I watched Money in The Bank with friends, and I give it a thumbs up. Overall, a good show.
Best Match: WWE No DQ match for the WWE Title: Punk/Bryan with AJ as ref
Worst Match: Nothing horrid here, but the match I didn't like all that well was the Ryback vs Curt Hawkins and Tyler Recks
I missed the youtube match, but otherwise, I really liked the show.
The match between Punk and Bryan was outstanding. Great stuff by both these men. I thought Punk was dead meat by the way Bryan was working over his (Punk's ) mid section. I loved the way they worked together. It was the best worked match on the show, in my opinion. AJ did a very good job in her role also. I really enjoyed her in the match, and I am glad she didn't affect the outcome. I figured Punk would retain, and he did. What will AJ do now that Punk has won?
The worst match was Ryback vs Hawkins, and Reks. The match did nothing for me. Of course, Ryback won. He did sell more, but I didn't really like the match.
The rest of the PPV was very good.
The World Title match between Sheamus (C) and Del Rio was very good. Sheamus wins, as I thought he would. I am guessing maybe a title switch at Summerslam. I thought it was cool to see Ziggler try to cash in.
The Smackdown MITB Ladder match, once they got past the botches by Sin Cara mostly, turned into a very, VERY good match. I really enjoyed it. Some of the bumps the guys took had me concerned, but mostly, everyone didn't get too crazy. Christian, Cody, and Ziggler did great jobs. I liked the "scared of heights" spot that Santino did. I am glad Ziggler won the briefcase. I was hoping Ziggler would win. I think he would make an excellent champion.
The Raw MITB Ladder match was also very good. I thought what helped the match was the physical burial of the Big Show with the ladders. Jericho, and John Cena did great jobs in the match. It was good to see Miz back in action, even though, at times he looked a little rusty, but that's to be expected. Kane did a very good job in the match. I really liked the spot near the end where Jericho is on the ladder, and Show is on the ladder, and gives Jericho the WMD punch, and Jericho just falls off. The end where John Cena grabs the briefcase, and breaks it off the rope/chain, thus winning the match, and the briefcase hits Big Show in the head. Great spots.
As for Cena winning the MITB match, I think it could be interesting. Sure, he does not NEED to win it, as well as the other four guys, but if he took advantage of a guy all beat up, and cashed in his opportunity, the company may be able to have him portray him as a tweener. After all, he would be seen as somewhat as a heel by taking advantage of a helpless, fallen competitor. Just saying.
The six woman tag match with Eve, Natalya, Beth Phoenix vs Layla, Snuka, and Kaitlyn was solid, and a fun match. The babyfaces won with Layla pinning Beth.
The Primo and Epico vs O'Neal and Young tag match was a fun match. AW, O'Neal/Young's manager made some funny comments, but the match was just solid. Primo and Epico won the match, and AW had words with Tag Champs Kingston, and R Truth. Truth threw water at AW, and AW wanted to fight. That was amusing, even I thought it strange the babyfaces threw water at the heels.
Overall, I really enjoyed the PPV, and I recommend the replay.
This was a really good show that justified its B-show status still in that the booking hinted toward Summerslam without any clear blowoffs. The wrestling speaks for itself, so my thoughts on the general direction will be shared.
1.) Ziggler winning the Money in the Bank match is a great thing. The match rates approximately as ****1/4. Ziggler is an extraordinary talent who I would rank as a much more superior bump-taker than Curt Hennig was in his prime but as two notches below Hennig when on the offensive, i.e. Hennig could work a rough-and-tumble main event match whereas Ziggler should broaden his horizons a bit to make himself look even more threatening. That notwithstanding, he is in the WWE's elite of workers and should stay there. My concern rests in the WWE's complete lacking of division of labor for midcarders. Should some midcard act be casted as a comedy worker, a rising star, a JTTS, a tough guy? Many make the mistake in thinking comedy workers have no place on the card, and that is incorrect not just from today's standpoint but professional wrestling historically. But it is a serious mistake to book an act as a rising star, a comedy working, and as a JTTS all in the same year? They did that with Ziggler. Will that cause Ziggler to not be seen as a main event act?--probably not since the cream of the crop tend to rise in the wrestling business. But will he be seen as a star?--probably not. Marks have long memories, and the company's lack of direction and care for the win/loss of the midcarders is very low investment. But praise should be given to Michael Cole (or whoever is feeding him those lines) on making the title seem relevant by stating how long one has held it. This was a great match, but I can remember not even a few weeks ago when Sheamus pinned Ziggler in under five minutes. Precedence should be key in wrestling booking.
2.) Sheamus over Del Rio in a strong ***1/2 match. I like Sheamus a lot. Unfortunately, I don't speak with enough wrestling fans to know the perception of Sheamus, but I feel like he is an overexposed act. He is an act who has tremendous PPV presence but comes across as a one-dimensional bore who can beat up people on TV. When I get the time, I would like to see his quarter hour breakdown. But the fighting champion gimmick suits Sheamus well.
3.) The booking of the tag match was schizophrenic. So Epico and Primo win, but O'Neal and Young's mouthpiece, Abraham Washington, still proclaims the team to be number one contenders. But that is hard to execute when (i) the WWE has long made the tag team division irrelevant, and (ii) the WWE has long arbitrarily constructed number one contenders seemingly out of thin air. So by (i) and (ii), basing heel heat off of that - the apparent injustice of it all - is hard to pull when there is no sense of importance to the tag team. But the general direction of giving a tag team some gimmick that is somewhat caricatured and much more dimensoinal than either the stereotypical tag teams or just makeshift teams is a good direction. *3/4
4.) Punk and Bryan have had an excellent series, and AJ's presence only expanded the rivalry. Unfortunately, awesome workrate is not a sufficient condition to draw in casual viewers. Her role has drawn in more viewers and thereby making Punk and Bryan seem like bigger stars. What a match between the two. Both walked away from the match stronger than ever. And AJ's presence did not diminish the match, which I feared she would (either with fast counts or what have you). Her officiating was an aside that gave the match more dimension without detracting from yet another super worked match. ****
5.) Ryback over Hawkins and Reks. I hate how the smarks try to draw an analogue to Goldberg. Though Ryback is similar to Goldberg, he is also much more athletic, can work better, has a better moveset, shows some degree of vulnerability, and has a commanding presence that is sorely lacking with the WWE's current roster. I really hope Ryback gets over and either (i) feuds with Brock Lesnar or (ii) turns heel at some point and feuds with John Cena, with Ryback going over only if there exist enough credible faces to take on him. This was a good match for what it was worth. **
6.) Cena going over is the right move, though given how watered down Punk's character has been in the past year, I feel like there will be a lot of lost information emotionally such that it will be difficult to generate heat between Punk and Cena for their Summerslam match. But again, WWE's schizophrenia causes this because suddenly wins and losses matter (like with last year's MITB, or Washington's attempt at getting heat, or Cole commenting on Punk's lengthy title reign), but their booking of Raw and Smackdown overall show that wins and losses mean nothing (see Ziggler, who is suddenly a borderline main event act despite having been booked as a JTTS for much of the year). So this match that could otherwise do good business might be hard to draw heat. We'll see. Usually, the WWE pulls it off, but even if the WWE pulls it off, their past opportunity costs diminishes the optimization of drawing serious money. For the match itself, ***1/2.
WWE Money In The Bank feedback
Best Match: CM Punk vs Daniel Bryan
Worst Match: Ryback vs Tyler Reks and Curt Hawkins
The show was pretty solid tonight. The opening MITB match was quite good and it was hard to call who would win it. My biggest complaint would be Santino doing comedy in climbing the ladder as it took away from the credibilty of the match for him to not be really trying to get the prestigious briefcase. Otherwise everyone including Santino was really good. Tensai seemed to progress in this match and everyone else was great with Christian and Kidd really shining.
Punk vs Bryan was a very good match and I thought the AJ stuff played into it well. I assume they will do Cena vs Punk at Summerslam but I could watch these guys on every ppv until the end of time.
I also assume that they will do Sheamus vs Del Rio with Ziggler cashing in afterward, it would be nice if they just went with Ziggler vs Sheamus with Sheamus challenging him to back up being such a show-off.
On antother note, AW does come off well as a manager but I don't think they should have him mic'd to the crowd during the match as it really takes away from the wrestling.
Comment: Dave, in your recap you said all of the advertised matches delivered. We must have been watching different shows.
The opening Money in the Bank match was very, very sloppy, to the point that "Botch Cara" was trending in the worldwide on Twitter (no, not a tailored trend.) The last Money in the Bank match was slow and plodding, although I don't disagree with Cena winning. That will create the most interesting television.
And Daniel Bryan/CM Punk was good, but it was their worst match together in the WWE. Too many AJ reaction shots and too many kicks for the sake of getting "YES" chants from the audience. Everything else was disappointing filler with no heat. This show was a letdown.
I give Strikeforce last night a thumbs up, however I am only judging it on the main card as I did not watch the undercard. I liked the mix of recognizable veterans, young talent, and thought both title matches were an added bonus.
Marquardt looked great, as did Woodley, and I would definitely give that best fight. Worst fight for me would go to Gracie vs. Jardine, although I was impressed with Jardine's ability to avoid the submission.
Looking forward to seeing what is next for Marquardt in terms of opponents.
Best Fight: Marquardt vs Tryon Woodley
Worst Fight: Keith Jardine vs Roger Gracie
Definately a good show. I loved the Marquardt vs Woodley fight. That has to be knockout of the year so far for me. The main event was good. I'm really surprised the judges had it 49-46. I gave it 50-45 for Rockhold. For me even round 3 was Rockhold's round. Even though Kennedy got the takedown he really didnt do much with it and Rockhold did get up fairly quickly and really controlled the round with his punches and he continued to move forward for most of the round.
Thumbs down show.
Best match: Woodley vs. Marquardt. First round was among the best of the year.
Worst match: Gracie vs. Jardine. Time for Keith to retire. Beating two world champions is something to be proud of at the end of your career.