Tomorrow night, superstars from both RAW and SmackDown will battle it out to determine who will capture the Money in the Bank briefcase.
Each contains a contract guaranteeing the winner a shot at their respective brand’s world title.
However, this year’s event is a little different than before. Both the men’s and women’s MITB ladder matches will take place at WWE’s global headquarters in Stamford, Connecticut. The participants will start at the ground floor and make their way up to the roof, where the briefcases will be suspended.
There are also rumors that both matches will take place at the exact same time, which totally isn’t a disaster waiting to happen. Regardless, they’ll have to “climb the corporate ladder”, and I know this because we’ve only heard it about a million times over the last month.
Besides the ladder matches, there are four other matches officially on the card. Let’s look at them and hand out some predictions!
SmackDown Tag Team Championships: The New Day (Big E & Kofi Kingston) (c.) vs. The Miz & John Morrison vs. Lucha House Party (Lince Dorado & Gran Metalik) vs. The Forgotten Sons (Steve Cutler, Wesley Blake, and/or Jaxson Ryker)
Up first is a fatal four-way match to determine the top dogs in the SmackDown tag team division.
The New Day reclaimed the titles on the April 17th edition of SmackDown, with Big E defeating Miz and Jey Uso in a triple threat match. But even before then, all three teams (along with Lucha House Party) have fought to establish dominance above the rest.
The Forgotten Sons then made their debut a few weeks ago and honestly… I could have cared less. They were never interesting in NXT and they still aren’t now. But Jimmy Uso’s legitimate knee injury forced WWE’s hand, and here they are. Just don’t be surprised if they have a strong showing here; anything less and they’ll end up fading back into obscurity.
Either way, I’m still picking The New Day to retain. There’s no reason to have them lose the belts so soon and none of the other teams winning makes sense. To be quite honest, the only reason Lucha House Party is even in this is to most likely take the pin.
Big E and Kingston will keep the power of positivity alive on Sunday night.
Prediction: The New Day
SmackDown Women’s Championship: Bayley (c.) vs. Tamina
Staying on the blue brand, we move on to the SmackDown Women’s Championship.
Last October, Bayley fully turned heel, debuting a new look and destroying the inflatable “Bayley Buddies” during her entrance. On the Oct. 11th episode of SmackDown, she defeated Charlotte Flair to regain the title after losing it at Hell in a Cell. Since then, she has successfully defended it against the likes of Lacey Evans and Naomi.
Bayley then had to defend the title at WrestleMania 36 in a six-pack elimination match against Evans, Dana Brooke (who was removed from the match), Tamina, Sasha Banks, and Naomi. With help from Banks, Bayley was able to retain the title yet again.
Tamina was the first one eliminated and claimed that no one in the match actually beat her. She challenged Bayley to a title match and the champ agreed only if she could beat Banks in a match, which she did.
I’m not sure there’s anyone out there who thinks Tamina is going to win here. Does she deserve to? Absolutely, but WWE’s booking of her has made that almost impossible. They’ve always relied on her family name and never put any actual effort into getting the fans to care about her.
But for all we know, they could pull the ultimate swerve and have Banks cost Bayley the title. However, I think they’ll save that for another time.
WWE Universal Championship: Braun Strowman (c.) vs. Bray Wyatt
Then we look at a match-up with a little bit of history behind it.
Wyatt lost the Universal Championship to Goldberg back at Super ShowDown, who lost it to Strowman at WrestleMania 36. On the following episode of SmackDown, Wyatt reminded his former ally that he was the one who brought him in as a member of The Wyatt Family. He also claimed that Strowman abandoned him and forgot where he came from.
He wanted his title back and challenged Strowman to a match, which he accepted.
The interesting thing about this one is that Wyatt is apparently not going to wrestle as The Fiend. This might make him seem like the obvious underdog, but that’s why I’m picking him to win.
Strowman could easily underestimate him going into Sunday, which could ultimately lead to his downfall. I have a sneaking suspicion that Wyatt has something up his sleeve that’s going to help him reclaim the title.
Prediction: Bray Wyatt
WWE Championship: Drew McIntyre (c.) vs. Seth Rollins
Up next is a match for the top prize on RAW.
McIntyre defeated Brock Lesnar for the WWE Championship during the second night of WrestleMania 36, while Rollins lost to Kevin Owens on the first night. On RAW the next night, The Monday Night Messiah claimed that by losing, he had been crucified and had truly risen. He later attacked McIntyre, hitting him with The Stomp twice.
The following week, McIntyre challenged Rollins to a title match at MITB, stating that as champion he needed to face the best. The challenger accepted and the match was set for Sunday night.
Having McIntyre feud with Rollins was probably the safest choice WWE could have made. Rollins is a monster heel right now and fans would love nothing more than to see him get demolished. There’s no way McIntyre is losing the title here; he deserves a long reign and having him lose so soon is a horrible decision.
Prediction: Drew McIntyre
Women’s MITB Ladder Match: Asuka vs. Shayna Baszler vs. Nia Jax vs. Dana Brooke vs. Lacey Evans vs. Carmella
We then come to the first of two MITB ladder matches, starting with the women.
Back on April 13th, Asuka, Baszler, and Jax qualified for the match by defeating Ruby Riott, Sarah Logan, and Kairi Sane respectively. On the SmackDown side, Brooke defeated Naomi, Evans beat Sasha Banks, and Carmella bested Mandy Rose (thanks to some help from Sonya Deville).
If a woman from RAW wins, then she gets a chance to take on RAW Women’s Champion Becky Lynch. Her last title defense came at WrestleMania 36 against Baszler, which had quite the frustrating ending.
On the other hand, one of the women from SmackDown would take on SmackDown Women’s Champion Bayley (or Tamina, depending on how that match goes). Her last title defense was also at WrestleMania 36, retaining in a fatal five-way elimination match.
Almost every sign imaginable is pointing towards Baszler walking away with the briefcase. However, I don’t think she really needs it. She doesn’t need to sneak around and wait for the right moment; she’s just going to go ahead and take it. But I am looking forward to seeing how much destruction she causes at WWE HQ!
I think Jax will actually walk away victorious; her and Lynch still have plenty of unfinished business to take care of and this could easily become a full circle moment. Besides a few little confrontations here and there, these two still haven’t really come to blows after Jax infamously broke Lynch’s nose two years ago.
Baszler’s time will come (hopefully soon), but for now I think Jax should win and finally have her long-awaited feud with Lynch.
Prediction: Nia Jax
Men’s MITB Ladder Match: Daniel Bryan vs. Rey Mysterio vs. Aleister Black vs. King Corbin vs. AJ Styles
Finally, we look at the men’s MITB ladder match.
Much like the women, the men also had qualifying matches. On the SmackDown side, Bryan, Corbin, and Otis defeated Cesaro, Drew Gulak, and Dolph Ziggler respectively. For RAW, Mysterio and Black defeated Murphy and Austin Theory, while Styles won a last chance gauntlet match this past week.
Apollo Crews also qualified by defeating MVP, but was pulled from the match after sustaining a knee injury against Andrade on the April 27th episode of RAW.
If a RAW superstar wins, they’ll get a guaranteed shot at WWE Champion Drew McIntyre (or Seth Rollins). If someone from SmackDown wins, they’ll get a chance to take on WWE Universal Champion Braun Strowman (or Bray Wyatt).
At first, I was leaning towards Black winning; he’s being pushed hard right now and a MITB win would further elevate his career. But then I started to have the same feeling I did with Baszler; Black is the kind of guy to go after an opportunity, not sneak around and steal one.
So, once Styles qualified, I leaned more towards him. MITB is a match that heels typically win, and McIntyre as WWE Champion opens the door for Styles to swoop in and take the title. Anyone else winning really wouldn’t make sense.
The Phenomenal One will rebound from his loss at WrestleMania 36, and it all starts tomorrow night.
Prediction: AJ Styles