Did not see Damien Sandow winning the blue briefcase. It really seemed like WWE was behind Barrett as the next guy on Smackdown (after Zigler), but the smart Sandow could sit for a while with the briefcase, especially since we get the Rhodes Scholars explode at Summer Slam. Oh and Michael Cole called the spinning ladder spot "innovative". In Philly.
Miz v. Axel - The most over guy out there was Paul Heyman. Hopefully this ends his program with Miz. Can't stand his bridging Figure Four. But since LA is his home town, I'm sure he'll be on Summer Slam.
Divas Title - See above. Please let this program be over. The Black Widow is an awesome hold. I'm guessing we get a tie in with the reality show at Summer Slam. Elimination match?
No complaints on Ryback vs. Jericho. Jericho puts over a new guy on his way off to his summer Fozzy tour.
Dolph vs. Del Rio - Natural progression is a cage match at Summer Slam. Guess that means another month of Del Rio with the gold and this feud that will not end.
Henry vs. Cena - Predictable aside from Cena not finishing him off with the AA. Still, great job by Mark Henry if this was his last hurrah.
Red MITB - Orton was my pick, I just expected this before Cena/Henry and for him to cash in. Great match and looks like Punk caught an edge of the ladder from Heyman because if that was a blade job, he did it for no one but the live crowd. I caught what was looking like a .5+ Muta for maybe 2 seconds on camera. Sheamus going through the ladder was an awesome visual.
The best buy in wrestling continues with another proud addition to the Money in the Bank legacy. Great show for action, on par with and maybe better than Payback. The one thing missing from this year's show is a briefcase winner to be really excited about being a breakthrough world champion (Ziggler, Bryan, Miz back when everyone was excited for him). Randy Orton won the WWE case and Damien Sandow of all people won the World case in two great matches that were more about shooting angles for dramatic turns with Paul Heyman on CM Punk and Sandow on Cody Rhodes.
The all-heels idea for the World match couldn't have worked better -- all 7 guys were actually treated as babyfaces, even Swagger who got We The People chants. Story of the match was Cody Rhodes making this valiant stand, fighting through everybody including the interfering Shield, and basically turning face through gusto, only to have Sandow sneak in and steal the case from him. For a midcard comedy heel act, there was some real drama in this betrayal -- in perfect accidents(?), Cody and Punk were both left bleeding. I think Sandow's awesome, but it's kind of weird to think of him as a future world champion. Maybe his more serious side in the feud with a top guy like Sheamus won him some support. Or it could be designed for Cody to chase the case as a face and reclaim it.
Seek out the gif: of Ambrose skinning the cat of a ladder being held horizontally by Cesaro and Swagger.
Randy Orton won the WWE case. Daniel Bryan went on one of his giant offensive flurries and was poised to win, but Curtis Axel stopped him to ostensibly help Punk. Punk GTS'd him instead, then Paul came out to chastise Axel. As Punk was about to win, Heyman hit him with another ladder and then dramatically smashed him in the face with it in a scene out of a mafia movie (but with ladders. and wrestlers.). Orton RKO'd RVD off the ladder to win. Van Dam was really over in his return and basically looked like the same old (but old) RVD. The other guys in the match appeared less than thrilled at times to be taking some of his not-so-controlled frenzy offense. Sheamus took a wild bump off the top through a ladder across the apron and announce table.
So, Orton as MITB holder. Doesn't necessarily mean Bryan, who was booked strong in the match, won't still be headlining SummerSlam with Cena, as Randy could chill with it for a while. I could see it eventually being used in his long-awaited heel turn, even if vulnerable cash-ins are now more or less treated as cool face moves.
Ziggler and Del Rio had a great match before the DQ finish in the third big break-up angle of the night. AJ came out at the end of the match to help Dolph but he shooed her away. Del Rio was about to kick Dolph's head off again and AJ ran into the ring to save his life -- except Dolph blocked the kick and would've had the Zig-Zag if AJ hadn't hit Del Rio with the women's title first. Big heat on AJ for screwing it up. Ziggler was superb in his first significant match as a babyface in his life, really over and working great, shades of Shawn Michaels after the turn in '95. Looks like Ziggler vs. Big E for SummerSlam, so who would that leave Del Rio to work with? Sheamus, again? Rey, again? Big Show, again?
John Cena and Mark Henry went second from the top, which I think is the first time Cena's match has gone on before anybody but Brock Lesnar or the Rock since ........ September 2011? Match was a well-done Hogan vs. A Large Man layout with strong heat (Henry cheered big, Cena booed big). Henry kicked out of the AA, Cena out of the WSS, Henry eventually tapped to the STFU.
Axel/Miz, AJ/Kaitlyn, and Jericho/Ryback (where Ryback won with a schoolboy, continuing his run as a Sneaky Monster) weren't anything special, but Shield vs. Usos in the pre-show was very good stuff.
The Wyatts did not appear except in a recap of Monday. Vickie Guerrero served on the panel of analysts.
The Kaitlyn/AJ match was quite disappointing in the end. The feud was nicely set up and they had a really fun match at Payback, so I was hoping they'd step up and try to go one step higher. Maybe Kaitlyn's elbow injury is legit and that's why they couldn't go. I couldn't help but notice that AJ's also from the Mr. Perfect-Shawn Michaels-Dolph Ziggler school of pinball selling.
The crowd was super hot for the opener, and Cody Rhodes might have turned face just through sheer effort and willpower.
Originally posted by JustinShapiroAs Punk was about to win, Heyman hit him with another ladder and then dramatically smashed him in the face with it in a scene out of a mafia movie (but with ladders. and wrestlers.)
This is the perfect description of that. It was exactly what I was thinking at the moment. Also, the drama of them staring into each others' eyes, with their history, right before the coup de grace? Fantastic! Heyman and Punk have a real talent for theatrics.
Bryan had the best series of spots in the all-star MitB, though I felt the other match was more engaging. The all-star match was more along the lines of a Royal Rumble, where everyone gets to run wild on everyone else in turn. The WHT ladder match had a more chaotic structure and somehow felt more dynamic. High drama in both matches, and a high quality of work, though. Plus the crowd was great for both matches.
Ziggler/Del Rio was probably going to be your match of the night before the screwy finish. The crowd was WAY into Ziggler, which is always a good sign. Del Rio, for all the talk about his stale character and on-again, off-again promo skills, is a FANTASTIC wrestler, and one of the few in the WWE main event scene whose big matches feel like big matches without devolving into finisher-fests.
The crowd carried Mark Henry and Cena to a good but not great match. I loved the story within the match - Cena fighting for the AA and not getting it because Mark is just too heavy. The the twist - he gets the AA and he still can't put him away. Good stuff. I'd have literally accepted ANY OTHER finish than Cena's super shitty STF, but I guess that's part of the package.
Also, Big Show looked rather snazzy in his vest. I wonder if Samoa Joe can borrow some stuff from his wardrobe in his current run in the Main Event Mafia.
Just got home a little while ago from the show, it was pretty fun overall. Here's some scattered, random thoughts:
RVD chants abound, even before the pre-show tag match. They replayed one of his video packages at 1 point and the crowd went nuts. And he looked pretty good in the MITB match itself. His new shirt was on-sale, with a special "Philadelphia July 14, 2013" line on the back.
It was a really fun show, even if I didn't like a lot of the outcomes.
Both MITB matches had an awkward ladder moment at the end. Sandow gave a look like he was so smart for how he won, then completely whiffed the grab for the briefcase. Orton took what felt like a five minute look around ("Is that everyone? Did I forget anyone? How about a run-in? No? OK!") before finally winning in anticlimactic fashion.
Solid effort out of everyone. I give a slight edge to the WHC MITB match over the WWE one, but hey that one had the young guys. Bummed there was no replacement for Kane, but the match ended up being too crowded anyway.
We were able to fast forward through the Maddox segment, thanks to some earlier pausing. No idea how that made the show.
I finally see why everyone thinks Mark Henry is so awesome.
(edited by SchippeWreck on 14.7.13 2215) "It's magic! We don't need to explain it!"
Ladies and gentlemen, the following public service message is brought to you by your friends from D-Generation X, who would like to remind each and every one of you that if you're not down with that, we've got two words for you... Unlike the OP, Sandow was my dark horse, "WWE will book him to win if they're smart and not lazy" pick to win the blue briefcase all along. I too thought someone like Barrett or Rhodes was more likely, but Sandow winning doesn't come out of nowhere for me. When they care enough about him to actually give him a storyline and not leave him treading water (as with the Sheamus "feud"), Sandow is the most interesting heel on the roster, and he was certainly the one of the seven in the match with the most untapped potential at the moment. (And before you start to bring up Cesaro as far as potential goes, he's not quite ready yet. He's getting there, but Cesaro needs to solidify a main-event-credible character - which Sandow has had from the moment he walked back in to the E - before moving up. Pairing him with Dutch is certainly helping him, but he needs to sustain it for a while.)
I guess the red briefcase was Orton's reward for being a good soldier through all the jobs he did to progress the Team Hell No angle along. (And it's kind of a good thing in retrospect that Bryan didn't win the briefcase, because Bryan is at the point where he SHOULDN'T need the briefcase to earn his way into a main event title match - I certainly don't expect Orton to cash in for a one-on-one match with Cena at Summerslam, so Cena/Bryan is still very much a realistic possibility.) Orton's also a guy who's bulletproof enough to take a loss on his cash-in, which they really need to do soon with someone who can afford it (i.e., not Sandow) so the fans don't continue to assume it's an automatic win. (And before you point to Cena, remember he won by DQ.)
smark/net attack Advisory System Status is: Elevated (Holds; June 18, 2006) While the switch from Cena to RVD should alleviate some complaints, the inevitability of the belt's return to Cena (note where Summerslam is this year) and the poor initial showing by the new ECW are enough to keep the indicator where it is for now. The pieces are in place, though, especially on RAW, for improvements to be made to the IWC's psyche in the near future.
I don't how many months they're going to continue this "panel of experts" experiment, but I'm ALMOST starting to pine for the return of God-awful backstage vignettes between matches. Almost.
RVD did Rolling Thunder and nobody on the commentary team said "ROLLING THUNDER!"
The Cena story was so predictable - which usually isn't a bad thing, but the whole "he can't AA him!" is so implausible when we've seen him AA Big Show on multiple occasions. It was nice that when he finally DID AA him, that wasn't the finish - except nobody should have expected this as the finish because their "main event" checklists would clearly have reflected that Cena hadn't kicked out of a WSS yet, so there was no way the match was over. Although Cena won with the STF, in a sense the REAL finish was yet another FU - not the move now known as the AA but more like an FU to all the fans long tired of these Cena main events, yet another incident of Cena somehow overcoming what we are told are nearly impossible odds, yet who's buying it? (I should try out for the Yahoo! Contributor Network!)
I still liked this show, though! Just....man, Cena main events can be tough to sit through, even with a beloved opponent such as Mark Henry.
Sure wish they'd just let the unintentional blood flow now and again instead of immediately getting with the sanitary gloves and goo.
I feel like the Heyman promo tomorrow better be good/make sense? (As if my expectations weren't already automatically raised on account of it being Heyman...)
I am disappointed by most of the outcomes. Good for San Dow and Axel. Trying to make Cena/Orton into Rock/Cena or Savage/Hogan is stupid. They don't click well and it feels played out even though they haven't feuded in years. I am sure Bryan gets the SummerSlam spot, but he will lose in a valiant fashion never to see the main event again or Nash comes back kills D-Bry then Orton cashes it in. Punk/Lesnar has to be on this card. Poor Kate and Women's division not that she is out.
The Wee Baby Sheamus.Twitter: @realjoecarfley its a bit more toned down there. A bit.
Originally posted by Horsemen4everMiz v. Axel - The most over guy out there was Paul Heyman. Hopefully this ends his program with Miz. Can't stand his bridging Figure Four. But since LA is his home town, I'm sure he'll be on Summer Slam.
Miz is from Cleveland.
SANDOW! WHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! I am all for elevating both Rhodes Scholars. Cody has really grown on me.
"As you may have read in Robert Parker's Wine Newsletter, 'Donaghy Estates tastes like the urine of Satan, after a hefty portion of asparagus.'" Jack Donaghy, 30 Rock
I enjoyed it for the most part, but the match results didn't always fill me with excitement. Both MITB matches were really good (I enjoyed the first more than the second) but Orton winning was a huge ant-climax.
I sincerely hope Orton isn't being positioned for a feud with Cena for SummerSlam. I have a sinking feeling they're gonna wind up doing a three-way with Cena-Orton-Bryan, instead of just going with the match everyone wants to see (Cena vs Bryan). I also hope they're not planning a Bryan vs Axel feud. The Heyman turn was well done, and Punk-Lesnar should be awesome.
Sandow winning surprised me. I don't buy him as a world champion yet, but they have time to change my mind before he cashes in. The Rhodes de facto face turn was awesome. I don't know if it was planned or just something that happened organically, but a face Rhodes vs heel Sandow feud could be good.
Wasn't crazy about Henry tapping out as it pretty much means the end of his title chase, which I was enjoying. It was a good match though. One of Henry's best even.
The AJ-ference in the Ziggler-Del Rio match was predictable and a really uninspired finish to a really good match, but I guess it accomplished what it needed to.
The undercard was okay. Jericho-Ryback was decent thanks to Jericho being Jericho, Miz-Axel lost all of its heat once Heyman got booted but wasn't terrible or anything, the divas match was passable, if nowhere near as good as their match last month.
It'll be interesting seeing Face Cody which we haven't seen since he was a rookie teaming with Spark Plug Holly. Can he pull it off? Will he pull his mustache off? Dusty Rhodes is right there on NXT. I think him having backstage father & son talks about being betrayed by partners and friends for fortune needs to happen right MEOW.
I have no idea how lowering your kneepad makes a superkick stronger. I did like that after countering Ziggler instinctively went for the Zig Zag but because AJ-ference was too fast Ziggler did his move to pure air. It looked like an animation glitch in those horrible WWE games.
Did anyone else catch JBL say "What Mark Henry did wasn't even an offensive move, it was just......MONKEY BUTT UGLY." Holy Freudian Slip JBL!
Crowd chants "RVD" at the beginning of the match. Rob very proud of the reaction he's getting gestures to himself. "Hey guys nice to see ya. I'm R-" *stomp, kick, punch*
The Diva's match wasn't too bad to me. Aj really made the match for me with her superselling, mannerisms, and the one submission she did where she put Kaitlyn in a hammerlock while wrapping her leg with her other leg in a spooning position and.... caressing her cheek with her cheek....
.... Oh hey! So how bout that Orton win guys!? I feel like going back down the road with Orton v. Cena just feels too soon. Their last feud felt like it grinded on for a decade. I truly do not want to see them go at it for months again.
(edited by CruelAngel777 on 15.7.13 1126) I believe in The Shield....
I just came back from vacation and walked into Orton winning the big briefcase. Oof! I'm willing to offer the benefit of the doubt and see what the plan is after Raw, but I can't imagine they'd go back to the Cena/Orton well again.
More shocking is Sandow getting the other briefcase. I love the guy, I really do! But he's coming off a completely one-sided beatdown of a feud against Sheamus and a year in which he and Cody Rhodes were basically used as enhancement talent. I have no reason to believe he isn't going to get the Dolph Ziggler "job endlessly for 9 months and back into a world title win" treatment, either. Are they this determined to prove that wins and losses don't matter?
Very interested in Raw tonight, so this PPV at least accomplished that goal.
Good show, but still get pissed off when wrestlers take their sweet time on top of the ladder, look around, pretend to struggle with it.
I don't know what they can do to make it seem more real, because it just seems like one of the fakest parts of the fake sport. I gave up counting all the times a guy could just grab the briefcase if he was really trying hard.
I ended up going 5 and 3 here, mostly because I just really wanted Henry to grab the belt and drop it later that night. When Cena/Henry went on before the last MitB match, it got a little less unpredictable at that point.
AJ works her ass off. Ziggler's influence is showing. Now why can't we get a big Big E push to match?
Lots and lots of blood last night - is the office mad?
Other than Y2Js commentary, the best part of the night was the RUN NXT shirt. Seems like they are making it up a LOT as they go along, with no real long term plans. I still like the camera angles better than the traditional hard camera.