So, against all odds, MiTB turned out to be not the total train wreck that I was expecting. Yes it woefully failed to live up to the near perfection status of the same event last year but when you look at the buildup over the past few weeks, this really feels like an ” I’ll take what I can get” kind of situation.
First up, those that we knew were going to do well in the SmackDown MiTB match performed fantastically. It does make me long for that same match but without the botches from the usual suspects but in an effort to be somewhat positive I’m going to try and focus on those that did well. Tyson Kidd and Cody Rhodes both came out of the night looking like they should be frequently headlining episodes of Raw. But I have to give the match to Dolph. There is always a guy in a MiTB match to perform one crazy spot, but as soon as that happens, you know that he can’t win because, “What if that guy got hurt.” Usually that slot is given to Kofi, but watching Dolph seem to get killed at least twice on Sunday led me to believe that he was in that position. So needles to say we should all be pretty stoked that Ziggler picked up the well disserved win and this will hopefully be the think that finally allows this man to be a main evener for the company. (Highlight of the match goes to Ziggler crashing into the announcer’s chair.)
Not a whole lot of positive things to say about the next match though. Except that Ziggler didn’t become the first person to fail cashing in his briefcase. (Anyone else legitimately scared for a second that’s what was about to happen?)
At this point I’d like to skip several of the unannounced matches that happened on MiTB, for the reason that I had literally no investment in them, and would probably have to look up a few to remember exactly who was fighting. I will say that the Miz returned to cut a fantastic promo, which I can only hope, leads to the Miz that we used to have. I’ve said it before, but Miz really needs to be put in an awesome (pun) angle soon. It hasn’t happened yet and it probably won’t happen next week (with Raw 1000 being as crowded as it is) but we need to get something fast so that we get “legitimate contender for the title” Miz, and not “can’t beat Alex Riley” Miz.
As usual Punk and Bryan put on the match of the night and what may be a match of the year come December (seriously, the nominees for 2012 may just be the Punk vs. Bryan matches.) I can’t think of the last time that a feud lasted for three PPVs without me being overwhelmingly tired of it, and now not only have Punk and Bryan managed to reach that mark, I would be stoked to learn that they were continuing onward through SummerSlam and beyond. Probably not, considering recent storyline developments, but the sooner this feud reignites the better. It was also a really nice touch to take AJ out of the match for a while so that we could get some straight Punk vs. Bryan without worry of interference, but when she was there, AJ played her part perfectly. WWE, you may as well run this character into the ground because I don’t think I will ever buy “crazy for the sake of crazy” this much again.
As for the Main Event placement this month, I would like to say that in theory a MiTB match should close out the show. In the same way that The Rumble closes out Royal Rumble, and an Elimination Chamber match closes out Elimination Chamber. But that’s not the case. That has never been the case. The past two years, the final match of the show was the WWE title match. And now, a chance to be in a match for the title is being considered more important than the actual match for the title. The entire point of last year’s MiTB, was that no one man was greater that the WWE or the title, but WWE has sure gone out of their way this year to prove that that idea was wrong, and that “one man” is John Cena.
And Now for An Unrelated Thought on Raw 1000
There is little doubt that Raw 1000 is going to be great. That many people showing up and that many silly shenanigans happening, we may have the first good three-hour episode ever. But then we have next week and Raw 1001. And Raw1002. And three-hour episodes for the foreseeable future. WWE constantly produces terrible three-hour episodes now and more than a few two-hour episodes that fall into that category as well. While I’m hoping against hope that it won’t happen, I feel like unless something happens next Monday that fundamentally changes the layout of the show, and the entire storyline, we are all in for very long Monday nights.