We are just a little over 24 hours away from the 2012 WWE Money in the Bank PPV; live from Phoenix, Arizona at the US Airways Center. Home of the NBA Phoenix Suns and the NHL Phoenix Coyotes. This will be the 3rd year of the Money in the Bank PPV since the match broke away from its Wrestlemania Home at WrestleMania 26 (coincidentally taken place in Arizona).
Last years PPV drew critical acclaim and was arguably the best PPV of 2011, with CM Punk and John Cena headlining for the WWE Championship. This year, the pay per view is taking on a bit of a different tune as the WWE Championship match has the attention and focus as your typical primetime; teen drama where we will see Daniel Bryan challenge CM Punk for the WWE Championship with AJ being the special guest referee. There is an old saying that goes, “what a difference a year makes” and this is no exception.
This article will focus on the announced matches for the PPV, and my take and prediction for each match.
For the WWE World Tag Team Championship
Kofi Kingston and R-Truth (c) vs. Hunico and Camacho
My take: There are so many things wrong with this match. I have a problem with this match being on the free YouTube preshow. This isn’t just a mid-carder vs. mid carder match, this is for a world championship, and it’s on the pre-show? I’m sorry but I highly doubt that Demolition vs. The Powers of Pain was an option to be the pre-show match at WM 5. I highly doubt that Bret and Owen Hart vs. The Quebecers at the 1994 Royal Rumble was an option to be the preshow match. I HIGHLY doubt that the WCW Tag Team Champions the Dudley Boys vs. The WWF Tag Team Champions the Hardy Boys at the 2001 Survivor Series to unify the titles in a steel cage was ever considered to be a preshow match. Doesn’t do any justice to the title belts by dedignifying this as a crowd warm up match. In addition, why are the Primetime Players NOT in this match? I thought that they won the #1 contendership at the last PPV? Anyway, I cannot see the titles changing during the pre-show. Kofi is crazy over with the kids and the company loves the guy so there is much more benefit with him holding onto the title.
World Heavyweight Championship Money in the Bank Ladder Match
Damien Sandow vs. Tyson Kidd vs. Santino Marella vs. Christian vs. Tensai vs. Sin Cara vs. Cody Rhodes vs. Dolph Ziggler
I don’t care if the star power is in the WWE Championship MITB match, this match, I feel will steal the show and be the match of the night. There is so much in the match that every single competitor has to prove. Not only the opportunity to get one step closer to the World Heavyweight Championship (kayfabe), but also the respect of the boys in the locker room, as this right here are the future athletes of the WWE in this match. This will be the first time that we really see what Damien Sandow is made up of, besides just being a master on the mike. Tyson Kidd has been given the branch of opportunity once again; this is his night to take full advantage. Santino Marella will continue to delight the crowd as he always does. Christian is the sheer veteran of this match and the general to make sure that this match is made to be connected well together. He is the current IC champion and one of the masters of the ladder match genre. Tensai is going to be the one to give us our power spots, so Tyson Kidd and Sin Car need to be ready for a bruise or two. Sin Cara is really on thin ice with the WWE and may not be in the company much longer. The best thing you can do for your career right now is while this may be your exit, exit with a bang. Cody Rhodes has proven to be one of the future top guys in the next couple of years. I expect him to shine in this match. Monday Sept 20th 2010, I watch Dolph Ziggler wrestle Daniel Bryan on an episode of Monday Night Raw, and that was the night when I became a full Dolph Ziggler fan and endorser as they gave me the match of the year. I said last year that Dolph would win MITB at the 2011 ppv, but was disappointed when he wasn’t in either match. This is Dolph’s time, this is his path to winning the Worlds Heavyweight Championship and brining honor and prestige back to that title. This is his night to shine, and his night to be at the top of the mountain.
Winner: Dolph Ziggler
The World Heavyweight Championship Match
Sheamus (c) vs. Alberto Del Rio
Alberto Del Rio is once again on the hunt for the one title that has been his Achilles heel, the WHC. Not since his program with The Rated R Superstar Edge, has he been in contention with the WHC, since the 2nd half of 2011 his focus was on the WWE Championship. Del Rio is back in contention and with him, literally, being the poster child of the PPV he has all of the momentum of the world of coming out on top. He was a man of a few words this past Monday on Raw where he just gave Sheamus a quick fair warning to be ready for Sunday. Shemus has been on a defined role lately on both Raw and Smackdown in various matches. Shemus has really elevated of being the current “company face”, with his uncanny size and construed dialogue, he is another wrestler who the company is high on and having the belt on him does the company much good, so I don’t see it going anywhere for now.
WWE Championship Money in the Bank Ladder Match
The Big Show vs. John Cena vs. Chris Jericho vs. Kane
Even though I feel the World Heavyweight Championship MITB match will be the match of the night, I actually feel that this match will give us something to look forward to and something to talk about afterwards. Each of these men has held the WWE Championship before. A few weeks ago, I made a prediction that Rey Mysterio and The Miz would throw their names into this match as well, to make it a 6 man. But hey, it’s still not too late though. 3 out of the 4 in this match have had MITB experience, John Cena is the only one to have never been in this match before. I’m sure it has happened, but I can’t even think off the top of my head when it was the last time that Cena was actually IN a ladder match. If so, please feel free to comment below and tell me! It’s an interesting twist that WWE decided to go this route with this match. Since each of them are former WWE Champions, just how invested are we in the winner of this match? I mean, Kane has won the MITB match before in 2010 and cashed it in that night to win the WHC, so not sure if history will repeat itself. Jericho has never won the match and neither has The Big Show. Not too certain if championship gold is on the radar of Jericho. You put him in a quality program to put someone over, that bigger than a title in my opinion. Cena is the wild card and he has informed us many times that he “WILL WIN” the MITB match. Unfortunately, I can’t see Cena carrying around that title for a year, especially since Cena doesn’t need a gimmick to give him a gateway to the title where all he has to do is send a text message to the boss, and VIOLA! Your wish is granted. The Big Show has given us a different mean streak that we have never seen before from him and since it’s still fresh, I’m sure that the WWE would want some additional mileage from in, as he can really raise hell and put fear in the eyes of whomever the WWE champion is. And, more importantly, I don’t think we’ve seen the end of the heavy duty ladder yet.
Winner: The Big Show.
The WWE Championship Match
CM Punk (C) vs. Daniel Bryan (Special Guest Referee: AJ)
4 words: Let. This. Angle. END! Even though this angle has been alive since April 30th 2012, which is essentially 2.5 months, it has felt like 2.5 years. I am believing that this angle was put together to keep Punk busy up until the buildup for Summer Slam, but geez the last couple of weeks, this has been kind of painful to watch. I wouldn’t dare say Punk has taken a fall from grace since his epic promo on June 27th 2011, but this has been a helluva turn around for him. Last year, Punk went into MITB with a fury of fire and rage as he lashed out against John Cena and what the WWE represents. He was the face of anti-establishment, rebellion and counter culture, which made MITB 2011, must see TV. Going into MITB 2012, Punk has told us that he “digs crazy chicks”, told AJ he “cares for her” and most importantly, put the option of “marriage” on the table for AJ. My how far we have come. The bigger focus of this match is, “Who will AJ leave MITB with”, not “Who will be the WWE Champion”? Daniel Bryan is the heartbroken ex-boyfriend vying for his ex’s attention back as he is remorseful of the mistreatment h put her through. And Punk is that strapping new guy that is trying to let AJ know that Bryan is not good for her. While AJ herself is playing mind games with both the men. I think for the answer to that question, you will need Perez Hilton to bring clarity to that. As far as the wrestling match, I do believe this is the end of the storyline with both Punk and Bryan. I wish that Vince did not feel it was necessary to inject both Kane and AJ into their story, because their first match at WWE Over The Limit was a contender for match of the year (2012) and I wanted more. But I feel this angle will end on Sunday with Punk leaving with the title, and in my opinion, set his sights on his journey to Summer Slam as he prepares to be challenged…by the GREAT ONE!
Winner: CM Punk
WWE Money In The Bank is live Sunday July 15th 2012 8 pm EST/ 5 pm PST live on PPV
Maurice D. Proffit is a writer for Rant Sports