With WWE's third annual Money in the Bank fast approaching, there is a lot of pressure to make this show spectacular.
Last year in Chicago, the WWE bore witness to one of the best non-big three pay-per-view shows ever. The show was headlined by CM Punk vs. John Cena for the WWE Championship, with Punk threatening to walk away from the company with the prized possession of the company.
Not only was Punk vs. Cena a classic encounter, it was elevated by an under-card that lived up to the main event's hype. Randy Orton and Christian continued their feud of the World Heavyweight Championship in yet another great match. Both the Raw and Smackdown Money in the Bank matches were great as well. Overall, the 2011 show is one worth remembering for years to come.
Like it or not, this year's show doesn't have nearly the same momentum for the company heading into the show. Punk alone brought a massive amount of attention to the company for one night, and the WWE proved to not let its fans down on that night.
While looking at the whole picture, this show needs to provide a spark. Not just because the product as been a little down lately, but also because, with Raw's 1000th episode airing the night after, the storyline build going into that episode needs to be at a high level.
With that being said, here's a few ways that Money in the Bank 2012 can lead to some great things and, also, make it another gem of a B-level PPV.
Of all the people involved with the WWE Championship picture, AJ Lee is the highlight. She gets more airtime than any other diva, and this includes the Divas Champion, Layla.
Since it doesn't appear as if she is going to go away any time soon, why not give her a reason to be on TV more than any other diva, other than her crazed personality?
Layla doesn't have anything going on right now, so let AJ have a shot at the Divas Championship and have her win it. This will justify putting AJ on screen more often and even give Layla a solid feud now that Beth Phoenix is no longer in the picture.
She's already the face of the division; why not give her the belt as well?
It's no secret that the Tag Team division in the WWE has been in a flux for a number of years. Gone are the days of the Hardy Boyz, Dudley Boys and Edge and Christian. Now, it is up to the likes of the Primetime Players and All World Promotions to help reignite the division.
Except they need to take those straps off of Kofi Kingston and R-Truth in order to do so.
Kingston and Truth, along with Little Jimmy, are a nice tag team, no doubt. However, in order to help reinvent the dying division, a lengthy feud is very much needed. And to rejuvenate the tag team competition, a title change must be in the works.
By having Titus O'Neil and Darren Young become the new tag team champions at Money In the Bank, Kingston, Truth and Jimmy will have a lengthy feud for the first time in, well, ever.
O'Neil, Young and AW are emerging as special stars in the WWE. Hopefully, the rest of the company is willing to come along for the ride.
Rarely in the Money in the Bank matches do we ever have numerous Superstars who do not deserve, nor should they be given the opportunity, to win.
This is the case for both the WWE Championship and World Heavyweight Championship Money in the Bank matches. Overall, there are at least three total competitors who should not win.
In the World Heavyweight Championship, this man is Tensai.
Tensai debuted after WrestleMania as this big, Japanese phenom who was to come in and dominate the rest of the WWE. Unfortunately, he has been completely mishandled to this point. He has victories over John Cena and CM Punk, which were suspected to elevate his status in the main event ranks. Except, after each of those wins, he disappeared from TV and was never given an opportunity to shine.
One factor in this is inability to register any heat from the crowd that knows him simply as Albert, which was his original name in his first stint in the WWE. Tensai is just an enigma at this point, and his most compelling story has been him beating up on his manager, Sakamoto. Tensai was inserted as the big man threat into this ladder match and should not win unless they are looking to ruin a good match.
Big Show and John Cena represent the WWE title ladder match as the ones who should not win. However, it seems unlikely that neither one of them will win, mostly because there are only four men in match. Unlike Kane and Chris Jericho, Cena and Show have little to no relevance in the WWE Championship picture. Kane and Jericho have each had WWE Championship matches this year, while Cena and Show have had other things going on.
Putting only former WWE Champions in this ladder match pretty much takes away from the original meaning for the Money in the Bank match: giving stars who have never been able to reach main event success gain an opportunity to become a champion.
Cena is a 10-time WWE Champion, so having him win the ladder match is essentially a slap in the face to its original meaning. Show, while only holding a world title for a total of 45 seconds in roughly a decade's time, doesn't belong in the WWE title picture and should not even be in a ladder match as it is.
All rambling aside, unless some surprise entrances are put into the match next week, either Cena or Big Show will likely win the match. But that does not mean that they should.
Give Kane or Jericho the chance to cash-in on an unsuspecting Punk or Bryan. Give either man the last shining moment in careers that have been great. Cena and Big Show don't need a briefcase with how they are being written right now.
Do the right thing, WWE, and don't have Cena, Big Show or Tensai be the winner of the Money in the Bank match.
Sheamus is sort of a controversial topic among WWE fans these days.
Some fans love him; others absolutely can't stand him. The conversation has gotten far more heated now that Sheamus is holding the World Heavyweight Championship. The manner in which he won—an 18-second victory over Internet darling Daniel Bryan—didn't really help anything.
Now, Sheamus has decimated his competition ever since winning the World title at WrestleMania. He's done away with Bryan, Randy Orton, Chris Jericho, Alberto Del Rio (last three in one match) and Dolph Ziggler (too many times to keep track of).
Del Rio now gets his World title one-on-one contest that he earned himself after WrestleMania. Del Rio has become a shell of his former self and now gains little to no attention. He needs a victory, dirty or not, to become relevant again.
Also, it would be a nice change of pass to have Sheamus drop the strap, even if it has to be to Del Rio. If Sheamus were to drop the strap, he would be able to elevate his game back to the powerful, angry Irishman that we know and love.
Sheamus with the strap is sort of a buzz-kill because he's gotten too comfortable holding the belt. Del Rio with the title might sound like a bad idea, but it's needed in order to have Sheamus regain his edge as a competitor.
Pitting Daniel Bryan against CM Punk is always a sweet sight to behold. However, now they will not be alone in the ring for the second PPV in a row.
AJ, the love interest and often crazed personality towards Punk and Bryan, will be the special guest referee. While having AJ has drastically helped the Punk-Bryan feud progress and lengthen, having her as the referee also brings that special secondary element to the match.
Having Punk and Bryan clash once again is exactly what the fans wanted to see. Together, they can take even a simple contest and turn it into an instant classic.
However, having the secondary element could also take away from what could be another match of the year candidate.
In order to avoid this from becoming a poor booking mistake, AJ must not get involved in the match in a physical capacity until near the very end of the match. Allow Punk and Bryan to have another 20-minute encounter and then sprinkle in the AJ affect, if you will.
This feud has been getting good lately. Now it's just a matter of not screwing up great matches such as this one.