MITB 2018 Spotlight: Men’s Money In The Bank Ladder Match

I said in yesterday’s Women’s MITB Spotlight that I’d previewed every Money In The Bank match since I started this blog, so I couldn’t leave out the men’s match in 2018. I was looking back through old previews and noticed I used a slightly different format last year to what I’ve normally done, and I’m going to use it here too. So let’s break down the match!

The Miz

Miz

How can he be the star of the match?

By playing the spoiler role. Whenever any of the faces in the match get anywhere close to the top of the ladder, The Miz can be the one to stop them grabbing the contract. He should avoid all the high risk spots and just appear at the worst possible times for the fan favourites. Miz should also be around at the end, either to win the match or to finally get his comeuppance by getting literally knocked off his perch by the winner.

Will he actually win?

He has every chance. The Miz has proven his worth in the last two years, and it’s very possible that he can get back into a world title picture via the contract. He would actually have been my pick to win this match last year, but it was a SmackDown-exclusive PPV and Miz was moved to Raw post-Mania. A year later, it’s a tougher field with superstars from both brands, but Miz hasn’t cooled off too much. It could still be his time.

 

Rusev

Rusev

How can he be the star of the match?

Rusev has to be really visible. He has to be everywhere, involved in every big spot and constantly trying to get up a ladder. On paper he has the weakest record of the field announced for the match, so he has to set about proving he belongs in the company of WWE’s top echelon.

Will he actually win?

I just don’t see it. His popularity is undoubted, but WWE has been so hesitant about pushing him that it feels like this may be them throwing Rusev’s fans a bone. It may just be a token gesture, and I really don’t see him walking away with the contract.

 

One member of The New Day

The New Day

How can he be the star of the match?

It’s difficult to say when we don’t know which member of New Day will be in the match. If, as expected, it’s Big E, then the best way to make him shine will probably be by having him take out a good proportion of the field. We know Big E now as a fun-loving big man, but he has the ability to match pretty much anyone in the company for power, so he would need to show it off. Kofi and Xavier would both have to do some spectacular high flying to stand out, but the odds on favourite for the final spot in Big E.

Will he actually win?

No. I think regardless of who does step into the ring, they’re not going to win. It may be a breakout moment for one of them, but I feel pretty confident saying that none of them will win.

 

Samoa Joe

Samoa-Joe-on-Raw

How can he be the star of the match?

By being him. His usual smash mouth, take no prisoners, Joe against the world self. His character is perfectly suited to this match, so all that needs to be done is a few big moves involving weapons and he’ll be just fine.

Will he actually win?

He’s my pick. Not only is he the badass with a mean streak, but Samoa Joe is willing to do anything to get ahead and take his rightful place at the top of the mountain. This contract gives him a free pass to the world title, and it’s an opportunity he’s not going to pass up. I have to imagine that tonight will be the final installment of AJ Styles vs Shinsuke Nakamura for a while, so giving someone like Joe the win here is an easy way to throw another name into the title mix.

 

Bobby Roode

IMG_1666

 

How can he be the star of the match?

I’m not going to lie, Roode is the one I’ve struggled most to come up with a game plan for here. There is no one role that I can think of that both suits him and would work. For me, that speaks volumes about the need for him to go back heel. So it’s maybe not becoming the star of the match here that would be best for Roode, maybe it’s sewing the seeds of aggression or resourcefulness, that he can tap into after a heel turn down the line.

Will he actually win?

No. He was in the spot of being too big of a name to leave off the show, but he wasn’t in a serious storyline, so WWE threw him into this match. It’s not an entirely uncommon occurrence, but it does mean that Roode’s chances of winning the contract are slim. Ironically, if he is to turn heel at some point in the future, it could be an excellent crutch for him to base that turn on. But that doesn’t mean I think it’s at all likely.

 

Kevin Owens

Owens

How can he be the star of the match?

I think Owens needs to show off his viciousness. We’ve seen how little regard he has for his enemies in his actions towards Mr McMahon, Shane McMahon and Daniel Bryan over the last year, and he needs to tap into that again. Owens at his best is a heel that can leave you feeling uncomfortable watching what’s going on. Probably through some weaponry, that’s how he can stand out again tonight.

Will he actually win?

It’s possible. WWE are high on Owens, that much is clear, otherwise he wouldn’t have won the Universal Championship when he did, and he wouldn’t have been put into a programme with the McMahons. He is the Raw alternative to Miz in that both character are ideally suited to holding the contract and cashing in opportunistically. Because of that, I can’t rule him out at all.

 

 

Braun Strowman

Braun Strowman

How can he be the star of the match?

Do I even need to answer this? Destruction. Pure and simple, and copious amounts of it. There shouldn’t be a table left standing, chairs should be blasted to pieces, he should demolish ladders and only keep one safe because he needs to climb it to win the match. This is a chance for Braun to remind everyone why he should be in the conversation (along with Seth Rollins) for the man people actually want to see dethrone Brock Lesnar, and I fully expect to see just that happen.

Will he actually win?

The question with Braun is always how do you stop him? When he’s been protected as much as he has, and shown to be as bulletproof as him, what will actually keep him down? While he’s not who I’m picking, those questions are tricky to answer here. The only thing stopping me going all in on Braun is that he is a face now, and the contracts tend not to work as well with face holders. But Braun could easily win and announce he’s cashing in on Lesnar at some point to build that confrontation. He’s not my pick, but Braun is absolutely at the head of the chasing pack.

 

Finn Balor

Balor

How can he be the star of the match?

Coup de grace off the top of the ladder anyone? When I was talking about The Miz playing spoiler earlier, someone like Balor would be the perfect guy for Miz to knock off at the end to win. If that’s the kind of story they go for with a heel win, then Balor has to be the nearly-guy. Channel 2013, where the story of one of the matches was to make the crowd want Cody Rhodes to win, only to snatch it away from him. That’s the role for Balor to be the guy everybody talks about in this match, only he could easily win at the end.

Will he actually win?

I just don’t know. If I was picking based on who I wanted to see win, Balor would be my guy. But looking at it from a booking perspective, I don’t see it. I can’t rule Balor out completely because he’s a really safe bet, and winning MITB is a way of getting him back into world title contention. I just feel like there are too many other guys who are more likely. I really hope I’m proved wrong.

What do you think? Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: