Ring Rust Radio is the best wrestling show on the airwaves, and this week was no different. With strong opinions on Money in the Bank, John Cena and more, this is where you need to go to get all of your weekly WWE nuggets.
Bleacher Report featured columnists Mike Chiari, Donald Wood and Brandon Galvin give the lowdown on all things going on in the wrestling world. WWE Superstar Rob Van Dam also joined the show to offer his inside perspective on the business.
With another unpredictable episode of Ring Rust Radio in the books, you can't afford to miss another second of the action. Catch us live every Tuesday at 9 p.m. ET (some language NSFW), or follow us on Twitter @RingRustRadio.
Some Language NSFW.
Breaking Down World Title Ladder Match
In what may very well be the biggest Ladder match in WWE history, eight Superstars will vie for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at Money in the Bank. It is a star-studded field featuring John Cena, Bray Wyatt, Randy Orton, Cesaro, Roman Reigns, Alberto Del Rio, Sheamus and Kane. Barring an unforeseen swerve, one of those eight men will end Sunday night as the most powerful star in professional wrestling.
Question on Everybody's Mind: Who Will Leave MITB as World Champ?
All signs initially pointed toward seven Superstars being involved in this match, but Triple H called a late audible when he added Kane to the contest at the close of Monday's go-home edition of Raw. Kane brings some star power and experience to the proceedings, but it remains to be seen if his presence will have any real impact on the match. He was feuding with Daniel Bryan prior to Bryan being forced to surrender the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, so it isn't outside the realm of possibility that he could be a transitional titleholder.
With that said, nearly every other wrestler in the match would probably be a better option. Many fans would love to see WWE put the belts on an up-and-coming star like Wyatt, Reigns or Cesaro. WWE may be more comfortable with a veteran such as Cena, Orton or even Kane, though. Much of what WWE decides to do may hinge on the status of Bryan moving forward. If he is due back soon, then someone who can quickly transfer the title back to him may win. If Bryan still needs a significant amount of time to recover, however, WWE may be looking for a long-term answer.
Ring Rust Radio's Take
Almost all of the Superstars in this match have their merits and could do some interesting things with the title, but WWE's track record suggests that one man rises above the rest. Cena hasn't been the company's top champion since SummerSlam last year, and he has never been WWE World Heavyweight Champion. Because of that, WWE could reason that having Cena win would actually be "fresh." Also, a Cena win opens the door for a number of money feuds. Since Cena is tussling with The Authority, a match against Triple H could possibly be on tap for Battleground.
After that, Cena could potentially face Bryan at SummerSlam for the second year in a row. If Bryan isn't ready, though, a match against a returning Brock Lesnar could be in the cards. Lesnar needs an opponent and announced his intention several months ago to be WWE World Heavyweight champion. Fans may be tired of seeing Cena as champ, but he would be an effective vehicle in terms of putting the belts on Lesnar.
WWE may still roll the dice by having Wyatt, Reigns or Cesaro win, or it could even split the titles. One WWE World Heavyweight champion has been promised, though, and Cena is the person that the WWE brass knows it can rely on.
Backstage News on John Cena at MITB (F4WOnline via WrestlingInc.com)
Breaking Down Money in the Bank Ladder Match
While the Ladder match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship may be the most important bout on Sunday's card, the Money in the Bank contract Ladder match isn't far behind. Winning the Money in the Bank contract virtually guarantees a title run and essentially tabs someone as the next breakout star in WWE. There is some uncertainty in this match due to an injury, which figures to make things even more interesting.
Question on Everybody's Mind: Who Will Leave MITB with the Briefcase?
This contest was supposed to feature Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, Bad News Barrett, Dolph Ziggler, Rob Van Dam, Jack Swagger and Kofi Kingston, but Barrett suffered an injury during Tuesday's SmackDown taping. According to WWE.com, Barrett separated his shoulder, which puts his Money in the Bank status in doubt. Barrett was certainly among the top contenders and may have been in line for a victory. With that in mind, WWE may have to call an audible.
None of RVD, Swagger or Kingston appear to have a legitimate chance to win. Van Dam is a veteran who doesn't need the briefcase, while neither Swagger nor Kofi are in position to vie for the title any time soon. It can be argued that Ziggler belongs in that group as well based on how he has been booked, but he has an outside chance because of his immense all-around talent and due to the fact that he has put on great matches with the likes of Rollins and Barrett lately. In all reality, though, this one is likely to come down to Rollins and Ambrose.
Ring Rust Radio's Take
Rollins and Ambrose are two of the top rising stars in WWE, and there is little doubt that they will be in the world title conversation in the near future. Whoever wins this match will be in the mix sooner rather than later, so it comes down to whom WWE values more right now. Since Rollins was given the spotlight by having him turn heel, break up The Shield and join The Authority, one can only assume that WWE has bigger plans for him than Ambrose in the immediate future.
Also, it is usually more entertaining when a heel has the briefcase. It increases the likelihood of cashing in on a vulnerable champion at any time, and it opens up a world of possibilities. Also, since Rollins and Ambrose figure to have a singles feud moving forward, the Money in the Bank contract could be put on the line in an effort to increase the importance of the rivalry. This has all the makings of being the match of the night since the styles involved in this match should mesh quite well. When the wild encounter comes to an end, though, the briefcase will be in Rollins' clutches.
Possible Plans for Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose (Wrestling Observer Newsletter via WrestlingInc.com)
RRR Interview with WWE Superstar Rob Van Dam
Rob Van Dam has been one of the most exciting stars in wrestling since bursting onto the scene in ECW. While most 43-year-old wrestlers are very much in the twilight of their careers, RVD continues to put on spectacular performances. Van Dam discussed his current status with WWE, his expectations for Money in the Bank and much more when he sat down with Ring Rust Radio for an exclusive interview.
Question on Everybody's Mind: What's Next for RVD?
After taking some time off, Van Dam's current contract with WWE began following WrestleMania XXX. RVD has engaged in rivalries with stars such as Barrett, Cesaro and Swagger, and he has been key in terms of helping those wrestlers gain legitimacy and notoriety. Van Dam has been spectacular in his own right, though, and he will have opportunity to show off in the Money in the Bank Ladder match on Sunday.
Van Dam has always excelled in these types of matches, and he is clearly excited about the opportunity to be in another.
"I love a match like Money in the Bank, I love a hardcore match, and that's what the Money in the Bank Ladder matches are," Van Dam said. "Throw the rule book out and let out your imagination. Usually, you have to be among the tougher (Superstars) to enjoy a match like that because you are going to be hit with steel and cement and there's most likely going to be some blood—even though they want to stop it with the current policies with the WWE—some people might get busted open."
Even though RVD isn't considered a favorite to take the Money in the Bank briefcase for the second time in his career, that isn't what he is all about. Van Dam has already accomplished so many accolades that simply putting on a great performance and stealing the show is good enough for him.
Ring Rust Radio's Take
Van Dam is one of the most valuable Superstars on the entire WWE roster due to his versatility. He can have an excellent match with anyone, he is wildly popular, and he is more than capable of wrestling in either the midcard or the main event.
RVD could easily be a featured player on WWE programming, but he values his current situation. Van Dam plays it by ear contractually and plans to continue doing that moving forward.
"I have never been one of the guys that goes crazy at home. I can't even imagine what that's like," RVD said. "I need the balance. WWE knows I walked away from them in 2006, (that) I stayed away for six or seven years (and) that I'm capable of that without question. The other wrestlers, they have a few days off and they go nuts. ... They're young and they're looking to show people what they've got, I'll let them have it. I'm happy with my position and the way WWE is treating me right now."
Even though Van Dam isn't necessarily a full-time WWE Superstar anymore, he is still among the very best. RVD plays his role to absolute perfection, and fans should be thrilled to see him in any capacity for as long as they can.
Bleacher Report Article
RRR Season 5 Fantasy WWE Standings
1. Mike Chiari: 515
2. Donald Wood: 225
3. Brandon Galvin: 122.5
4. Tom Kinslow: 32.5
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