WWE Money In The Bank 2017
June 18, 2017
Scottrade Center
St. Louis, Missouri

Watch: WWE Network

Meet our reviewers:

  • Kelly Harrass: Tonight, Kelly is going to once again revolutionize the way that we rate wrestling matches. We saw it happen once before and it’s happening again. Get ready for the return of the Pop-Tart match rating system. This all depends on if the WWE Network is going to operate like a pile of trash or not. Follow Kelly on Twitter @comicgeekelly.
  • Sean Sedor: Sean is back, only two weeks removed from Extreme Rules, to participate in another WWE PPV review, though he’s a little more excited for this one, since it’s Money In The Bank. You can follow Sean on Twitter @SASedor2994, and you can check out his wrestling reviews blog at http://dxvsnwo1994.blogspot.com.
  • Warren Taylor: Warren is taking one for the team tonight and reviewing a WWE special event. You can praise his courage by following him on Twitter @WarrenETaylor, where you can find links to his articles about University of Kentucky athletics, wrestling, and the absurdities of owning a house rabbit.

The Hype Bros. def. The Colons

Sean Sedor: I think this is the first time that Mojo Rawley & Zack Ryder have teamed (on WWE TV, at least) since the latter went down with an injury late last year. This was a pretty basic tag team affair. The Hype Bros. got the early advantage, The Colons took control (working over Ryder’s previously injured knee), Mojo Rawley got the hot tag, and The Hype Bros. won with the Hype Ryder a short time later. Nothing much else to say. **1/4

Women’s Money In The Bank Ladder Match
Carmella (with James Ellsworth) def. Charlotte, Natalya, Tamina, & Becky Lynch

Kelly Harrass: So this wasn’t the complete mess that it could have been. It also wasn’t what I would call very compelling. Ladder matches are built on crazy stunts and this had very few. In fact, the only dive from Charlotte wasn’t even off of a ladder. I have a hard time saying that this was bad, it was just uninteresting. The work wasn’t bad outside of Tamina. She’s the dirt worst and could have easily been replaced by a sack of potatoes. The ending of the match was stupid, but it was the kind of stupid that I’ve come to expect from this company so it didn’t entirely bother me. From a historical perspective, Ellsworth grabbing the case in the first women’s MITB will not be looked back upon fondly. Ultimately this was bland and unsatisfying. Pop-Tart rating: Unfrosted Blueberry

Sean Sedor: I was actually surprised that this was a relatively safe Ladder Match. I figured someone was going to do at least one crazy stunt (probably Charlotte), but that never happened. That’s not to say it made the match worse, because it was still pretty solid for what it was. Everyone involved had moments to shine (particularly Tamina, who dominated the opening minutes), and the fans seemed into it at points. Despite the hard work of all the competitors involved, the only thing that people will remember about this is the finish. I think it’s hilarious that, before the match, WWE aired this super-serious video package about this being the first Women’s Money In The Bank (which was really good, by the way), only for James Ellsworth to climb the ladder and grab the briefcase for Carmella. I think most people were picking Carmella as a likely winner, but in execution, it just came off horribly, especially for what the company themselves pushed heavily as a historic match. **3/4

Warren Taylor: The history-making women’s Money in the Bank match reminded me of an old song we sang on the school bus on the way to a field trip, the one about taking a bottle of beer off the wall. Except this was let a lady climb the ladder and then yank her back down; the same script that the fellows often follow. That was probably the right call due to the pioneer setting of the scrum, but it didn’t make for an exciting contest. Charlotte’s twisting moonsault to the outside late in the match was certainly impressive, but the finish certainly was not. James Ellsworth retrieving the briefcase for Carmella fits the scope of their act and gives her a needed direction, but it cheapened what should have been a special moment for women’s wrestling. **1/4

WWE SmackDown Tag Team Titles
The New Day def. The Usos © via Count Out

Kelly Harrass: I don’t feel like it’s too far out to say that this was easily the best main roster tag match of 2017 thus far. The Usos are a tremendous heel tag team and the New Day feels fresh again after having them off TV for some time. This match had some fantastic nearfalls and great action throughout. The Usos were never favorites of mine, but this heel run has been great. The entire match really worked for me, even the finish. The countout win for New Day just means that we’ll get another clash between these two teams. This match may have been the most that I actually enjoyed WWE in quite some time. Pop-Tart Rating: Brown Sugar Cinnamon

Sean Sedor: Well this going along swimmingly until the finish. I get that these kinds of finishes are to be expected on brand-split PPVs to extend mid-card title programs, but that count out finish was a flat ending to what was a really good match. There was entertaining action from start to finish, and both teams played their roles very well. The Usos are so good in this heel persona, and this was another perfect example of that, as spent a solid portion of this title bout picking apart Kofi Kingston, who took some bumps that looked more dangerous than anything the women did their Ladder Match. The final few minutes were pretty exciting, but just as The New Day had the SmackDown Tag Team Titles in their sites, The Usos decided to take the count out loss. This is the second SmackDown PPV in a row that saw a title match end in this fashion, and although it was a flat ending (and the second poor finish on this PPV), the action was good enough that I can somewhat forgive the finish. ***1/2

Warren Taylor: Anytime I get to watch Big E spear a man through the ring ropes I will consider a match instantly passable at best. Seeing Kofi Kingston pull a dragon sleeper out of nowhere grabs my attention. The Usos saving themselves and their belts from the brink, including the best WWE near fall of the year, created a fantastic story. One where Rikishi’s progeny became increasingly aware of how outclassed, they were by the New Day. So they took said gold and a count out lose in a finish I feel was an absolutely acceptable way to extend the feud. ***1/4

WWE SmackDown Women’s Title
Naomi © def. Lana

Kelly Harrass: Lana has amazing entrance music. That’s about it really. The match wasn’t terrible, which was a surprise. Lana has potential, but she’s still not there yet. There’s glimpses of a solid wrestler in there, but the transitions need more than a little work. The storytelling in the match was strong with Lana coming out of the blocks strong, but then eventually being cost the victory because of her inexperience. Many, including myself, expected a train wreck. Instead, it was perfectly average. Pop-Tart Rating: Chocolate Mocha

Sean Sedor: So this is Lana’s first singles match on WWE TV, and her first match on a major main roster event (in general) since a multi-person tag on the WrestleMania 32 Kickoff Show. This wasn’t very good, but that really shouldn’t have been a surprise to anyone. Lana did have a few decent/unique moves in her repertoire, but it’s painfully obviously that she’s not a good wrestler. Can she get better? Absolutely, but she’s just not there yet. Lana dominated a good portion of this match, which I can understand a little bit, since they are trying to establish her, but it got to the point that it made Naomi look weak, and that’s not what you want to do to your champion. They did a cash-in tease with Carmella towards the end of the match, but it didn’t happen, and Naomi eventually got Lana to tap out. Nothing else to say about this one. It was what it was. *1/2

Warren Taylor: Lana did a lot of rest of holds like you would expect a novice wrestler to do. She worked Naomi’s leg like I did not expect her to do. Does that make her a good wrestler, I have no clue, and I don’t want to know because she is too good a manager to let that talent go to waste. The way the finish was set up to protect her, it is going to wither away, which I will repeat is a complete travesty.  Naomi winning was the right call in an uneven, unusually worked contest. *3/4

WWE Championship
Jinder Mahal © def. Randy Orton

Kelly Harrass: Can we talk about Jinder’s nipples for a second? He’s jacked everywhere, except for his fat nipples. It’s weird. He’s got tiny man boobs at the bottoms of his pecs. Once I noticed them, it’s all I could see for the rest of the match. Setting aside my nipple fixation, I thought this was a good match. They worked a methodical pace and it worked well for both men. This match felt like a throwback to a match from the era of the legends that were sitting in the front row. Once again, the Singh Brothers were absolutely indispensable. The two took one hell of a beating from Randy and played their roles fantastically. Ultimately, this was a solid house show main event. Pop-Tart Rating: Cookies and Cream

Sean Sedor: Greg Gagne, Larry “The Axe” Hennig, Baron von Raschke, Sgt. Slaughter, “Cowboy” Bob Orton, & Ric Flair were the “St. Louis Wrestling Legends” sitting at ringside for this one. Orton got a MASSIVE reaction from his hometown crowd. I honestly can’t remember the last time Orton was that over. The action in this one was pretty standard. They told a decent story with Mahal methodically going after Orton’s knee, even locking in the Figure Four at one point. Then we got essentially the same finish as Backlash, but tweaked a little bit. The Singh Brothers got thrown out after they got Mahal’s foot on the ropes after a RKO from Orton. They then antagonized the legends (particularly Bob Orton), which sent Randy Orton into an absolute rage. He destroyed The Singh Brothers on the outside, even putting one of them through an announcer’s table with an insane RKO. Orton then slid into the ring, ate Mahal’s finisher, and got pinned. The crowd being behind Randy to an insane degree, the involvement of the legends, and the crazy bumps The Singh Brothers took did add a fair amount to this. Plus, the story they told during the match (as simple as it was) was fine. I think it’s fair to say that this was certainly a decent step above their first encounter. ***1/4

Warren Taylor: Worked in the same style and the same city five decades ago, Jinder Mahal opposite Randy Orton would have been perfect. The hometown hero against the despicable foreigner in the shadow of the St. Louis Arch would have been a license to print money. In 2017, in Donald Trump’s America, the situation made me quite uncomfortable, which is a shame because there was a lot to like here. Mahal working over Orton’s leg was smart, and the Viper sold it fabulously. The crowd was molten for their hometown boy and gave the contest an extra dimension. The Singh Brothers going after Cowboy Bob and the subsequent beatdown was glorious, even better it led to the finish where Orton’s justice seeking cost him the title. ***1/2

The Fashion Police def. The Ascension

Kelly Harrass: Is it possible to watch a match and have no opinion of it? Like, I love the Fashion Police, but I have no thoughts on this match. I had more thoughts on #Jipples. This random episode of Superstars they inserted into Money in the Bank was weird. Pop-Tart Rating: Wild Berry

Sean Sedor: So The Ascension revealed themselves to be the culprits who destroyed The Fashion Police’s office. To be completely honest, I wasn’t paying that much attention to this one, mainly because I was too busy trying to explain to the concept of WWE naming a PPV “Great Balls Of Fire” to my brother, but also because I was cracking up over Jinder’s apparently odd nipples (thanks Kelly & Warren). As for the reveal, it was pretty lame (because The Ascension are forever lame), and this match was simply here to fill time. N/R

Money In The Bank Ladder Match
Baron Corbin def. AJ Styles, Dolph Ziggler, Sami Zayn, Kevin Owens, & Shinsuke Nakamura

Kelly Harrass: Before the match started, I was fully prepared to write a review where I talked about not wanting to see Nakamura take ladder bumps. Thankfully, I don’t have to do that because Nak was taken out by Corbin during his entrance and he didn’t enter the match until after all the crazy ladder bumps were already taken. Nakamura got to clean house in the match like he was goddamn Steve Austin and the crowd went nuts. For a guy that wasn’t in the first two thirds of the match, this was really built around Nakamura, leading up to his big face off with AJ Styles. And what a face off it was. The fans knew that this was a huge moment and really treated it as such. Even though Corbin won, Nakamura was shown to be a proven commodity by the time the bell rung. The other standout in the match had to be Kevin Owens who took two gross looking bumps. While the ending of the match left me cold, the rest of it was very enjoyable. Pop-Tart Rating: Hot Fudge Sundae

Sean Sedor: Baron Corbin attacked Shinsuke Nakamura during his entrance, making it a five-person Money In The Bank Ladder Match for a sizable chunk of this main event. Well, I was trying to focus on this match, but then the power on my street (and possibly my entire neighborhood, I still don’t know) went out, apparently due to some really bad thunderstorms that were about to hit as the main event started. Fortunately, my phone had enough battery life for me to finish watching the show. From what I was able to see (albeit a few minutes behind everyone else), this looked like an awesome match. Of course, we got some absolutely insane and memorable bumps from the usual suspects (Styles, Owens, Zayn, and even Ziggler). Zayn delivered a sunset flip powerbomb to Ziggler, Owens took both a half-nelson suplex on the apron from Zayn along with a Death Valley Driver onto a ladder bridge, and Styles dangled in the air with no ladder underneath him for a good ten or twenty seconds before falling to a match (which conjured up memories of the bump he took in his Elevation X Match with Rhino from TNA in 2007, although this was definitely higher). Nakamura then make his return, and absolutely clean house on the entire field, which led to a brief (but awesome) exchange between Nakamura & Styles. I’m sure we’re getting that singles match at some point down the road. In the end, however, Baron Corbin was able to take advantage of the two former New Japan stars going at it to win the Money In The Bank Ladder Match, meaning that the widely speculated winners of both ladder matches on this card ended up coming true. This PPV was really a mixed bag, and needed the main event to really deliver. Fortunately, much like the main event from Extreme Rules two weeks prior, the main event was awesome enough to raise the overall quality of this card. As for Corbin, I doubt he cashes in on Jinder Mahal, though I could easily see him cashing in on whichever babyface beats Mahal for the title. In the meanwhile, we have a Baron Corbin/Shinsuke Nakamura feud to look forward to so….yay? ****1/4

Warren Taylor: It hit me during the main event that Baron Corbin’s dress, demeanor, and hairstyle remind of a man who peddles knockoff ninja weapons at the county fair. Trust me, that was the only ridiculous thought I had during the rest of the match. AJ Styles, Dolph Ziggler, and Sami Zayn would not let me. Every time one or all three were in the ring good things happened: Ziggler climbing the ladder and Corbin, Zayn’s powerbomb off the ladder to Ziggler, and then later the half-nelson suplex to Kevin Owens on the apron. Styles’ FU to Owens on the ladder and then dangle act on the chain served as reminders of why thrives when ladders are legal. Shinsuke Nakamura’s return, the pop he received, and his brutalization of the field put a smile on my face. The closing moments of he and Styles fighting over the briefcase were magical, and the crowd loved it. Oh yeah, Baron Corbin did absolutely nothing of note except win. ****1/4