Just beyond the center of the spotlight, with more than the WWE Tag Team Championships at stake, The Usos and The Wyatt Family's journeys approach a critical moment at Money in the Bank 2014.
While the bulk of the hype for the upcoming pay-per-view will be for another title, the battle for the tag belts offers two teams a chance to propel themselves forward—to force fans to notice the tag team division—and a stage on which to compose a career-altering match.
Jimmy and Jey Uso, like Erick Rowan and Luke Harper, have a brass ring within reach. This tag team title match has the potential to alter both teams' futures.
It serves as a proving ground for two challengers looking to thrive away from their leader and two champions who have had a short list of greatest hits since winning the belts.
The Usos ascended in the tag team division too late. They knocked off The New Age Outlaws, strapped on the gold and saw rubble around them.
A resurgence in tag team wrestling had faded. The Usos' first challengers were comedy duo Los Matadores.
That's about as far a step down from facing top competition as one can get. The twins then faced Curtis Axel and Ryback. Nothing memorable came from those showdowns.
This current feud with Bray Wyatt's followers has been the best part of The Usos' reign. Suddenly, they have worthy challengers hunting them down. They've had quality battles in the process, speed meshing well with power, warriors colliding with savages.
As this rivalry reaches its climax, The Usos can further invigorate their title run.
Here is a chance to add a highlight to their careers, to top their best match to date—a losing effort to The Shield at last year's Money in the Bank. This time around, The Usos are the champs holding off their foes.
A spectacular performance on June 29 would encourage WWE to focus more on The Usos and the tag titles rather than let two pay-per-views pass without a title defense, as we saw at Extreme Rules and Payback.
An instant classic would boost The Usos, proving that they belong in their current spot atop the division.
Should the brothers offer something subpar here, the critics will emerge with sharpened pencils, ready to start penning stories of The Usos' flop as champs.
Against bitter rivals, in a match far more prominent than their pre-show bout at WrestleMania, the titleholders face a major test. Are they just exciting high-flyers to plug in on TV or can they be kingpins of a division?
A lack of consistent, quality competition has hurt them to this point. With that remedied, it's time to start making memories or watch WWE grow impatient and move the titles elsewhere.
Wyatt's shadow stretches wide. A wrestler with his electric charisma and knife-edged tongue is rare, so one's attention naturally heads his way.
That has meant Harper and Rowan have been relegated to sidekicks standing in the dark of the background. They have had few opportunities on their own, and none bigger than this one. Their only pay-per-view match as a duo came at Survivor Series 2013 against CM Punk and Daniel Bryan.
Even then, Wyatt was the heart of the story. He was the star, despite watching the action from his rocking chair.
This upcoming title match is Harper and Rowan's show, not Wyatt's.
Should they thrive in this bout, smashing The Usos' heads back, drumming their forearms on their back until the audience is ensnared, it would serve as an announcement of their arrival. With as many good matches as they've had on TV, it's hard to pick out a particular highlight.
That's what they can create here, win or lose—much the way The Usos did last year.
The brothers entered that match as underdogs who seemed to be misplaced as contenders. They enthralled with their efforts to gain the titles and created their opus in the process. It's Harper and Rowan's turn to do the same.
They can not only showcase their brutality on a big stage, but take hold of a thin division that needs new energy.
At Extreme Rules 2013, Roman Reigns and Seth Rollins punctuated their rise with a title win. They went on to star in the saga of Cody Rhodes and Goldust fighting to get their jobs back before getting two shots against three world champs in Evolution.
A similar launching pad awaits the bearded bruisers.
Talk of potential with this "family" so often centers around its patriarch. With an enthralling enough showing at Money in the Bank, Harper and Rowan can force the discussion their way.
That is what's at stake beyond the gold The Usos will walk in with. Two opposing squads who couldn't be more different yet have similar goals at Money in the Bank: gain momentum and grab the audience's attention in a vise grip.
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