Money in the Bank Results: Why Chris Jericho Got Jobbed Moving Forward
On January 2nd, when it was revealed that Chris Jericho was the man behind the "It begins" promos, fans expected Jericho's return to be the wrestling equivalent of the "end of the world as we know it" and for Y2J to come back with a vengeance in the WWE.
Unfortunately that has not been the case.
After not being able to win the WWE Championship Money in the Bank match tonight, Jericho now has an astonishing 0-6 pay-per-view record since his return.
Jericho lost to Sheamus in the final two of the Royal Rumble, was awkwardly eliminated from the WWE Championship Elimination Chamber match when he was knocked outside the ring, failed to defeat CM Punk for the WWE title at both WrestleMania and Extreme Rules, missed out on the World Heavyweight Championship at Over the Limit in a Fatal 4 Way (and took the pin from Sheamus) and now lost the MITB match.
In short, Jericho has turned into a main event jobber.
With Dolph Ziggler and John Cena coming out as the winners in the two Money in the Bank matches tonight, WWE went 50 percent in terms of booking the correct winner.
Ziggler was a smart choice to win the briefcase. He is one of the most talented men on the roster, is getting more and more over with the fans and really should have been a (legitimate) world champion months ago.
Cena however, is a classic example of predictable booking by the WWE and was, in my opinion, the total wrong pick to win the WWE Championship Money in the Bank match. The right one was Chris Jericho.
Who should have won the WWE Championship Money in the Bank match?
With Kane and Big Show's time in the Championship picture behind them and Miz's return too fresh to be back in the Main event that quickly, Jericho was the heel that made sense taking down the briefcase.
Booking John Cena was also foolish on several levels.
I understand that Cena winning sets up CM Punk vs. John Cena at SummerSlam for the WWE Championship, which will be sure to co-main event the evening (along with Brock Lesnar vs. HHH), and really, I'm all for that match.
Cena has been away from the title long enough to where it wouldn't be upsetting to see him get a title shot. Plus, the two of them have proven in the past just how great of a match they can put on together.
However, winning the MITB briefcase was the total wrong way to set up for this match. Part of the fun of Money in the Bank is that you don't know when the cash-in is going to come. With Cena, there is a zero percent chance that he makes his cash in a "surprise" cash-in. Instead, he will likely announce his intentions to face Punk at SummerSlam either tomorrow on Raw or in two weeks in Raw's 1,000th episode.
Also, John Cena is the biggest name in the company. He is an 11 time world champion. Does he really need the MITB briefcase to become the No. 1 contender?
The Money in the Bank match is intended for mid-carders or, at the very least, lower level main eventers to catapult their way to the top of the championship picture.
John Cena is already at the top. Have him win a No. 1 contender battle royal or tournament on Raw. Have him defeat the other MITB losers in a No. 1 contender match to set up Cena vs. Punk. Do something different than have him win the briefcase that should have gone to Chris Jericho.
Other than Miz (who is my favorite wrestler and I will always root for), I was really pulling for The Ayatollah of Rock-N-Rolla to come up with the briefcase in tonight's main event.
As I mentioned, Jericho's treatment in PPV's has been dreadful since coming back to the company. Having him win tonight would have been not only another accomplishment in Jericho's Hall of Fame career, but the right booking move by the WWE.
Imagine Jericho pulling down the briefcase, and then leaving the company for the summer months to tour with his band Fozzy.
Then, come fall or winter, Jericho makes a surprise return and cashes in his MITB briefcase on a vulnerable Cena or Punk to become champion once again and set up a final reign in his historic career.
Having Jericho with the briefcase, and Cena becoming No. 1 contender in a different way would have been the best for all parties involved.
Instead, you essentially now waste a MITB cash-in and Jericho is once again stuck in no man's land.
If Jericho doesn't leave the company this summer, where exactly is his future headed?
Will Chris Jericho ever be a WWE or World Heavyweight Champion again?
Sure, he could pick up his presumed feud with Randy Orton when the Viper returns from suspension, but based on his recent track record, it would just indicate another PPV loss for Y2J.
Orton will likely be booked strong upon his return and defeat his opponent at SummerSlam to reestablish himself as the face of SmackDown. Jericho's momentum is fading, and he would have to be considered a huge underdog if that matchup took place.
Sheamus looks like he may need a new No. 1 contender for the World Heavyweight Championship, and a Jericho vs. Sheamus feud could be interesting. However, the way Sheamus is being booked, plus the fact that a heel (Ziggler) is holding the MITB briefcase, makes it seem extremely unlikely that Jericho would come out on top in that feud.
I expect Ziggler to cash in his MITB briefcase (eventually) on a wounded Sheamus to win the world title. That way, Sheamus loses the belt without getting beat clean, and Ziggler finally gets his chance. But I doubt WWE would have Ziggler cash in the briefcase on Jericho, because heel vs. heel cash-ins are awkward (see Jack Swagger on Jericho).
Both of those options may keep Jericho relevant, but all of the momentum from his return is practically gone as he continues to lose.
If Jericho does opt to leave for the summer, how much could his return really be anticipated without a MITB briefcase?
It is unfortunate how Jericho has been handled in 2012. What started out as having the potential to be one of Jericho's most successful years in WWE, is now turning into his least.
If only he had pulled down that briefcase tonight, the entertaining Jericho could have once again become one of the top names in all of pro wrestling. Instead, despite being the inventor of the MITB match, he remains winless, and must once again try to claw his way back to the top.
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