This is WWE’s opportunity to make up for what happened last year. The first ever Women’s Money in the Bank match was won by a man — or at least with great assistance with one. The backlash was so strong because of this they held a re-do with the same winner, just minus the man. So, this technically being the third ever women’s Money in the Bank ladder match, they have to get this one right. The lineup is solid too.
Ember Moon, Alexa Bliss, Natalya, and Sasha Banks will represent RAW while Becky Lynch, Charlotte Flair, Lana, and Naomi will represent Smackdown. There could be a decent argument for almost any of these women to win. In fact, let me cover those arguments now.
Ember Moon: As the lone singles women’s competitor to get called up from NXT this year, Ember has everything you would want in a MITB case holder. Charisma, if they ever let her speak. She’s fantastic in the ring and owns the stage when she’s there. Plus, the idea of an Eclipse from the ladder sounds like an amazing spot I almost guarantee happens.
She’s also an up-and-comer which is what MITB has always symbolically meant to us as fans. The people with the briefcase are the “next thing” to watch. Ember easily fits that bill and is the only really new name from this crowd.
Alexa Bliss: The goddess does not need the briefcase. Her place is well cemented as the top heel who could have a great program with anyone. However, this would be the Edge style pick. Alexa is also the ultimate opportunist who finds the most creative and sneaky ways to win. It’s fully conceivable she could sneak her way to the briefcase and then to the women’s title which none of us would be disappointed with. Plus, her character seems to do better when she has something to hold over the rest of the division and being Ms. MITB would definitely qualify.
Natalya: Oh Nattie. Natalya has basically had the longevity of John Cena without the overwhelming success. If anyone has earned the opportunity to do something cool with MITB, it’s Natalya. Will she? Probably not. I don’t see her winning. No one else could claim the pedigree, experience, and veteran status as a serious competitor (she didn’t spend any time as anything like the Funkadactyls, but we’ll get there) as she could. I wouldn’t be nearly as interested if she won but she’s definitely earned the spot.
Sasha Banks: At least this would drive her character somewhere. The inconsistent nature of her relationship with Bayley has taken a lot of the fire away from the Boss character. Is she face or heel? Will she shake your hand or slap your face? I don’t know, you don’t know. I don’t even think Sasha knows. MITB Sasha could use it to fully turn heel and be The Boss again. It might be exactly what she needs to make her character mean something again.
Becky Lynch: Becky is, sadly, slowly being positioned as Natalya’s replacement in the “super good but always overshadowed” department. The first woman drafted to Smackdown and subsequent first Smackdown Women’s Champion has not been treated as such. She has to keep reminding us of these things in her promos because they haven’t done anything to show us she is that good. Much like Sasha, the briefcase could give Becky’s character some life and another dimension that it really needs. Unlike Sasha, I don’t want to see heel Becky. I just want to see a better one.
Lana: Rusev Day. It is as organic as the Yes! chant and very well could be here to stay. To try and spin some of that to Rusev’s real life wife Lana makes perfect sense. They wanted to push Lana a year or two ago but it didn’t work out. Her ring skills seem to be increasing as opposed to her Russian accent which seems to be fading. She is the least skilled wrestler of the lot here but Carmella won last year and she basically held the Lana position in that match. Plus, if Rusev wins the men’s briefcase, this will make for fantastic television.
For story purposes, I want Lana to win. For logic purposes, she has no business winning this match.
Charlotte Flair: In my opinion, Charlotte is becoming very one note. Bow to the queen, Woo! There, I just summed up every promo from the last 6 months. That being said, the idea of Charlotte not being somewhere near the title scene feels weird. She is probably the most recognizable and significant character in the Smackdown Women’s division and yes, I’m including Carmella and Asuka in my calculation. She’s in prominent positions and will be all the time. Charlotte doesn’t need the briefcase but if she had it, it would make for good TV.
Naomi: Naomi deserves better than she’s gotten. She’s always been the most athletic of the women’s division and arguably the most underutilized. She won the Women’s Battle Royal and that’s held exactly as much meaning as the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal winner: Matt Hardy. It doesn’t matter that Matt won. It matters that it started the relationship with Bray Wyatt, making the rest of the Battle Royal meaningless.
In the same way, Naomi won and until this past Smackdown, it’s barely come up. It’s another meaningless victory on top of a pile of meaningless victories she’s racked up over the years from her time from the Funkadactlys (told you we’d get there) to not being on TV. Even her brief stint as Women’s Champion doesn’t and didn’t feel as meaningful as it should. Giving her the briefcase would hopefully turn into something to put her in the Charlotte/Alexa level of respect in the women’s division.
Plus, just imagine the cash in. Lights go off, music starts, the stage glows, and she attacks from behind when you can see nothing but the lights on her shoes. Cinematic gold. By WWE standards anyway.
That’s everyone. If I were to give a prediction, I think it goes to Sasha Banks. She needs the most help getting her character back on track and they’re not going to have both briefcases go to Smackdown again and let’s not mince words: the men’s briefcase is going to Smackdown. Why? Stay tuned for my men’s MITB ladder match preview right back here on FightBoothPW.com tomorrow.
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