Traditionally one of the more notable WWE PPVs of the year (and one of the big four if you ask Bill Simmons), WWE Money in the Bank seems to always have a buzz surrounding it. Whether it be the soon-to-be rise of The Miz in 2010 to the thrilling CM Punk saga of 2011, Money in the Bank has been the launching point for numerous careers and characters. This year is no exception and in many ways, could become the biggest launch yet with the WWE Championship up for grabs in an 8-man Ladder Match. Not only are the stakes high but the competitors involved range from established stars like Randy Orton and John Cena to rising up and comers such as Roman Reigns and Cesaro. Could we see the dawn of a new era with Roman Reigns as the next babyface star or will Bray Wyatt win his first championship? Hey, maybe they’ll go with the safe pick John Cena… what about Sheamus? There’s a definite buzz surrounding the main event because we really don’t know. We know a few guys it won’t be but as far as winners, anyone but Kane and maybe Alberto Del Rio have a legitimate chance.

Elsewhere, the destruction of The Shield continues as Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose square off as apart of the Money in the Bank match, Paige defends her Divas Championship against Naomi and The Wyatt Family (Luke Harper and Erick Rowan) look for tag team gold against The Usos. Here are our staff’s thoughts on each match as well as predictions!

Divas Championship
Paige vs. Naomi

Rich Kraetsch: The inevitable Naomi/Cameron feud is on the horizon and while the title would add some steam to it, I can’t see them making the change here. If anything, Cameron will cost Naomi the title (accidentally or purposefully) and that can kick start it. Paige is still the top woman until further notice and it’s the best idea to continue her run as champion.

Prediction: Paige

Joe Lanza: Despite talk that the powers that be are not enamoured with Paige, I think it’s too early to throw in the towel. With that said, it’s the Divas title, so to the company it doesn’t really matter, and as a result attempting to analyze things from that perspective is pointless. Full disclosure: I have no idea whether Naomi is the “Melina vs Alicia Fox” ‘dactyl, or the ‘dactyl with the enormous ass.

Prediction: Paige

Bryan Rose: The only interesting thing in this match is that they’ve been building a Funkadactyls split up for a couple of week. Since usual WWE protocol calls for teasing a split for weeks until people become bored and they drop it, no, I don’t expect for Cameron to fully turn on Sunday. I think she might cost Naomi the title inadvertently, though. The match itself I don’t think will be bad, since they had an alright match on Main Event a few weeks ago. I don’t expect it to have any heat, though. How are they supposed to get any the way they’re pushed on WWE programming?

Prediction: Paige

Taylor Mitchell: Paige is without a doubt the best diva to be spotlighted in the WWE ever. period. She is absolutely fantastic. Naomi has been known to put together some decent matches. With the small match card of this PPV I am hoping that Paige is finally given some time to show off her talent. I have long been the guy that could care less about the Diva’s division and would hardly watch their matches. Paige, Emma, and Charlotte have changed that. I think Sara Del Ray deserves a great deal of credit for the work she has been doing in NXT. Paige wins here.

Prediction: Paige

Goldust & Stardust vs. Curtis Axel & Ryback

Rich: Who has the gall to pick Curtis Axel & Ryback? I dare one of you to do it, I dare you. You’d be insane, it’s going to be “The Brotherhood” in a relative squash. I somewhat enjoy Axel & Ryback as the monster jobbers and I hope they keep them around forever but they don’t have a prayer Sunday.

Prediction: Goldust & Stardust

Joe: “The Brotherhood” sounds like a biker gang. Looks like a push is coming for Goldust & Paul Stanley, so that’s my pick.

Prediction: Goldust & Stardust

Bryan: I have no idea why Rybaxel would win here. Goldust/Stardust is the new team they want to push, so everything should go their way here, maybe for a tag title match at SummerSlam. Match overall should be fine, or maybe even good.

Prediction: Goldust & Stardust

Taylor: I don’t know if I am the only one. But, I am so stoked about the Stardust character. I have always dug Cody Rhodes as a performer. His “Dashing” character was good. The way he then transitioned from Dashing into the masked character post-Rey Mysterio-nosebreak was compelling, and his work after that as just himself was good for what he was handed. When Cody andGoldust teamed up they were a breath of fresh air for the tag division. But, with all of that said I LOVE the stardust character, and Cody is a guy who totally immerses himself into a gimmick/storyline. Stardust is like a mixture of Goldust – The Joker – and Robin. Cody obviously reads comic books and I am excited for the future of this team. As far as Rybaxel goes, well. They’re there. Curtis Axel has slightly improved in-ring. His mic work still sucks. Ryback has been downhill since his feud with Punk over the title and has yet to fully recover.

Prediction: Goldust & Stardust (who will hopefully have a new tag team name. The Brotherhood didn’t do it for me)

 

Money in the Bank Ladder match for a WWE World Heavyweight Championship contract
Bad News Barrett vs. Dean Ambrose vs. Dolph Ziggler vs. Jack Swagger vs. Kofi Kingston vs. Rob Van Dam vs. Seth Rollins

Rich: I was actually considering making a darkhorse pick for Barrett but with him out, there’s no debate here, no intrigue, Seth Rollins is winning and winning handidly. This should be a lot of fun no matter who Barrett is replaced with. Ambrose is a monster and will no doubt play up his ongoing feud with Rollins, who is also a supreme worker. Ziggler is going to bump his ass off, Swagger is a sleeper in these types of matches, Kofi speaks for himself and depending on how much Icy Hot they have backstage, RVD can muster up a few spots. I’m really looking forward to this.

Prediction: Seth Rollins

Joe: Too bad Barrett is out, because he’s developed into one of the better & more consistent workers on the roster. If this were old school booking, Ambrose would win so that the heels look like dopes for putting him in the match.

Prediction: Seth Rollins

Bryan: Not much competition for Seth Rollins here, honestly. The main focal point will most certainly be the Rollins/Ambrose dynamic. The match overall I think is going to be great. Ziggler will bump his ass off in a match he doesn’t have a chance of winning. Kofi Kingston will do one spot everyone loves, then is back losing on Superstars the next night. Swagger and RVD are irrelevant but RVD will at least do a cool spot. Barrett I don’t even think is in the match anymore after Tuesday’s tapings, unfortunately. Rollins is the one with the big push so he wins it here.

Prediction: Seth Rollins

Taylor: The obvious answer is Rollins. The only other option I could see would be Barrett or possibly Ambrose. Barrett is out and Ambrose doesn’t need the briefcase right now. Rollins might be too obvious, but he is also the RIGHT person to win. I honestly wish he would have been involved in and won the WWE title MitB match.

Prediction: Seth Rollins

WWE Tag Team Championship
The Usos (c) vs. The Wyatt Family

Rich: We know what we’re getting here, it’s going to be good but it’s predictable. Again, that’s not a bad thing but I have a hard time being too excited for this match. With that said, it’ll be a lot of fun, The Usos will dive out of the ring, Harper will dive out of the ring, they’ll have some cool tag sequences and in the end, I don’t know, I’m feeling a Wyatt Family title victory here.

Prediction: The Wyatt Family

Joe: People talk about this supposed great year the Usos are having, and while I like them just fine, I’d love for somebody to point out a single great match they’ve had. They seem to have the same decent match over and over, but have yet to do anything great. This might be their best chance. Seems like a good time to do a title switch, too. Maybe these teams swap the titles back & forth through the summer.

Prediction: The Wyatt Family

Bryan: These four always have great matches and they’ll probably have another great one given the time. I think a title change is in the cards here. the Usos are great, but the Wyatts will probably be better off with the titles under this situation right now. I think it doesn’t matter much in the end, but we’ll see.

Prediction: The Wyatt Family

Taylor: I am intrigued by the potential dynamic of the Wyatt family holding titles. They have always seemed like an act that didn’t need or want championships. Bray Wyatt made sense of it with his speech on Raw a couple of weeks ago in regards to his entry in the MitB title match. I feel like the WWE tag division needs a jolt of freshness and to continue this feud the Wyatts should go over. I’m going with the risky choice.

Prediction: The Wyatt Family

Ladder match for the vacant WWE World Heavyweight Championship
Alberto Del Rio vs. Bray Wyatt vs. Cesaro vs. John Cena vs. Kane vs. Randy Orton vs. Roman Reigns vs. Sheamus

Rich: To me, there’s only a few logical choices here. Roman Reigns is not one of them. It’s far too early and him winning now isn’t the story WWE likes to tell with their next big stars. Reigns will be given the “overcome the odds” / “chase to the big event” story, not a flash title win out of nowhere. Alberto Del Rio, forget it. Cesaro, eh not yet. Randy Orton god no. Kane, c’mon? Sheamus, very doubtful. That leaves John Cena and Bray Wyatt. Cena would be the obvious pick given his security blanket status but him winning muddies the future far too much. What do you do when Bryan comes back, how does the title get to Reigns (if it eventually does)? I guess the easy money in Cena wins, goes to SummerSlam, Brock wins then you transition to a babyface from there but that seems too easy. Wyatt works as a transitional heel champion, it’s something different and it adds a spark to his character and the young block of WWE. Does that mean they’ll do it? I don’t think so. I’m going with the security blanket here in what should be a fun but not nearly as spectacular match as the MITB earlier in the night.

Prediction: John Cena

Joe: Too soon for Roman, they aren’t going back to Orton, Sheamus is there just because (he’s like the Hirooki Goto of WWE), the timing isn’t right or Cesaro, and Alberto Del Rio has no business even being in this thing. So it comes down to Cena, Kane, & Wyatt. Cena makes a ton of sense. Kane makes sense if the plan is to put it back on Bryan (and if they want the internet to explode). Wyatt makes sense because he’s the top heel and over like a top face. He annoys the shit out of me to the point I skip his segments, but why not Wyatt?

Prediction: Bray Wyatt

Bryan: A few days ago this one was a tough one to pick, but now it really isn’t. del Rio doesn’t have a chance, nor does Sheamus. Orton’s irrelevant, as is Kane. Cesaro I don’t think is happening. Wyatt, same thing, though he has a better chance than Cesaro. That boils down to Reigns and Cena. I’d like to see Reigns win, but then you’d have to consider the SummerSlam main event. In that case, Cena/Lesnar sounds a lot better than Reigns/Lesnar (at least for now) so Cena pretty much has to win this match for WWE title #15. Seriously. I wish that they didn’t go there, and really they could just do a singles match not for the title, but I think they’ve been pushing for a Lesnar title match for forever now, so I guess there’s no other option but for Cena to win it. Should be a good match, probably great.

Prediction: John Cena

Taylor: I am definitely ADR’s biggest fan. The dude has so much talent that no one ever gives him credit for, but even I think he is the wrong person to win this. John Cena doesn’t need to win this and shouldn’t. If Kane wins I give up on holding any prestige to the WWE title. Cesaro could be a shocking winner, but I doubt it.  I really, really hope the WWE doesn’t think it would be a good idea to give Bray Wyatt the title right now. It would be shocking, but that doesn’t mean it would be good. Sheamus has quietly been putting on some of the best matches in the WWE lately, but it wouldn’t make sense for him to win it. Orton winning would be the WWE taking a major step back. That leaves us with Reigns. Is Reigns ready to carry the WWE title and hold his own in main event PPV matches? I don’t think so. Not yet. His in-ring work has improved. His promos have been really good since they’ve been kept short, serious, and tough. As long as down the road he can keep evolving in those areas he will be a long term star. The WWE is behind him, I don’t agree that he is entirely ready for the role just yet. I like the idea of Rollins feuding with Ambrose and then cashing in the briefcase to feud with Reigns. I’m taking another risky pick. It feels like the WWE is going with a “youth movement”, but want to go with “their guy” rather than “our guy” aka Daniel Bryan.

Prediction: Roman Reigns