. This was a dud, with a short-sighted aftermath
– Bianca Belair (c) vs Carmella (WWE Raw Women’s Championship): this was just not good at all. I like both of these women overall, but they did not work together, and never once appeared to be anything more than the replacement match it was — obviously Rhea Ripley was the plan before Carmella was thrown into the match, and it showed
– Asuka vs Raquel Rodriguez vs Liv Morgan vs Shotzi vs Becky Lynch vs Lacey Evans vs Alexa Bliss (Money in the Bank Ladder Match): this was an absolute trainwreck and I will be surprised if there weren’t at least two huge injuries, including Shotzi nearly dying live in the ring. Only Becky and Asuka seemed to have any idea what to do between the horrendously obviously pre-planned moments, and Shotzi and Raquel were the worst offenders. Liv, Lacey and Alexa are perfectly fine in regular matches, but were not in this
Should you watch this event: I understand the gendered split above, but don’t be too disheartened: none of the men’s matches were must see by any means. The entire concept of MITB feels so sterilised and unimportant, as if it’s “that time of year, might as well do some qualifying matches” when some of these competitors have not necessarily done anything recently to be involved in a match like this. I didn’t care for this show.