The John Report: WWE Money in the Bank 2021 Review
Welcome to the WWE Money in the Bank review on TJRWrestling. The fans are back following’s WWE return to the road this past Friday on Smackdown, so there is a lot of excitement in the air. The two Money in the Bank matches are interesting just to see who WWE might go with as the winners of those matches.
As a reminder, I have a listing of every WWE PPV that I reviewed in order by year. Thank you for supporting us at TJRWrestling. We appreciate you. Let’s get to the show.
The Kickoff Show panel was Kayla Braxton, Booker T, Jerry Lawler, John Bradshaw Layfield and Peter Rosenberg. They talked about the matches throughout the Kickoff Show. There was an appearance from John Morrison and The Miz talking about Morrison winning the Money in the Bank Ladder Match.
The Smackdown announce team of Michael Cole and Pat McAfee were on hand to call the first match. Pat was wearing some cowboy-inspired attire in Texas. The Usos made their entrance first. The crowd in Fort Worth was on fire. There were some cool graphics used as part of Rey and Dominik’s entrance.
Kickoff Show Match – Smackdown Tag Team Championships: Rey & Dominik Mysterio vs. The Usos (Jimmy & Jey Uso)
Dominik with two dropkicks on Jimmy followed by an armdrag across the ring. Rey tagged in with a double team armdrag and then Dominik gave Rey a Powerbomb on Jimmy for two. Jey tagged in with a forearm splash on Rey, but Rey came back with a dropkick. Jey sent a charging Rey under the bottom rope to the floor. Jimmy was back in with a hard chop, choking across the middle rope and Jey hit a cheap shot punch that the referee didn’t see. Rey broke free, Dominik got the tag and hit a springboard clothesline. Dominik hit a neckbreaker. Dominik with a double springboard moonsault for two. That looked even better than when he did it on Smackdown. Jey tagged, Dominik kicked him off the apron, Dominik kicked Jimmy too and Dominik jumped off the top with a cross body block, but The Usos caught him. The Usos whipped Dominik in the barricade to take control again. Jey with a running hip attack on Dominik against the turnbuckle. The Usos were in control as Jey hit Dominik with a body slam as Jimmy/Jey pulled on Dominik’s legs. Jimmy set up Dominik on the turnbuckle, Dominik fought back with elbows and Dominik went for a sunset flip and then tossed Jimmy over the apron to the floor. Dominik kicked Jey down as well. Rey got the hot tag against Jey with Rey hitting a clothesline, back elbow, Jey with a kick and punch and Rey hit a headscissors. Rey with a forearm, Rey up top and a seated senton splash for two. Rey jumped onto Jey’s shoulders, Jimmy slapped his brother to tag himself in, Jimmy with a superkick on Rey and a popup Samoan Drop for a two count. Good nearfall there. Jey tagged in as The Usos set up for a double team, but Dominik pulled Jimmy out of the ring and Jimmy sent Dominik into the ring post. Rey rollup on Jey for two. Rey hit the 619 kick on both Usos, but then Rey went for a springboard attack and Jey hit a superkick. Jey went up top and hit an Uso Splash on Rey for two. That was an awesome nearfall. Jimmy and Jey each went up top, Dominik knocked Jey down. Jimmy sent Rey into the turnbuckle, Jimmy with a ROLLUP OF DEATH~! and Jey put his feet on Jimmy’s butt for leverage. The Usos win the titles! It went 11:35.
Winners by pinfall AND NEW Smackdown Tag Team Champions: The Usos
Analysis: ***1/2 This was a very good tag team match. After Rey kicked out of the Uso Splash off the top I thought that The Mysterios were going to win, but it didn’t happen. I’m a big fan of The Usos as one of my favorite WWE tag teams ever. Not necessarily a big fan of Jimmy Uso getting a tag team title win after getting a DUI arrest a few weeks ago. It sends a bad message. I don’t know if Jimmy’s getting help or what, but I hope so. Anyway, it does make sense in the storyline to have The Usos holding gold along with cousin Roman Reigns since they are all aligned now.
The Usos celebrated with the Smackdown Tag Team Titles. They are now 7-time Tag Team Champions. The Mysterios complained about the cheating.
Analysis: This match should have been on the main show. It was really good and the fans were hot for it. I guess it doesn’t matter that much, but a lot of people tend to ignore the Kickoff Show matches.
That was the only Kickoff Show match.
WWE Money in the Bank
From Dickies Arena in Fort Worth, Texas
July 18, 2021
The opening video package was excellent as usual in putting over the importance of the Money in the Bank Ladder Matches and the contract that goes to the winner. Plus, they talked about the other matches on the show that are for some major titles in WWE.
The pyro went off in the arena. There were ladders all around the stage and the crowd was full of energy as they made a lot of noise. The Women’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match was up first.
The Smackdown announce team of Michael Cole and Pat McAfee were at ringside to welcome us to the show. I’m surprised they didn’t have one of the Raw guys join them here as well, but I guess they are just going to have them call the Raw match. Pat said that every woman that has won Money in the Bank has gone on to be a champion. Smackdown ring announcer Greg Hamilton did the introductions for this match.
Alexa Bliss was up first with some different-looking gear. It was all black matching her lipstick and darker look. They showed a clip from 2018 when Bliss won Money in the Bank and cashed in the briefcase later that same night to become Raw Women’s Champion. Liv Morgan got a nice ovation from the crowd as a likable babyface making her first MITB match appearance. Nikki A.S.H. (Cross) was next to a decent reaction. Natalya was up next making her fifth Money in the Bank appearance and she is a Women’s Tag Team Champion. Tamina was up next as another half of the Women’s Tag Team Champions. Zelina Vega was up next. I don’t even remember the last time she won a match, but she’s in the match. Good pop for Naomi for her colorful glow entrance. During the entrances of the other women, Bliss was standing on the middle rope by the turnbuckle. Asuka was up last and she was the Money in the Bank winner last year, which led to her become Raw Women’s Champion. The fans were loud during the introductions and I liked the graphics on the big screens.
Women’s Money in the Bank Contract Ladder Match: Alexa Bliss vs. Liv Morgan vs. Nikki A.S.H. (Cross) vs. Natalya vs. Tamina vs. Zelina Vega vs. Naomi vs. Asuka
There was the white Money in the Bank briefcase above the ring. The winner of the match has to use a ladder to retrieve the briefcase to win the contract for a title shot at any time over the next year.
The women started on the floor other than Bliss, who reached up as if she can magically get the briefcase. Asuka went after Bliss and hit a German Suplex. That led to the women going one by one with moves with Tamina taking out Naomi at the end of that. Tamina with a slingshot that sent a ladder into Bliss. Tamina grabbed a ladder, Morgan climbed it and actually touched the briefcase, but then was pulled down. Tamina splashed Morgan and Vega against the turnbuckle. Asuka was back in the ring with a back elbow on Tamina, then Asuka hit a hip attack on Natalya and Asuka hit a missile dropkick on Tamina. The fans chanted for Asuka, who pinned Tamina under the ladder, but when Asuka tried a climb, Tamina pushed the ladder. Morgan was back in with double knees on Asuka. When Morgan tried a climb, Natalya shoved the ladder over to send Morgan into the turnbuckle. Nikki was back with Natalya/Morgan hitting her in the ribs. Naomi sent Tamina into a ladder, but then Tamina hit a Samoan Drop on Naomi. Vega hit a headscissors on Tamina on the floor and Asuka with a hip attack on Tamina into the barricade. Bliss slammed Natalya’s back into the knee. Natalya came back with a slam sending Bliss on her back, so Bliss laughed at her and Bliss did a drop toe hold into the ladder. Bliss with a flip landing on top of Morgan. Bliss set up a ladder under the briefcase, then Vega climbed up with Bliss, that led to Bliss doing her voodoo on Vega on the ladder, so then they mimicked eachother with Vega going down while Bliss went up top. Natalya gave Bliss a Powerbomb by the ladder. Vega took out Natalya, then Vega with a bulldog on Asuka and Morgan suplexed Vega face first onto a ladder. Morgan jumped onto Naomi, who Powerbombed Morgan on Vega on a ladder. Naomi hit a springboard kick on Natalya & Tamina followed by a double Stunner by Naomi. Nikki was caught by Naomi, who slammed Nikki onto a ladder and then Naomi hit a split-legged leg drop on Nikki on the ladder. Natalya sent Naomi out of the ring. Natalya climbed, Vega jumped on her back and Natalya made it to the top of the briefcase with Vega on her back. Vega got her hands on the briefcase, but Morgan was there and she brought both women down. That was a bit dangerous, but they got through it okay. The referees checked on the women.
The match continued with most of the women in the ring punching and kicking eachother. Nikki was on top of a huge ladder, then she jumped over the top rope and hit a cross body block and everybody sold it even the ones that didn’t get touched, which looks comical. Nikki set up the ladder, She climbed up, Bliss pulled down Nikki and Bliss hit Sister Abigail that was like a DDT. Bliss climbed up the ladder slowly, Natalya stopped her and the champs tossed Bliss out of the ring. Natalya sent Bliss into the barricade followed by Natalya/Tamina taking out Bliss with a ladder shot to the ribs. The other women in the match worked together to bury Bliss under a pile of ladders. The fans booed because they like Bliss. Morgan set up a ladder under the briefcase, Liv climbed, Tamina stopped he rand Morgan hit a headscissors. Natalya was back in with a shoulder tackle on Morgan. Liv sent Natalya into the ladder two times. Morgan splashed Vega against the turnbuckle. There were three ladders set up in the ring as Morgan hit a flatliner off the ropes that she has used as a finishing move. Naomi and Morgan each climbed the middle ladder. Natalya, Vega, Tamina and Asuka were up on the other ladders. Nikki also climbed up, so seen women were battling on ladders. Nikki climbed over the other girls and Nikki won! Nikki Almost A Superhero is the new Miss Money in the Bank! The crowd cheered so they were happy with the result. It went 15:43
Winner: Nikki A.S.H. (Cross)
Analysis: ***1/4 It was good for a ladder match (not a great one) with a bit of a surprising finish because I don’t think a lot of people picked Nikki to win although she has been getting a mild push of late. It was interesting to see how much the fans were cheering Alexa Bliss, but I’m not that surprised because she is such a unique character so that makes her stand out from the pack. Natalya and Tamina were impressive in the match by stopping a lot of women from climbing, which the announcers pointed out well. I like that there were a few moments where each woman got a chance to shine a bit with Naomi getting in some cool spots, Vega got a bit of offense, Asuka had a few moments where she looked impressive and Liv Morgan had several chances where it looked like she might win. Nikki really didn’t come close to winning before the finish. It wasn’t a fluke win by any means, but I think it was a bit of a surprise. I picked Morgan, so I got that wrong.
Post match, Nikki celebrated with the Money in the Bank briefcase on the ladders that were part of the set design by the entrance.
There were some commercials plugging WWE Shop and Draftkings games featuring WWE events. There was also a commercial for Peacock programming.
There was a replay shown of The Usos beating The Mysterios to become the Smackdown Tag Team Champions on the Kickoff Show.
The Usos were shown backstage with cousin Roman Reigns, who had Paul Heyman standing behind him with the Universal Title. Reigns said he was proud of them. Reigns said that they took all the pressure, all the tough love and talked about the journey. Reigns said that he was the one that brought back Jey and Jimmy…he said no comment. Reigns said that they are covered in gold. It’s all about this representation because the family is always watching. Reigns said now that he’s given them what they want, Reigns said it’s time to give him what he wants. Jey said that Roman is his Head of the Table, Tribal Chief and Jey said he’s the Right Hand Man. Jimmy said Roman is the Head of the Table and Tribal Chief. Reigns told them he is proud of them. Roman hugged The Usos. That was it.
Analysis: Good segment to continue the story between Roman and The Usos with all of them holding good right now. Roman’s title defense is coming later.
The Viking Raiders made their entrance for the Raw Tag Team Title match. The Raw announce team of Jimmy Smith, Corey Graves & Byron Saxton took over on commentary since it was a Raw match. AJ Styles & Omos made their entrance next as the Raw Tag Team Champions. Big pop for them since AJ is seen as a huge star as he should be.
Raw Tag Team Championships: AJ Styles & Omos vs. Viking Raiders (Erik & Ivar)
Omos started for his team with some dominance including a shoulder tackle and clothesline. Styles with a snapmare into a kick into the back followed by a forearm. Erik tagged in with a hug powerslam on Styles. Ivar tagged in, so Erik slammed Ivar onto Styles. Ivar and Erik each hit knee strikes on Styles with Erik getting a two count after a hard knee complete with a leg slap. Styles hit a dropkick that sent Erik out of the ring. Styles dropkicked Ivar off the apron. Omos tagged in, he lifted Styles over the top and Styles hit a hurricanrana on Erik on the floor. That was awesome! Styles with a chinlock on Erik, then Erik came back with a forearm and a back body drop. Ivar got the tag with a shoulder tackle, side slam and a cross body block on a seated Styles. Ivar with a cartwheel into a clothesline for two. Styles with a jawbreaker, so Omos got the tag back in. Ivar with a clothesline on Omos, who stayed up and Omos gave Ivar a body slam. Omos with a running back splash on Ivar followed by a nerve hold onto Ivar’s shoulder leading to a slam. Styles was back in as he exchanged strikes with Ivar. Erik tagged in strikes including two forearms and Erik hit a jumping knee attack. Erik with a fallaway slam across the ring. Ivar with a running splash on Styles and Erik sent Ivar onto Styles against the turnbuckle. Erik held Styles for a double team clothesline into a German Suplex for two. Styles fought back with punches and a Pele Kick on Ivar. Omos tagged in against Ivar with Omos doing a press slam on Ivar, which is impressive on a big man like Ivar (who is about 320 pounds). Omos pinned Ivar with one foot for two count. Ivar dropped Styles with a jumping splash. Erik tagged in with a forearm for Omos, Ivar with a forearm, Erik with two knees to rock Omos and Ivar hit Omos with a clothesline over the top to the floor. Omos was sent into the barricade. Styles got a rollup for two on Ivar. Styles with a kick to the head. Styles with a forearm and Erik saved Ivar from a Phenomenal Forearm attempt. Viking Raiders hit the Viking Experience for two because Omos shoved Erik onto Ivar to break up the pin! Good spot there. Omos tagged in against Erik. Styles and Ivar with spin kicks. Omos kicked Ivar. Erik charged at Omos, who hit a two-handed lifting slam for the pinfall win at 12:55.
Winners by pinfall: AJ Styles & Omos
Analysis: *** It was a solid tag team match. There were some rough parts in there with Omos, but I think the big man is improving and he got through it okay. That spot where the Viking Raiders hit their Viking Experience move and Omos broke it up by throwing Erik onto Ivar was a really cool spot. Omos getting the win for the team is consistent with how they have been booked as the champions. I don’t know how long they will hold the titles, but I figured they would win here. As for Styles, he was great as usual. I just miss the days when he was a singles wrestler because he’s so talented.
Drew McIntyre was interviewed by Kevin Patrick in the backstage area. Drew said something seems different to him and then mentioned the fans as he asked Fort Worth to make some noise. Drew said that he has to win this match. Drew said that the last time he was in Texas he won the Royal Rumble (2020 in Houston) and then became the WWE Champion. Drew said he flew the flag for WWE, was proud to be champion in the Thunderdome, but if we never hear about the Thunderdome again that would be great. The fans cheered. Drew’s story time said it was time to become Mr. Money in the Bank.
Analysis: Strong promo from Drew. The fans were behind him especially after taking a shot at the Thunderdome.
There was a video package for the WWE Championship match with Bobby Lashley defending the title against Kofi Kingston. The story was that Kofi thought Bobby was getting soft as the WWE Champion. Bobby ended up losing a tag team match with MVP (when MVP got pinned) and Bobby lost clean to Xavier Woods too. At the end of Raw, Lashley was furious, said maybe Kofi was right and Lashley was in a more serious mood.
Kofi Kingston got a big ovation from the crowd. I liked the New Day graphics that were part of the entrance. Bobby Lashley’s entrance looked very cool with the giant screens. The WWE Champion Lashley was very focused with MVP by his side. Lashley turned 45 years old a few days ago, so happy birthday to him. There are not many men that look like him at 45 years old, that’s for damn sure. They stood in the ring for the championship introductions from Raw’s Mike Rome. The crowd was into this match.
WWE Championship: Bobby Lashley (w/MVP) vs. Kofi Kingston
Kofi was aggressive early on and jumped off the top with a stomp to the chest. Lashley came back with a powerful clothesline. Lashley charged, Kofi moved and hit a kick to the chest. Kofi jumped right into Lashley’s arms, Lashley sent him into the turnbuckle and a huge spinebuster. That move is more impressive than a lot of finishers in WWE. Lashley press slammed Kofi over the top to the floor. Lashley had Kofi on his shoulders leading to Lashley sending Kofi into the ring post with Kofi using his arm to take that bump, but sold the head. Lashley had Kofi on his shoulders again leading to Lashley sending him into the ring post again. Lashley worked over Kofi with back elbows followed by a running forearm to the face. Lashley delivered a lifting flatliner to send Kofi into the mat. MVP was happy about that. Lashley applied the Hurt Lock submission, Lashley let go of it, turned his body and suplexed Kofi across the ring. Lashley with another flatliner that spiked Kofi into the mat again. Lashley beat on Kofi with punches. MVP told Lashley to never let Kofi disrespect him like that ever again. Lashley with a Dominator slam on Kofi. Lashley with another Dominator slam. Some fans chanted “one more time” while the referee wanted Lashley to cover. Lashley hit the Dominator slam for the third time. Lashley told the crowd to “shush” leading to boos. Lashley with a Hurt Lock submission on Kofi, who was on his knees and Kofi was passing out, so the referee Chad Patton called for the bell at 7:33 with Lashley getting the win.
Winner by submission: Bobby Lashley
Analysis: *1/2 It was a dominant win to show that Lashley is more serious and more focused than ever. Lashley got about 95% of the offense in the match. I kept waiting for Kofi to get some offense in to get a couple of nearfalls after a few minutes, but then Lashley kept on hitting his big moves. I liked seeing Lashley hit the Dominator slam a few times during the match because it’s such an impressive-looking move. Lashley doesn’t always do the move, but it looks impressive every time he does it. The result sucks for Kofi although I think he’ll be fine because he’s so popular while also being a tag team wrestler a lot of the time. This was about putting over Lashley, which is understandable. I know fans want a competitive match every time. However, sometimes booking a dominant win like this is okay too.
Lashley celebrated with the WWE Championship with MVP by his side. The announcers wondered who could stop him.
Analysis: The reports came out a few days ago that Goldberg is coming back as Lashley’s SummerSlam opponent with Goldberg likely returning on Raw this week. I don’t want it to happen, but I guess it is happening. Please have Lashley win that match too. I’m so tired of Goldberg matches.
There were commercials for WWE games on Draftkings and SummerSlam coming on Saturday, August 21. There was also a commercial for Boss Baby 2. Sure.
The Raw Women’s Championship was up next with Rhea Ripley defending the title against Charlotte Flair. There was a video package to set it up.
Rhea Ripley was up first as the Raw Women’s Champion with Ripley giving some high fives to fans on her way to the ring. Charlotte Flair was up next wearing a green peacock robe with some green attire. Graves mentioned no Charlotte at WrestleMania, so this was her first appearance in front of a crowd in way too long.
Raw Women’s Championship: Rhea Ripley vs. Charlotte Flair
The match started with the fans making noise with a “We Want Becky” chant and then Charlotte gave the fans the middle finger, which led to boos. Charlotte and Ripley exchanged slaps leading to Ripley blocking a kick and doing a takedown. They went to the apron, Ripley avoided a knee attack and Ripley stomped on Charlotte. Ripley with a running dropkick to the floor. Ripley went for a flipping attack on the floor, Charlotte moved and Charlotte dropkicked Ripley into the barricade. Back in the ring, Charlotte with a suplex into the turnbuckle. Charlotte grabbed a chinlock, then a whip into the mat and a boot to keep Ripley down. Ripley slipped behind, Charlotte with a back elbow and Charlotte with a forearm. Ripley blocked a knee attack by sending Charlotte over the top to the floor. The fans chanted “We Want Becky” again. Ripley hit a somersault dive onto Charlotte on the floor. Ripley continued on offense when back in the ring with a kick and a Northern Lights Suplex for two. Charlotte sent Ripley neck first into the top rope, Ripley countered an attack and hit a German Suplex for a two count. Ripley went for a missile dropkick off the top, Charlotte avoided it and Charlotte applied a Boston Crab submission, but Ripley countered it into a two count. Ripley countered a submission into a pin attempt for two. Charlotte with a boot to the face for two. Charlotte went up top, Ripley pulled her down and Ripley had Charlotte on her shoulders. Charlotte countered it into a sunset flip. Ripley hooked the arms of Flair and powered her into a suplex for two. That was impressive by Ripley. Ripley attacked with multiple chops to the chest, but then Charlotte came back with a hard whip into the turnbuckle. Charlotte with a running boot to the face to send Ripley to the floor. Charlotte went up top and hit a moonsault onto a standing Ripley on the floor. Charlotte hit her with her arm mostly, which is how she usually does that move.
They were back in the ring with Ripley avoiding the Natural Selection. Ripley hooked the legs in a submission move and then Flair countered into a forward roll for two. Ripley with a boot to the face. Ripley went for the Riptide, but Charlotte countered it into a DDT for two. The crowd popped for that nearfall. Charlotte and Ripley exchanged strikes with Flair hitting several chops, Ripley with an elbow and Charlotte did the Andrade spot with the missed kick leading into a back elbow. Charlotte tried a pin using the ropes, but the referee saw it, so there was no count. Ripley came back with a kick that sent Charlotte into the corner. Ripley set up Charlotte on the top rope, Charlotte punched the knee to break free and Charlotte hit the Natural Selection neckbreaker off the top for two. Charlotte had a shocked reaction on her face. Charlotte went for the Figure Eight, but Ripley kicked her into the turnbuckle. Ripley tried going after Charlotte, but Charlotte sent the side of Ripley’s head into the ring post. Charlotte kicked the left knee of Ripley against the steel steps. Charlotte applied the Figure Eight submission in the middle of the ring with an impressive bridge and Ripley tapped out to give Flair the win. They went 16:50.
Winner by pinfall AND NEW Raw Women’s Champion: Charlotte Flair
Analysis: **** This was a great match worthy of a title match and a title change that made the champion look tough even in defeat. The fans were turning against them with their chants for Becky Lynch, who is awesome, but it’s a bad sign with Lynch not around for a long time. After that, the women settled down and told an interesting story. Ripley avoided the knee attacks as best she could throughout the match, but then Flair got the advantage on the floor by sending Ripley’s head into the ring post and the knee attacks followed that. There was nothing Ripley could do at that point because Flair was able to wear her down leading to the championship win. This was probably the best Ripley/Charlotte match that I have seen them have so far and Charlotte’s best match since she came back from her long layoff.
Charlotte celebrated with the Raw Women’s Championship. They treated the title change as a big deal and the fans reacted to it in a big way. There were boos, but also some cheers too.
Analysis: I’m happy for Charlotte. She is a hard worker that gets a lot of heat from fans because she is booked so strongly, but she’s so talented in the ring.
There were commercials for WWE going back on the road and some Peacock show. There was also an Applebee’s commercial featuring WWE stars.
Shinsuke Nakamura and Rick Boogs were backstage with Riddle complimenting Boogs on what he does. Riddle wishes his best bro Randy Orton was there and claimed that Randy was one of Boogs’ biggest fans. Riddle said he’s never said that, but he knows what Randy thinks. Riddle asked Boogs to play Randy Orton’s theme music, Boogs said no at first and then Riddle started singing Orton’s song, so then Boogs played it on the guitar. Nakamura did the Orton arm pose. Kevin Owens stood behind them shaking his head.
Analysis: That was funny. Good comedy spot.
It’s Men’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match time. The Raw announcers were calling this match. Kevin Owens was out first to a huge ovation. Riddle was out next on his scooter with the fans chanting “bro, bro, bro” for him. King Nakamura was up next with Rick Boogs playing the electric guitar with him. I miss Pat McAfee on commentary for this entrance. Riddle was dancing to the song while the fans hummed along with the Nakamura song. Ricochet was next and he got a decent reaction, but not as loud as the other faces. John Morrison made his entrance with his buddy The Miz in the wheelchair and Morrison told Miz he needs to do this on his own. Big E got a pretty good reaction from the crowd for one of the favorites in the match. Seth Rollins was the biggest heel of the match, but there was still a big reaction to him as the biggest name in the match. The last man to enter was Drew McIntyre with his sword. Big reaction for the babyface Drew, who put his sword into some grey object that was placed on the stage and the pyro went off. Drew had a serious look on his face as usual. He was ready to go.
Men’s Money in the Bank Contract Ladder Match: Kevin Owens vs. Riddle vs. King Nakamura vs. Ricochet vs. John Morrison vs. Big E vs. Seth Rollins vs. Drew McIntyre
The match started with some brawling. Rollins and Morrison were arguing on the floor, so Riddle kicked Rollins and Ricochet hit a somersault dive onto Morrison. Riddle hit a twisting dive off the ropes onto Rollins. McIntyre faced off with Big E in the ring with Riddle running into Big E, who hit a belly to belly suplex on him. Ricochet jumped onto McIntyre, who tossed Ricochet to the floor. Big E knocked somebody off the apron. Big E faced off with McIntyre with Drew hitting a belly to belly suplex. Big E sent McIntyre to the apron and Big E hit a running Spear to tackle Drew out of the ring. That was a fun exchange. Owens brought in a ladder, Nakamura kicked him down and Nakamura suplexed Owens on a ladder with KO landing with his left knee hitting the ladder. Morrison climbed up the ladder, Nakamura shoved the ladder and Morrison did a flip that landed on his feet. Morrison hit a twisting dive over a ladder onto Nakamura. The fans chanted “Johnny Drip Drip” as Morrison did a climb for the ladder, but Nakamura stopped that with punches. Nakamura applied an armbar on Morrison on the ladder. Rollins with a springboard knee on Nakamura. Rollins and Morrison worked together to stomp on Nakamura. Rollins and Morrison knocked Nakamura, Big E and McIntyre off the apron with a ladder. Riddle ran right into a double team ladder attack from Rollins and Morrison. Morrison with a Samoan drop on Riddle on the ladder. Ricochet back in, but he was given a back body drop onto a ladder bridge. Morrison dropkicked a ladder into Big E on the floor. Owens grabbed Rollins out of the ring, Morrison saved Rollins and Seth cleared off the top of the announce table. Rollins tossed the top of the announce table on Ricochet on the floor. The fans chanted “we want tables” as a ladder bridge was set up. Owens sent Morrison and Rollins into the barricade. Owens was limping on his left knee. Owens with a kick to the ladder while Morrison and Rollins held it, which led to Owens hitting a moonsault onto the ladder on both guys. Morrison and Rollins did a double team Falcon Arrow on Owens onto the side of the ladder. That looked brutal. McIntyre was back in with punches, chops and then Rollins hit a forearm on Drew. Morrison with a kick followed by a Rollins elbow that sent McIntyre onto a ladder. Morrison up top, he did a twisting splash and he hit McIntire with an elbow drop while Drew was on the ladder. Rollins hit Morrison with the ladder to knock him out of the ring. Four of the faces went after Rollins and Riddle hit Seth with an RKO. Nakamura sent Ricochet to the floor. Riddle and Nakamura each blocked kicks, then they each connected with a kick and McIntyre hit a double Claymore kick on Nakamura/Riddle at the same time. McIntyre hit a Future Shock DDT on Big E. McIntyre hit a reverse Alabama Slam sending Ricochet face first into a ladder against the turnbuckle. McIntyre ran the ropes and the big man hit a somersault dive onto a bunch of guys on the floor. McIntyre avoided a Rollins attack and hit a Glasgow Kiss headbutt. McIntyre hit the Claymore Kick on Rollins as well. McIntyre climbed the ladder, but Veer and Shanky showed up to pull him down. They are Jinder Mahal’s buddies, which led to Jinder showing up with a steel chair. Mahal hit McIntyre in the ribs and multiple chair shots to the back. Mahal ordered Veer and Shanky to take Drew to the back, so that was it for Drew.
Analysis: That interference is something I predicted and I’m sure most people did as well. I think we can pencil in McIntyre vs. Mahal at SummerSlam.
Riddle did a ladder climb, Ricochet jumped off the ropes onto the ladder. Riddle sent Ricochet into the top rope and then Ricochet did a springboard somersault attack onto a bunch of guys on the floor! Holy shit that was amazing! The fans chanted “holy shit” for it as well. Riddle and Ricochet fought on a ladder. Rollins was on another ladder, Big E took him down and then Riddle hit multiple RKO’s including an RKO on Ricochet off the ladder. Rollins hit The Stomp on Riddle. Nakamura hit the Go To Sleep knee on Rollins! Nice. Morrison back in with the drip stick water spray to Nakamura. Owens was limping around and hit a Stunner for Morrison along with a Stunner for Nakamura as well. Ricochet blocked a Stunner by Owens, but KO hit a Popup Powerbomb. Owens climbed the bigger ladder in the ring, he reached up, but Rollins was there to punch the bad knee and Rollins gave Owens a Powerbomb on the ladder bridge by the apron to the table. Holy shit! Owens landed high on his back/neck area. The referees checked on KO, but I think Kevin was okay. That was a brutal bump. The fans chanted “this is awesome” for them. Rollins climbed the ladder and Big E was there to stop Rollins with punches. Big E had Rollins on his shoulders and Big E hit a Big Ending from the ladder. Big E climbed the ladder, the fans were cheering, Big E reached up and Big E won Money in the Bank! Yes! It went 17:40.
Winner: Big E
Analysis: ****1/2 That was an awesome ladder match. Big E getting the win was the popular choice and maybe the obvious choice (he was my pick), but that’s okay because it’s the right choice. There were so many cool moments in this match like that spot from Ricochet after he was knocked off the ladder and hit a dive on the floor. I was really impressed by Rollins and Morrison working as the veteran heels that were on the same page until Rollins turned on Morrison. I’m not surprised that McIntyre was taken out, but he did look strong while he was out there. Riddle was terrific in terms of his facial reactions to everything going on in the match and hitting RKO’s on a lot of guys. Kevin Owens looks like he got hurt with a knee injury and then he took a brutal bump through a ladder that was absolutely brutal. Big E hitting the Big Ending on Rollins off the ladder was a huge spot that was certainly a good way to put an end to the match because nobody is going to get up from a move like that. As Big E climbed that ladder, the reactions from the crowd got louder and they really wanted him to win. It was a cool moment. What makes the match even better is that the right guy won and it’s easy to like what they did in the match because of that. (My original rating for this match was ****1/4 and then when I watched it again on Monday morning I bumped it up to ****1/2 as one of the best MITB matches ever.)
Big E celebrated with the Money in the Bank briefcase. They showed some replays. There was even more of a celebration for Big E holding the briefcase. Big E was shouting “This is my time” and he’s right about that. Big E celebrated at ringside.
Analysis: I’m genuinely happy for Big E. Great guy that has worked hard during a nearly ten-year career in WWE, he has broken out as a tag team wrestler and is on his way to the top as a singles competitor. Winning Money in the Bank certainly will help him get there. A reason people like Money in the Bank so much is because it’s a valuable tool to elevate a midcard wrestler to main event level. Big E is so well-liked, he’s talented and he’s ready. He was a great choice to win Money in the Bank and I’m so happy for the guy.
There was another WWE Applebee’s restaurant commercial. There was a plug for SummerSlam on August 21.
The Smackdown announcers commented on Big E’s huge win and talked about SummerSlam a bit.
Seth Rollins was shown walking backstage. Kevin Patrick showed up for an interview. Rollins said that he shouldn’t have even been in that match, he should have been getting the Universal Title match and complained about Edge taking his spot. Rollins said he’s not waiting and he’s going after whoever is the champion after this next match.
Analysis: Rollins vs. Edge is expected to happen at SummerSlam, so the tease continues.
The video package aired for Roman Reigns defending the Universal Title against Edge. I think this feud has been really well built with Edge looking impressive in the lead up to the match and Reigns selling a lot for him.
Edge made his entrance to a huge ovation. The fans popped so loud for him. This is my favorite entrance in wrestling history and it’s so great to see it in front of a loud crowd again with the full pyro display. I’m so happy for Edge being able to continue his career at a high level. I first saw this guy wrestle in the indies here in Ontario nearly 25 years ago and he’s still one of my favorites.
There was a delay for the entrance of Roman Reigns making the fans wait. Reigns made his entrance as the Universal Champion with Paul Heyman holding the title in his hands. The Reigns entrance takes a long time because The Undertaker retired, so somebody has to take four minutes to get to the ring. I’m kidding. Calm down, Undertaker fans. It’s going to be okay. Reigns held up the Universal Title as the pyro went off on the stage. They stood in the ring for the championship introductions from Greg Hamilton. This has a big fight feel to it and I swear I tweeted that before Cole said it.
Universal Championship: Roman Reigns (w/Paul Heyman) vs. Edge
Reigns and Edge had a long staredown to start as the fans chanted for both guys. They locked up going into the turnbuckle with Reigns shoving Edge in the face. They did the same spot with Edge in control leading to Edge doing more of a slap to the face. Edge with a takedown then some head-slapping to the back of the head. They did an exchange going into the ropes leading to Reigns hitting a shoulder tackle that knocked Edge out of the ring. Back in the ring, Edge with an arm wringer and then an armbar into the shoulder. Reigns rocked Edge with a forearm to the face. Reigns with a headbutt and an elbow smash to the back of the head. Reigns with repeated clotheslines against the turnbuckle. Edge wrenched the left arm against the top rope. Edge sent Roman’s left shoulder into the ring post multiple times. Reigns avoided a takedown and he bailed to the floor. Heyman gave Reigns a bit of a pep talk, so Reigns went back into the ring with punches. Edge blocked a clothesline with a kick and a knee to the back sent Reigns out of the ring. Edge went after Reigns with Roman hitting a Samoan Drop on the floor. Reigns broke the count to send Edge into the ring post with Edge getting back in the ring before the ten count. Reigns stomped on Edge and Reigns dumped Edge out of the ring. Reigns sent Edge into the steel steps two times leading to a two count in the ring. Reigns worked over Edge with multiple forearms and a headbutt.
Reigns sent Edge shoulder-first into the ring post similar to what Edge did to him earlier. Reigns sent Edge shoulder-first into another ring post. Reigns hit a suplex for a two count. Reigns grounded Edge with a headlock for a few minutes, Edge came back with body shots and Reigns stopped him with an uppercut punch. Edge was against the ropes, so Reigns capitalized with the Drive By dropkick on the apron for two. Reigns set up in the corner, Edge slowly got up and Edge avoided a Superman Punch for a backslide pin for two. Both guys hit boots to the face at the same time. They exchanged forearms to the head, the fans reacted to every shot, Reigns went for an uppercut, Edge avoided it and Edge hit a sitout neckbreaker for a two count. Good nearfall. Edge looked out into the crowd, the fans got louder and Edge made the comeback. Edge with a clothesline, Reigns with a boot, Edge with a flapjack and Edge hit the Edgecution DDT for two. Edge with forearms to the face. Edge set up Reigns on the top rope, but Reigns knocked Edge down. Reigns was on the turnbuckle and Edge sent Reigns into the top of the ring post. Edge stomped on Reigns, who was upside down against the turnbuckle and Reigns collapsed. Edge applied the submission move like an STF that he has called a Glasgow Grip, but Reigns was near the rope. Edge turned the submission into more of a Crossface and Reigns got his right hand on the bottom rope to break the hold. They were over 20 minutes into this match.
Edge set up in the corner for a Spear, but Reigns caught him and applied a Guillotine headlock submission. Edge tried to fight it out, Reigns had the Guillotine locked in even more and Edge managed to fight out of it by tackling Reigns outside the ring through the ropes. Reigns charged for a Spear on the floor, Edge moved and Reigns went crashing through the barricade at ringside. Edge didn’t want referee Charles Robinson to count. Edge ran at Reigns on the floor and Edge tackled Reigns through another barricade at ringside. Edge picked up Reigns and brought him back into the ring for one…two…and no because Reigns got the right shoulder up. Edge went for a DDT, Reigns got out of it and punched Edge. Reigns hit a Superman’s Punch on Edge leading to Edge bumping into referee Charles Robinson, who bumped into the ropes. Heyman let Reigns know that the referee was down. Reigns broke the steel bar off the bottom of the steel chair. The referee rolled out of the ring selling a knee injury. Reigns had a big bruise on the left side of his forehead. There were WWE Medical personnel that checked on Robinson at ringside. Edge fought out of the attack from Reigns and Edge hit repeated headbutts. Edge put the steel bar into Roman’s mouth and he pulled back on it with Reigns looking like he was going to pass out, but that’s when The Usos ran out there. However, Rey and Dominik Mysterio prevented The Usos from getting into the ring. Rey and Dominik jumped onto The Usos at ringside to stop The Usos. Edge had the steel bar in Roman’s mouth. Seth Rollins showed up at ringside and went into the ring with a superkick to Edge’s head. Reigns tried to follow up on that, but Edge managed to hit him with a Spear. Edge covered, there was still no referee and then referee Jason Ayers slid into the ring to count one…two…and no. The fans chanted “this is awesome” due to all of the action and drama. Rollins showed up at ringside again, Edge kicked him off the apron and when Edge turned around, Reigns hit a Spear on Edge to get the one…two…and three for the win. It went 33:10.
Winner by pinfall: Roman Reigns
Analysis: ****1/4 An excellent match as expected here. Some of the things towards the end will prevent me from rating it higher, but I understand why it was done because we know Edge vs. Rollins is planned for SummerSlam and that’s why they involved Rollins in the finish. The referee bump was needed to make it look like Edge had the match won when the second referee showed up. From a logical standpoint, the second referee should have shown up way earlier than he actually did, but they do it that way to delay that two count that Edge got where he nearly won. I thought the first third of the match was probably too slow just because they were doing the feeling-out process and I don’t think it was needed. When things picked up, it came across like yet another outstanding championship match from Reigns with Edge more than holding his own against his younger opponent. I liked having the Mysterios take out the Usos because that’s another thing that happened that made it look like Reigns might lose, but Reigns found a way to win again. Heel champions can win clean at times for sure. However, losing cheap like this is certainly fine with me. It fits with the kind of character that Reigns is. I liked the match a lot.
After the match, Seth Rollins went after Edge again with punches to keep Edge down for a bit. Rollins got in the face of Roman Reigns and wanted to face Reigns in a match. Rollins told Reigns if it wasn’t for him (Seth) then Edge would be champion. Edge got back up and knocked Rollins out of the ring. Edge sent Rollins over the barricade. Edge and Rollins went brawling into the crowd.
Reigns stood tall in the middle of the ring with the Universal Championship on his shoulder and Paul Heyman presented him with a microphone. Reigns: “Now the whole world can acknowledge me.”
And there is John Cena! Wow. What a huge ovation for John Cena wearing a green and yellow shirt along with the jorts. That was one of the loudest pops I have heard in a long time. This was insane! It’s so loud there. Cena’s hair is a bit different than what we were used to, but he was in great shape as usual. The announcers were going crazy and so were the fans.
Cena got into the ring with Reigns as the fans were standing and cheering at this sight. Cena did the “you can’t see me” hand gesture at Reigns. Cena posed on the turnbuckles while Reigns looked at him. That was the end of the show.
Analysis: This was a lot of fun. What a great moment for John Cena, who deserves a reaction like that and a lot of respect for everything he has done in his legendary career over the last 20 years. I think maybe they could have got physical with a brawl and have Cena clear the ring of Reigns, but maybe WWE didn’t want to have Reigns look weak like that. I just think if you had Cena do his spinning slam and then Reigns roll out to the floor before the Five Knuckle Shuffle it could have worked. What they did here is fine because it tells the audience that Cena is back and tune into WWE TV to find out. Cena is advertised for Raw this week although I expect him on Smackdown as well.
Obviously, this will lead to Reigns vs. Cena at SummerSlam in Las Vegas in front of about 40,000 fans or so. That’s going to be awesome. I look forward to the promos and the build to that match.
Here is Cena’s post-show speech for the crowd.
This event had a runtime of 3:20:09 on WWE Network.
Five Stars of the Show
- Big E
- Roman Reigns
- Seth Rollins/John Morrison
- Charlotte Flair/Rhea Ripley
John Cena gets an honorable mention too.
I’m going with an 8.5 out of 10 for this show. I thought about 8.75 or 9 if there was a five-star match, but without that, I think 8.5 out of 10 is very fair.
This was an awesome show. The last three matches really stood out to me and helped make this the best WWE PPV of the year so far. The Men’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match was my favorite of the show and seeing Big E made me feel genuinely happy. That match was put together so well with some memorable endings and the right finish. The Roman Reigns/Edge match wasn’t a technical wrestling classic, but it was a very good main event match even with a referee bump and Seth Rollins interference. I also thought Charlotte Flair and Rhea Ripley did a tremendous job in their match. The crowd didn’t seem interested early as they chanted for Becky Lynch (no sign of her on the show), but then Flair/Ripley worked so hard and had such good match that the fans treated it like a big deal. Love to see that.
John Cena’s return to end the night was incredible. That truly was one of the loudest ovations I’ve ever heard. I know it was rumored for a while, but until it happens, you just never know, right? Cena vs. Reigns at SummerSlam will be a huge match for sure. I like both guys a lot and I think you can tell that WWE fans have missed Cena based on that reaction he got. That’s one of those reactions you should probably watch again just to take in how loud it was.
Shoutout to the crowd in Fort Worth, Texas for some loud reactions all night long. We all missed hearing fans at wrestling shows. Houston was great on Friday too. Fort Worth was awesome tonight. It made the show better for sure. I had people on Twitter complaining to me about Peacock’s service. I’m sorry you guys had issues with it in the US. Here in Canada, no issues for me with WWE Network. Hopefully Peacock figures it out.
I think we have a new leader for best WWE PPV of 2021. It is Money in the Bank.
Here’s my ranking of WWE PPVs in 2021 so far.
Money in the Bank (July 18) – 8.5
WrestleMania 37 (April 10 & 11) – 8
Royal Rumble (January 31) – 8
WrestleMania Backlash (May 16) – 7.75
Elimination Chamber (February 21) – 7.25
Hell in a Cell (June 20) – 7
Fastlane (March 21) – 6.5
Thanks for reading this review. My contact info is below.