The state of the WWE World Heavyweight Championship is literally up in the air.
With Daniel Bryan’s recovery from neck surgery keeping him on the sidelines for longer than expected, he is no longer the holder of those coveted title belts. Instead, you can find them dangling above the WWE ring, a symbol of the upcoming Ladder match that will take place at Money in the Bank for the vacant straps.
But given that this plan was put into action on such short notice, it’s difficult to predict who will be booked to win the match and capture the gold.
The fact that there are seven participants doesn’t make it any simpler. Furthermore, the presence of relatively newer names in the title picture—namely Cesaro, Bray Wyatt and Roman Reigns—allows a number of exciting prospects.
If F4WOnline (via Marc Middleton of WrestlingInc) is anything to go by, we could be set to see a more established name leave the TD Garden with the belts in tow:
F4WOnline reports that John Cena is apparently in line to win the WWE World Heavyweight Title at next Sunday's Money In the Bank pay-per-view.
It was previously reported that word from within WWE was that a heel would be leaving Money In the Bank with the title. During Monday's RAW, it appeared they may be grooming Roman Reigns for the title as they had him work his way into the match but that may not be the case as it's likely too soon for Reigns to have a title run.
So much for giving the new guys their chance. But I suppose if we look at the bigger picture, this one makes more sense.
Perhaps it is too early for one of the aforementioned trio to win the top prize. Besides, either one would arguably benefit more from a prolonged program which sees them finally come up triumphant—much like Bryan recently (minus the neck surgery, of course).
And if the report by the Wrestling Observer Newsletter is anything to go by, Brock Lesnar looks set to challenge for and win the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at this year’s SummerSlam. So what would be the point in having Reigns, Wyatt or Cesaro hold the titles for a mere few months?
With this in mind, a Cena win looks more logical. His value is too high for a short-lived title reign to damage his standing, and Cena vs. Lesnar would fit the WWE’s preferred formula of heel vs. face, though it probably wouldn’t fit the fans’ preferred formula of avoiding rehashes of old Cena matches.
On that note, what about a Randy Orton win?
Orton vs. Lesnar would certainly be fresh, as would Sheamus vs. Lesnar, though I think the fans would be more invested in the former contest. As for the seventh participant, Alberto Del Rio, his stock isn’t high enough to warrant a main event at SummerSlam with Lesnar, so I can’t see the WWE going down that route.
All in all, I still imagine that WWE will go with Cena. Having him win would be the easiest way to transition to a Lesnar title run. But I’m really starting to think that Orton could be a suitable victor.
A main event clash with Lesnar could be just what The Viper needs to rejuvenate his stagnating position in the WWE, and even though it would be heel vs. heel (barring a face turn from Orton), it would likely be a more favorable choice among fans than Cena vs. Lesnar II.
Of course, much of this discussion has been based on the assumption that Lesnar will indeed compete for the title at SummerSlam. If he doesn’t, then that only casts further doubt on the situation.
Either way, this proves one thing—the Money in the Bank match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship is shaping up to be a thoroughly intriguing affair.
Please feel free to comment below with your opinions on this one, as well as any predictions you may have or thoughts on the article itself.