The WWE Money in the Bank 2017 Analysis features our thoughts on the first-ever women’s MITB Match, the debut of Maria and Mike, and much more!
Women’s MITB Match
It took a good 12 years, but the women finally got the chance to have their own Money in the Bank Ladder Match. I wish I could say that they put their own stamp on the match, but unfortunately, this match just wasn’t very good. I should have known the moment that Charlotte’s music hit to open the show that WWE was going to find a way to screw this up and they certainly did. Putting what was considered to be the most anticipated match on first is never a good sign.
I will say that what the ladies did in the match had nothing to do with how bad it was. It was more a situation where I was just starting to get into the match and it was over. You could tell that they were a little timid on hitting each other with the ladder and taking any high falls, but they were really starting to get going as the match came to an abrupt and fairly anti-climactic end.
James Ellsworth played into the finish as he took advantage of all the fallen women to go up and grab the briefcase. He then dropped it to Carmella and we had our first Ms. Money in the Bank. For months, I’ve been saying that Carmella has been underutilized so I was happy that she was the winner, but I wish this match would have been given at least another 10 minutes. What should have felt like a historic moment ended up feeling like an afterthought.
The Usos Escape With Their Titles
I didn’t have high expectations for the SmackDown Tag Team Championship Match pitting The New Days against The Usos. I think the build was pretty lackluster to me and I thought this would be another quick tag match just thrown on the show. I was surprised to find that this might actually have been the best or second-best match on the entire card. This brings me to my new words of wisdom: don’t judge a wrestling match by its build-up.
It was Kofi and Big E in this match for The New Day with Xavier on the outside. I always like the way they alternate members, it always makes their matches seem fresh. What I really enjoyed about this match was how much action there was. These guys seemed to really want to put on the best show that they possibly could. There were tons of near falls and I thought both teams were going to take the victory multiple times in the match. ultimately, The Usos got fed up with it and got counted out by leaving through the crowd.
It looks like this feud will continue and if we get another match like this one, I’m all for it. I would like to see some different stuff in the Tag Division, though. Why not have a 3-way tag match? Elimination Tag? Just something to freshen things up from the steady stream of 2 on 2 one fall matches. That’s part of what made tag team wrestling so good in the early 2000s. More variety helps.
Lana Surprises Everyone
There weren’t many people that expected Lana to have a passable match at MITB. Most people wrote her off before ever seeing her wrestle. It’s funny to me how people assume that because we haven’t seen someone on the main roster that they never wrestle. NXT exists for this very reason and that’s exactly where Lana was training for parts of the past year.
This match was by no means a classic, but it proved that Lana isn’t the liability everyone expected her to be. I think that she could have won the title last night and it would have been entirely believable. She had a nice assault going on Naomi’s knee and really looked to be firmly in control for most of the match. If you want to build a character, that’s exactly how you go about doing it.
Naomi would win this match with her new submission move despite a cash-in tease by Carmella. There’s going to be anticipation each week with Carmella holding that contract and I’ll be interested to see exactly when and how she finally cashes it in. I do think it will be sooner than later.
Mike & Maria Kanellis Have Arrived
Mike Bennett and Maria Kanellis showed up at the top of the ramp in their debut to talk about how they wanted to show SmackDown Live the Power of Love. She said The First Lady is back in WWE. Mike will be going by Mike Kanellis and it seems like he’ll be playing a supporting role to Maria which is quite different from anything we’ve seen before. I was a bit confused by their debut and I’m still not sure what to expect yet. A quick 1-minute promo isn’t enough to say whether I think they’ll be successful yet. I will say that I am intrigued and that I hope they don’t get lost in the shuffle.
Jinder Mahal Retains
Going into Money in the Bank, I really wasn’t sure whether Jinder Mahal would retain the title or not. I wasn’t convinced that WWE would give him the ball to run with any longer than a month. Those fears seem to be needless as they’re legitimately running with Mahal as champion and I think that’s a great choice at this point in time. He has no shortage of people to work with and it’s likely his feud with Orton will continue for one more month.
The Singh Brothers ultimately played a pretty large role in this match again as they were ejected from ringside for their hijinx. They would go on to threaten Bob Orton who was sitting at ringside watching the match. This brought Randy over to completely annihilate them in short order. There’s nothing quite as entertaining as watching Randy flip each Singh brother through the air like they’re ragdolls.
Defending his father ended up being Randy’s downfall as he would immediately be hit with the Khallas after returning to the ring for the 3-count. I can see the next match between these two having The Singh Brothers banned from ringside. It’s a logical next step. If that does happen, I hope that Jinder still retains. If he doesn’t, all of this was basically meaningless.
Fashion Files became Fashion Vice this week. It’s a good way of switching it up as it was becoming stale. This week’s was one of the best ones I’ve as they were dressed like the characters on the show talking about forensics based on the stick figure sketch. They even spoke fitting in names from famous Michael Jackson songs near the end for some reason. This whole skit set up a match with the people who trashed their office…The Ascension.
This match was pretty forgettable. Breezango won with a roll-up and there wasn’t much more to it. It quickly wrapped up the whole trashed office story and we’ll probably never hear anything about it again. I still wish The Ascension would be given more to do.
Men’s MITB Match
The Men’s MITB Match was given a lot more time than the women and was full of action. There’s definitely a reason that this one went on last instead of that one. Baron Corbin would attack Nakamura knocking him out of the match until he came back out for the last little bit. The big moment in this match was the battle between AJ Styles and Shinsuke Nakamura. It looked like one of these two guys would win the match until Baron Corbin dumped them both off the ladder and grabbed the briefcase for himself.
I love that Corbin won this match. Everyone wanted AJ or Shinsuke to win, but right now it makes so much more sense to have a guy like Corbin win it. He does what he wants, when he wants. That’s his character and that’s exactly what a MITB holder should be like. I don’t think we’ll see Corbin cash in anytime soon. He’ll likely cash in when a fan favourite wins the title…as in right after.
Overall, it was a good PPV. The people that should have won the MITB briefcase did and we got some decent matches on the side. I didn’t expect much more. I just wish the women would have been given a little bit more of an opportunity to show what they could do.