All posts tagged Money in the Bank

Lunatic Superstar: The Rise of Dean Ambrose

MITB14_Photo_140-1

Image Credit: WWE.com

“There are three things that will survive a nuclear explosion. Twinkies. Cockroaches. And Dean Ambroses.”

When the Shield disbanded, the man you could possibly fear getting lost in the chaos was Dean Ambrose. Seth Rollins had the (kayfabe) backing of the boss and Roman Reigns has had a rocket strapped to his back for the last few months with strong showings at the Survivor Series & Royal Rumble. Ambrose was the tricky one. Anyone familiar with his independent work know he’s a great talker who works well as a villain, but after Rollins’ unexpected betrayal could Dean Ambrose pull off the sympathetic babyface?

It seemed like a foregone conclusion earlier this year that when the Shield dissolved, Ambrose would get his evil on. But that didn’t happen. Instead of disbanding back around WrestleMania, the Shield naturally eased into the role of fan favorites and Dean adapted his persona just slightly to fit within the Shield’s new paradigm. After Rollins’ fracturing of the Shield I was worried if this Dean Ambrose, wacky bro of Reigns and Rollins, could survive. So far, my fears are unfounded. Judging by the pops the “Lunatic Fringe” has received the past two nights on Money in the Bank & Raw, the WWE Universe agrees.

In the wake of Rollins’ alliance with the Authority, Dean Ambrose has found it. Call it his inner Roddy Piper, but the psychotic but lovable anti-hero persona that Ambrose now embodies could make him into the Next Big Thing.

Now, this might be a lofty comparison, but Dean Ambrose is an “Austin 3:16″ moment away from being a huge deal. Much like the Stone Cold Steve Austin character of the Attitude Era– the guy who beats up his boss on television on a weekly basis, Ambrose has tapped into something that works well for WWE Superstars: his plight is relatable–revenge. People can relate to being screwed over by a friend, be it high school, college, or in the workplace. However, the sane among us stew and don’t take the law into our own hands. Dean Ambrose is embodiment the devil on your shoulder urging you to do those horrible things and think those horrible thoughts.

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The Day After: Raw 6/30/14

Damien McMahondow Image Credit:WWE.com

Damien McMahondow
Image Credit:WWE.com

Did you skip Raw last night out of some misguided protest of John Cena winning his 15th world title?  If so, you missed one hell of a show.  The WWE writers took their Limitless pills sometime on Monday morning.

First of all – Dean Ambrose.  Holy hell, here’s a guy on the cusp of being something special.  He elicits such a genuine response from the crowd whenever he appears on-screen.  The former United States Champion appeared on the Titantron early in the show to let Seth Rollins know that his MITB briefcase contained not a contract, but TNT; whenever the Authority’s… “Chosen One” would attempt to cash it in, Ambrose would be there to thwart the effort.  Foreshadowing.

Rewind to the show’s beginning, which kicked off with the Champ telling the Authority that he preferred the “hard way” rather than being “in their pocket” like Orton, Kane, and Rollins.  Trips then announced that Cena would defend his title at Battleground in a Fatal Fourway against Orton, Kane, and Roman Reigns.  The faces would team against the heels in tonight’s main event.

The show’s grand finale was a great match, with the wrestlers seemingly fired-up by a crowd that had been hot all night.  One of the main purposes of the match served to continue Reigns’ elevation to main-event status.   Battleground will be his second consecutive show-closing match as a pay-per-view star.   At Money In The Bank, it was in an eight-man match.  Now, it will be a four-man match.  He may not be ready to carry the show in a one-on-one capacity quite yet, but the end of Raw last night (keep reading…) showed that day is in the not-too-distant future.

The match’s ending was a means to an end.  Kane hit Cena with a chair to cause a DQ as Orton and Reigns brawled to the back.  The Demon tombstoned the Champ, at which point Hunter waved out Rollins to cash-in.  The crowd popped, eager to see the special moment.  However, the BIG pop came when Ambrose hit the ring and attacked Rollins, fulfilling his promise to blow-up the Architect’s spot.  Crescendo… Kane raises a chair to hit Cena again, but was met with a Spear by Reigns.  Roman let out his battle cry, and stared down Triple H from only a few feet away.  For the first time that I can remember, the crowd chanted “This is Awesome!” as Raw faded to black.

Subtle note: Reigns sprinted back towards the ring.  Orton did not.  Do the math on who won the brawl.

Further – For those keeping score at home, the true stars of last night’s main event were Roman Reigns, Dean Ambrose, and Seth Rollins.  Cena may have the belts, but he does not own the spotlight.

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Money in the Bank: the Day After

source: WWE.com

In case you hadn’t heard, last night was Money in the Bank! Naturally, we at CDW have a few thoughts on what transpired. Don’t care and just want results? Hit the jump for the quick list of all the MITB winners. MITB spoilers below:

1. WWE World Heavyweight Championship Match
Winner: John Cena

Cena somehow defied the odds AGAIN and won his 15th world championship. While in some ways this feels like a return to the status quo, there are always compelling reasons for Cena to win the title, kayfabe or otherwise.

Despite what his t-shirts say, Cena is kayfabe the greatest wrestler in WWE today and thus should be the favorite to win any match. He’s won the most titles and had the biggest moments out of anyone on WWE’s active roster. Breaking the fourth wall, WWE had a very public financial meltdown and it’s two other most bankable stars are out of commission for the foreseeable future. The absence of Daniel Bryan in particular has thrown a major wrench into WWE’s storytelling plans and without a totally viable alternative, the belts reverted back to Cena.

The story should hold until SummerSlam when (if the promo materials are to be believed), Cena will defend the straps against a returning Brock Lesnar, who as you may or may not know, ended the Undertaker’s streak at Wrestlemania XXX.

MITB ended with Cena defiantly hoisting the two title belts in the face of a visibly upset Authority. This is the only potential problem with a Cena title reign. If WWE tries to run the Current Champ vs. Authority storyline with Cena, suspension of disbelief will need to be at an all-time high for it to work. Realistically (since this is the “reality era” and all), there is no reason for the Authority to prefer anyone other than Cena to be WWE champion/face of the company. He represents the company well in the public eye, sells a ton of merchandise, has crossover appeal, and yeah, he can go a little in the ring. Plus, there’s the fact that he IS the face of the company. In real life. The elephant in the room during the entire Randy Orton-Bryan “face of the company” feud is that everyone knows who the real face of WWE is, and it’s neither Orton nor Bryan.

The other big question is what’s next for Roman Reigns? Prior to MITB, signs were pointing to a Reigns-Triple H match at SummerSlam. There’s still time to get there, but with the belts on Cena (another babyface), and Cena seemingly taking control of the feud with the Authority, that leaves Reigns without a clear direction, unless he wants to replace the Usos as Cena’s muscle.

2. Traditional MITB Match
Winner: Seth Rollins

With Bad News Barrett sidelined due to a shoulder injury, it’s no surprise that Seth Rollins (who was billed as the star of the match anyhow) took home the briefcase.

The biggest takeaway from this match is that Dean Ambrose is a star. Dean got monster pops when returning from mid-match injury, beating down Seth Rollins, and nearly winning the match.

Though having Kane run interference to get Rollins the win was a controversial finish, it protected Ambrose, gave him a legitimate claim to Rollins’ briefcase, and ensured that as Rollins ascends to main event status, Ambrose will be right there, hounding him every step of the way. It’s interesting to note that all three members of the Shield have now landed in the main event picture as individual entities. So far, early returns on the Shield breakup are good.

3. Tag Team Title Match
Winner: The Usos

As hot as a curtain-jerker can get, these four guys work great together. The timing felt right for the Wyatt Family to win some gold, but with the emergence of Erik Rowan and Luke Harper as distinct individuals, it’s easy to argue that the Usos need the titles to remain relevant more than the Wyatt Family, as Harper and Rowan represent an intriguing unknown.

Luke Harper continues to be a not-so-secret top wrestler in the company, and don’t think WWE had Rowan take the pin for no reason. Harper is being protected and slowly groomed for BIG things.

Hit the jump for thoughts on the undercard and a quick rundown of the night’s winners! Continue reading →

Money in the Bank Preview

Money in the Bank is only two days away! Always action-packed, this year’s edition should be no different, as there are still two ladder matches, only in addition to a traditional MITB match, the other is for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship! It’ all going down in Boston, MA, so let’s break it down match-by-match:

1. Ladder Match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship
Participants: John Cena, Cesaro, Alberto del Rio, Kane, Randy Orton, Roman Reigns, Sheamus, Bray Wyatt

This was discussed some yesterday here on CDW, but this match could go any number of ways. Six of the eights wrestlers in the match have a legitimate shot at winning the title, depending on the direction WWE wants to go with the belts. If WWE feels it needs a tried-and-true titleholder, Cena, Kane, and Orton are the likely candidates; however, if the time is right for a fresh new face at the top of the card, then suddenly Cesaro, Reigns, and Wyatt become the favorites (sorry ADR and Sheamus).

Prediction: With Daniel Bryan’s status in flux and the WWE’s bottom line suffering, the John Cena security blanket reemerges and the Champ is Here Again. Expect Triple H to interfere, costing Reigns the title and setting up a Triple H-Roman Reigns program to culminate at SummerSlam. Also, a  major shakeup within the ranks of the Authority is looking likely, as Randy Orton and Kane will be in direct competition.

2. Traditional MITB Match
Participants: Dean Ambrose, Bad News Barrett (?), Kofi Kingston, Seth Rollins, Jack Swagger, Rob Van Dam, Dolph Ziggler

With this match built around Seth Rollins, expect him and Dean Ambrose to be the stars of the bout. The makeup of this match is fluid at the moment, as Bad News Barrett injured his shoulder earlier this week. His status for the MITB match is doubtful. It remains to be seen if he will be replaced in the match, compete in a limited role, or the match will roll on with only six competitors.

Curious wrinkle: Seth Rollins begging Triple H to put Dean Ambrose in the MITB match. One possibility is a turn from either Deam Ambrose or Seth Rollins, though either is equally likely. If Roman Reigns wins the title, the Shield could reunite and protect the title with either Ambrose or Rollins holding the briefcase or Ambrose could win the briefcase and cash-in on former ally Reigns. Either way, expecting major movement from the former Shield members.

Prediction: Prior to Barrett’s injury, it looked like BNB was primed to take advantage of the two favorites (Rollins and Ambrose) canceling each other out and win the contract. With Barrett likely out on Sunday, expect Rollins to walk away with the guaranteed title shot.

3. WWE Tag Team Championship Match
Champions: the Usos
Challengers: the Wyatt Family

Clearly the top two tag teams in the WWE today, the Usos and the Wyatt Family have seemingly been at each others’ throats forever. As a reward for their constant toiling, Erik Rowan and Luke Harper have finally earned their first crack at the tag team gold (copper?).

Prediction: Rowan and Harper have been given some separation from their leader Bray Wyatt, getting their own entrance music and more mic time for Luke Harper. It feels like Bray’s minions are about to get their moment out in front. The Wyatt Family wins.

Hit the jump for the undercard and a look at the pre-show! Continue reading →

Afternoon Roundup 6/27/14

ANR
New Matches Added To MITB – f4wonline

Confirmed for Sunday’s Money In The Bank PPV, Summer Rae vs. Layla with special guest referee Fandango, and Big E vs Alexander Rusev.

Win TNA Tickets – TimeWarnerCable

Are you a Time Warner Cable subscriber? Want to win tickets to an upcoming TNA taping in New York City? Getting clicking.

Mick Foley Is A Hogan Fan – SEScoops

Foley took to his Facebook page to explain why he likes Hulk Hogan. Mick has, in the past, shared his dislike and criticism of Hogan’s in-ring style, but growing older can do funny things to you. Now he’s sees more than just the persona, he sees the lives Hogan’s character has touched and the inspiration he has brought to many.

WWE MITB Predictions – wwe.com

The WWE staff is sharing their predictions for this Sunday’s MITB PPV. Stayed tuned to this site as our own Alex Wright will be giving his predictions.

 

 
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