On Tuesday the 3rd of September on Nick’s Quick Wits, he spoke about the “Lost value of the World Heavyweight Championship” (http://www.wrestling-edge.com/nicks-quick-witsthe-lost-world-heavyweight-championship/). He listed many reasons for this, but I’d like to add one further reason, a reason that seems to be repeating itself again, and that is the path each Money in The Bank (MITB) winners follow after their big win.
We will start the MITB winners from last year. Starting with John Cena who won the RAW / WWE Championship MITB briefcase. He became only the second WWE MITB winner to not cash-in by coming down to the ring when the champion was injured. John picked his date and challenged CM Punk “like a man” on RAW, and gave Punk time to prepare, basically saying that the WWE title should be fought honourably, and not won by attacking an injured champion. Now he became the first man not too successfully cash-in the briefcase, (due to interference from The Big Show), but was made to look strong (as he always does) even in losing, and made himself and the WWE title the main focus of the WWE.
After winning the World Heavyweight MITB Dolph Ziggler went on a to lose matches and /or feuds against Chris Jericho, Randy Orton, John Cena (the WWE MITB winner), Alberto Del Rio and (in tag team) Hell No. In fact in 2012 Dolph Ziggler while having the most matches on TV and PPVs in the year (90), he had the most loses also in 57. That’s a winning percentage of less than 50%, not a percentage your second main event champion should have.
In the end he cashed in his MITB contract the night after Wrestlemania on a weakened and beaten up Alberto Del Rio. While it was a great moment to watch, and the great result of 8 months of wondering will he /won’t he cash it in, due to all those losses Dolph Ziggler had, he didn’t feel like a worthy World Heavyweight Champion. What made it even worse was in his first title defence he lost the title back to Alberto Del Rio. From this loss, Dolph Ziggler has slipped down the roster again, so far down that at Summer Slam he was in a mixed tag match, while (last years other winner) John Cena main evented Summer Slam.
So for all intents and purposes, the World Heavyweight Championship was won and lost by a mid-card performer. This doesn’t give the title much value in terms of importance of winning and what it can do for a superstars career.
Let’s move to our MITB winners this year. And we will start with the WWE Title briefcase holder Randy Orton. Since winning the briefcase Orton has already become WWE champion at Summer Slam. In John Cena’s absence he was also hand picked by Triple H to be the new ‘face’ of the WWE. He has his own security in The Shield, and Since Summer Slam has come out on top of Daniel Bryan for the past 3 weeks. This showed how important it was to win THIS briefcase, in that it has led the winner to the very pinacle of the WWE.
Our World Heavyweight MITB winner Damien Sandow since winning the briefcase has not faired so well. He has had his MITB brief case stolen and thrown into the Ocean, as well as lost twice (including the match at Summer Slam) to his ex-best friend Cody Rhodes. He has been made to look like a fool by Rhodes, and there is more talk online about Cody Rhodes being a future champion than Sandow. Then on RAW this week Cody Rhodes gets fired by losing a match against Randy Orton (the WWE MITB winner), which just goes to show which MITB winner has been the more dominate after their win. With Rhodes being fired the big pay-off match everyone was hoping at Night of Champions looks less likely now, a match that if Sandow won, would of returned some of his lost momentum.
Damien Sandow has also has lost twice in a week to current number 1 contender for the World Heavyweight Championship RVD and reading today o Wrestling-Edge, Damien Sandow lost to R-Truth on WWE Main Event! While he is telling us all that he is currently our “uncrowned World Heavyweight Champion“, he doesn’t look or feel like a legitimate future World Heavyweight Champion at this time.
The sneak cash-in of the MITB contract is one of the great things about the concept. However if the superstar who cashes-in the contract is seen to look weak, scared or on a big losing streak, then once they become champion, it makes the title look weak. The MITB contract is a great way to move people to main event status and has done that with the likes of Edge, CM Punk, RVD and Daniel Bryan. In fact if you look at when Daniel Bryan won his MITB briefcase, after his cash-in on a fallen Big Show he went on to feud and beat both the Big Show and Mark Henry which meant he became a respected World Heavyweight Champion.
But for every success story of a World Heavyweight MITB winner, there is a Jack Swagger and now Dolph Ziggler. A superstar whose push to main event and champion, via a MITB win, ending up as a nightmare and a big fall for each superstar. Before Damien Sandow cashes-in his contract, he needs to start making us fans believe that when he does he deserves the title, that he is a legitimate and worthy champion, someone who looks like he belongs at the top of at least the Smackdown side of the WWE, Damien Sandow (and the World Heavyweight Champion MITB winner) should be looked at a superstar who is capable of holding the World Heavyweight Championship title for a while and not just…dare I say it….be a transitional champion.
So come on WWE writers, give Damien Sandow an opportunity to show us that he is in fact a future World Heavyweight Champion, have him start winning matches and feuds, make him look like a champion (maybe a winning feud against Christian would help) and not just someone holding the title while Alberto Del Rio has a week or two off.
Hooroo and see you next week.