Seems appropriate that this show is in Las Vegas, where you can gamble on who can be a future champion in the World Wrestling Entertainment. With so many wanting to ante up to claim the vaunted briefcase to cash in a future opportunity, plus four titles are on the line, this is the place where the odds can swing either way. So let’s spin the Wheel of Fortune, and see who will cash in for the show.
We’re coming to you live from the MGM Grand Arena in Las Vegas, NV, as the panel of Kayla Braxton, Booker T, JBL, Michael Patrick, and Peter Rosenberg give their picks for tonight’s matches on the Pre-Show, but check them out here if you want *real* expert opinions.
There was also talk of the recent signing of Logan Paul, and please excuse me as I hook up the IV of mezcal to get through yet another in a long list of bad news I’ve received this week.
I was going to make this a drinking show, as I tried to employ the Four Mezcalteeers, but decided against it, as the suggestions were to drink every time someone said “John Cena” or “Premier Event” or “Roman Reigns”, and I’m certain that would qualify as genocide, and my lawyer would find it impossible to defend my behavior as Good Fun. Especially with the current state of the Supreme Court decisions.
In any case, the pre-show is over (with no match at all, and I wasted an hour of my life…but thank goodness for mezcal) as we head to actual show.
Corey Graves, Jimmy Smith, and Byron Saxton have the call, and we head to the First Match of the night…
Money in the Bank Women’s Ladder Match: Lacey Evans vs. Alexa Bliss vs. Liv Morgan vs. Raquel Rodriguez vs. Asuka vs. Shotzi vs. Becky Lynch
Watching the intros, Lynch and and Asuka have the highest fan reaction, but Morgan seems to have a groundswell of support, too.
As this is a human demolition derby, Asuka and Lynch are in the ring as the rest dive for ladders, and The Empress of Tomorrow is on a tear, starting with Lynch any woman foolish enough to enter the ring. Ladders come into play quick, and Rodriguez shows off her power deadlifting a ladder with Lynch and Morgan on it. They try to suplex Rodriguez but she reverses to her own suplex, and they land hard on the ladders. Shotzi, Evans, and Asuka ram a ladder to Rodriguez, and Shotzi loses her foot climbing the ladder to give her a facebuster on the ladder.
Bliss dives on all the women and gets a ladder to climb for the briefcase, but Rodriguez cuts her off and Little Miss Bliss chops her down to size. Asuka and Shotzi have an exchange before a Shotzi is hip tossed to a laddeR. The Big move of the match has Evans in the grasp of the briefcase, but then Rodriguez gets under her , and now Morgan reaches on the opposite side of the ladder, and she turns Evans inside out with a sunset powerbomb from the ladder. Shotzi then brings Rodriguez down, and then rams Bliss back first into the ladder in a nasty landing. Shotzi climbs the ladder, but Lynch cuts her off and sends the (redacted) Blackheart crashing down. It’s a back and forth between Shotzi and Big Time Becks. Shotzi attempts with a senton to Lynch but she escapes, and Shotzi gets her head clipped on the edge of a ladder.
Asuka comes back with a kick and climbs but Rodriguez sends her out, and then goes outside, sets up a ladder on commentary and the ring, and she grabs Asuka. They go back and forth, and Lynch knocks out both women. She climbs on a nearby ladder for an avalanche leg drop, and she bounces off Asuka and looks like she got the worst. Three ladders are set up in the middle of the ring, but Lynch wipes out the field and climbs the middle ladder, but Morgan spoils it. Lynch kicks her ladder, but Morgan balances on the top rope, pushes back, and knocks off Lynch, and climbs up to unhook the briefcase.
Your Winner of the Women’s Money in the Bank: Liv Morgan
Morgan is overcome with emotion, and Lynch is absolutely apoplectic at the decision.
I have a theory (see what I did there) that we need to wind down from that opening match, so let’s get to…
WWE United States Championship: Theory (c) vs. Bobby Lashley
There’s a lengthy video package of what led to this title match, but I need a ruling: does Theory look like what would happen if you ordered Sammy Guevara on the Wish app, or is it just me?
In any case, the fans are solidly behind The All Mighty, and Theory smartly rolls out. Once he gets back in, Lashley manhandles Theory, and he goes for a spear, but Theory rolls out again. He then pushes Theory off and he hits the barricade. Lashley picks up Theory, and he knees his head and sends him to the ring post
Theory uses his agility, but Lashley catches Theory and rams him to ring post with a sickening thud. Back in the ring, Theory takes advantage. Lashley still has the power, but Theory uses his cunning to keep him grounded. The Vegas fans chant “Let’s go, Bobby” as he fights to a vertical base to attempt The Hurt Lock, but Theory gets out before it’s cinched in. Now Lashley clotheslines Theory, and gets a tackle in the corner. He goes out and rolls back in but Lashley gets Theory up with a gorilla press to a powerslam that gets him a two count. Lashley rushes, but Theory drops his head to the middle turnbuckle, and then follows up with a rolling leaping dropkick for a two count. Lashley picks him up but Theory rakes his eye and nails a spear. He tries his finisher, but Lashley reverses to The Hurt Lock, and he has no choice but to tap out.
Your Winner, and New United States Champion: Bobby Lashley
Backstage with Sarah Schreiber who’s with Liv Morgan on who she’ll cash the Money in the Bank on. She just want to celebrate, and she is overcome with getting the shot.
Now we move to the…
WWE Raw Women’s Championship: Bianca Belair (c) vs. Carmella
This match came about because Rhea Ripley wasn’t medically cleared and there was a five-way match to determine the number one contender, and Carmella got the win, proving ‘Mella is money. Carmella comes to the ring like she grabbed a Vegas chorus girl’s gear backstage at the MGM Grand. The best part during the ring intro was Graves saying they’d renew their wedding vows once she wins, and he has it on good authority by Triple H of a spot to get married in Vegas. Ha! Comedy wrestling call back.
After we get boxing-style intros, Belair s able to overtake Carmella, and her athletic ability outshines ‘Mella. Carmella attempts with a huracanrana but Belair stops her mid-rotation. This is all EST at her finest, but ‘Mella cheap shots her and now she is in control. She ties up Belair in a submission but loses the position. Belair goes on the attack, and Carmella yanks back on her hair
Belair gets a delayed marching suplex, followed by ten punches to a clothesline to Carmella. She follows up for a tackle, but Carmella moves and Belair goes through the corner and hits the ring post. ‘Mella goes for pin attempts and can’t put away the champ. Carmella puts the badmouth on the champ, and now she’s had enough and delivers the K.O.D. for the pin and the win.
Your Winner, And Still WWE RAW Women’s Champion: Bianca Belair
Corey Graves bemoans after the match, “What am I gonna do with a whole case of Dom Perignon?!” Me: I’ll DM my address, Corey…or I’ll get it to your brother. Either way…
As Belair celebrates the title defense, Carmella comes back as a sore loser and beats down the champ, and you know this is far from over.
There’s more news on Logan Paul, and it is taking everything I have not to throw my iPad like a shrunken star into my TV. There’s also a shameless CreditOne ad by Alexa Bliss that the fans rightly boo, and thankfully I switched to bourbon to shut down the medulla oblongata from raving live a rabid marmot as this crass advertisement.
We switch over with Michael Cole, Pat McAfee and Corey Graves for commentary, so let’s bring the smoke with the…
The Undisputed WWE Tag Team Championship: The Usos (Jey Uso and Jimmy Uso) (c) vs. The Street Profits (Angelo Dawkins and Montez Ford)
Dawkins and Jimmy start off and both men are evenly matched until Dawkins takes out both Usos. Oh yes, they got smoked. Now Ford is tagged in, with McAfee yelling at Jey Uso (since they have heat), and he’s playing mind games on Ford, but it isn’t long until The Street Profits just isolate him on their side. Dawkins back up Jey to ropes, and Jimmy blind tags in and The Usos slam him to the mat. Jimmy suicide dives to the floor on Dawkins and the Usos double team with a suplex to the ring post. Dawkins is now isolated as The Usos pick him apart, and he’s a Profit in Peril. Dawkins lands with a desperation chop, and crawls to his corner. Jey comes in, but Ford gets the hot tag, and goes for a dive and Jey superkicks him in midair to the sternum.
Jey whips Ford hard into the corners of the ring, and gets a knee to his neck to choke Ford out on the bottom ropes, and Jimmy pays tribute to Reigns with an apron dropkick. Now The Usos land with a double axe handle tag team move that would make Deolition proud for a two count on Ford. They make a wish on Ford’s legs, and Jey lands with vicious crossface blows. Jey teases a tag from Ford to Dawkins, but Jey heel kicks him off the mat. Ford fights out and tries to rally with a slingshot from the ropes, and Jimmy slaps the taste out of his mouth. Jimmy attempts with a suplex but Ford reverses on the ring apron. Ford crawls to his corner and gets the hot tag to Dawkins, and he Brings The Smoke with a somersault dive. He follows with a corkscrew neckbreaker on Jimmy but gets a two count, and then he tackles both Usos on the outside. Now Dawkins and Ford with a tandem tackle to a suplex for a two count.
Fans are on their feet, chanting “This is Awesome!”, and The Street Profits deliver with an electric chair/blockbuster for one, two…so close. Now Jey and Dawkins slug it out, going toe to toe, and the match breaks down to a Pier Four browse and the Usos getba double superkick on Ford for a close two count. Ford feels froggy , and dives from the corner to the outside on The Usos. He gets Jey in the ring, and Ford lands with a frog splash to cover, but Jimmy breaks the pin count. Now, all four men stare each other down and it’s a slugfest, but The Usos gets another double superkick, and then get the One and Done finisher on Ford to retain.
Your Winners, and Still Undisputed WWE Tag Team Champions: The Usos
There’s a little controversy as Apparently when Jimmy did the pin he hooked his shoulder so he technically wasn’t pinned. But he ref didn’t see it, and you know The Street Profits ain’t gonna have that happy crappy.
Now for the “good luck following up with that last act “ match, it’s for the…
WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship: Ronda Rousey (c) vs. Natalya
(Authors Exhausted Rant: Unless Natalya wins, I just don’t care for this match. At all. I want to be invested, and I realize this will hurt any chances I need to seek political asylum in Canada, but this is all Rousey going forward)
The match is mostly back and forth, with both women showcasing their technical prowess. This is a good scientific match, but after the tag match, I feel the audience isn’t quite as invested. Natalya steps out to jaw at McAfee, because…why not, and Rousey gives chase. Natalya heads back in the ring, and she cheap shots Rousey and puts the beat down to the Rowdy one.
There’s a one up-womanship between the women, but Natalya is in full control. Rousey gets some offense and tries the Piper’s Pit finisher, but Natalya reverses and goes for an armbar, but she reverses to a Sharpshooter. Rousey poses in the submission like Shawn Michaels, and you can’t help but wonder if there is a screw job around the corner. Rousey goes for an armbar and waits for the fans, but Natalya rolls her out of the ring. She then gets Rousey in a sharpshooter on the ring apron, but she rolls Natalya into the ring post with a thud. Now, Rousey is pulling up lame as she tries Piper’s Pit again, but Natalya goes for the Sharpshooter and Rousey reverses to an ankle lock. Rousey gets an arm triangle and Natalya has no choice but to tap out.
Your Winner, and Still WWE Smackdown Women’s Champion: Ronda Rousey
Just before I get set to pour another shot, All of a sudden Liv Morgan sprints out, cashes in her shot. And we have another title match. So call it…
WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship: Ronda Rousey (c) vs. Liv Morgan
Rousey gets her in an ankle lock. Morgan tried to fight out, and she pulls her back, but Morgan manages to roll up for the one, two, and three. She did it!
Your Winner, and New Smackdown Women’s Champion: Liv Morgan
Rousey gives the belt in a show of respect, and Morgan celebrates with the fans.
That should be the capper for a good night. But let’s finally go to the Main Event, and it’s for the …
Men’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match: Seth “Freakin” Rollins vs. Drew McIntyre vs. Sheamus vs. Omos (with MVP) vs. Sami Zayn vs. Riddle vs. Madcap Moss
Before the match starts, Adam Pearce comes out from back, and wants to add to it. He raises with an eight competitor with…Theory.
While this might be part of a grander design, I fail to see the appeal of the Wish listing of the Spanish God. But, there let’s than twenty minutes to this show, so…let’s get this over with.
Omos levels the field and gets a ladder. Also, No matter how hard McAfee screams at the action going on in the ring , I am completely underwhelmed. Riddle tries to choke the Nigerian Giant out, but no dice. Drew McIntyre lands with a Claymore that sends the big man out, and he sets the ladder up, but Sheamus drags him down. We get a pub fight from both men, while Theory climbs the ladder. They turn their attention to the eighth man and catch him and make him pay, by way of McIntyre and Sheamus exchanging clubs at his chest, until Rollins brings in a small ladder to knock them all out.
Riddle comes back in and Rollins makes him eat a ladder. He sets up a Pedigree, but Riddle reverses the move and Rollins lands back first on the ladder, followed by a Bro-ton. Now Zayn is in and sends Riddle out of the ring. He gets a ladder to climb to the briefcase, but Moss grabs him and Zayn drop toeholds him to the ladder. Moss bounces back and sends Zayn crashing onto another ladder. Moss climbs, and Riddle gives chase and battles up top, but Omos knocks both men off. Theory leaps at Omos, and gets choke slammed for his trouble.
Moss and McIntyre dump Omos off, and all seven men are on the outside dumping ladders on Omos like they’re in the ECW Arena to ensure the big man doesn’t come back up like a Nigerian Jason Voorhees. Rollins is by himself and he climbs up top, but Zayn cuts him off at the pass and Sheamus gets up top and all three men are battling above the ring. Sheamus dumps off both men, and Theory sends him crashing. Now Moss grabs Theory and dumps him to the outside. Moss climbs and sees Zayn in the periphery , and he climbs off to attack him. The big move of the match has Omos come back in the ring and powerbomb Zayn hard to a ladder set in the corner, and oh gods that hurts to watch.
McIntyre has the briefcase at his fingertips but can’t unclamp it, as Sheamus knocks him over and gets him in the White Noise, then gets Riddle in the Irish Curse backbreaker. Riddle gets a hangman DDT to Sheamus from the ladder rungs, and then a powerslam to Rollins. He climbs and gets a Moonsault on all the men in the ring. Omos makes his way back and wreaks havoc in the ring, and Theory tries to climb but Omos double choke slams him to the mat. Everyone ties to take out the Nigerian Giant again outside the ring, and all six men powerbomb Omos through the commentary table, and McAfee says, “Hole-lee…well the fans are chanting it!”
Back to the ring, there are bodies are strewn about and McIntyre gets Sheamus pinned on a ladder as he climbs. But Butch runs out to choke out McIntyre, and he climbs down and Sheamus gets out and nails him with a Celtic Kick. He returns the favor pinning McIntyre with the ladder. As he goes to climb, McIntyre presses him off the ladder. After he gets out from under the ladder, he Claymores Butch, and climbs where he and Sheamus battle it out up top. Zayn dumps both men off and gets knocked off by Moss, who now gets sent off by Rollins with a curb stomp. Riddle gets a bigger ladder (because size matters), and Rollins and Riddle are neck and neck until he gets Freaking Rollins with a super RKO from the top of the ladder to the floor. Riddle has it at the fingertips, and Theory sprints up top and they battle it out, but Riddle is pushed off and Theory gets the briefcase.
Your Winner of the Men’s Money in the Bank Match: Theory
Cole says you gotta congratulate Theory, and I say bulls*** to that. Theory gets selfies of himself with the briefcase as the show closes with him as Mr. Money in the Bank.
Honestly, this was a solid PPV, and the highlights were the Women’s Money In The Bank Match, and the Undisputed Tag team match with The Usos and The Street Profits exceeded expectations. Also, kudos to Liv Morgan cashing in her opportunity on Rousey to become champion. That should’ve been where the show ended.
Alas, the Main Event was (as the kids say) basic. And no matter what anyone says, Theory is going to generate the wrong type of heat from fans. But what else do I expect from Vince McMahon’s handpicked favorite?
At least I don’t have to recap another…wait, whaddya mean I have to recap WWE RAW on July 18th?! Ahhhhh, dammit!