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Published: July 16, 2013
By Jared Silberkleit - Money in the Bank 2013 was a classic story of excellent wrestling hampered by poor booking. The in-ring quality of the show was very strong, but bad finishes, many of which were very anti-climactic, plagued many of the matches. With better booking, this easily could have been a really great PPV despite a weak midcard. Both Money in the Bank ladder matches were very exciting and the world title matches were enjoyable as well. Had this show hit its full potential, it could have easily been WWE’s PPV of the year thus far.
This was a super fun way to kick off the PPV. Lots of crazy and innovative spots throughout this one and good storytelling with Cesaro/Swagger and Sandow/Rhodes respectively working together throughout the match. Early on Cesaro hit a gutwrench suplex to Cody onto a ladder leaning in the corner. Barrett ripped a rung off a ladder and started beating Sandow with it. Swagger yanked Barrett off a ladder and Cesaro met him on the way down with a huge uppercut. Ambrose countered a slam from Swagger off a ladder into a DDT. Cody gave Cesaro a muscle buster onto a ladder leaning in the corner. Cool spot where Ambrose “skinned the cat” on a ladder that Cesaro/Swagger were holding up only for them to use the ladder to dump him to the floor. Cesaro stood on Swagger’s shoulders to try and reach the case but Cody dropkicked them and they fell down. Cody and Ambrose fought at the top of a ladder and Cody knocked Ambrose off, but The Shield ran out to attack Cody before he could win. The Usos then run out to attack The Shield and they all brawl on the floor. Ambrose climbs the ladder again but Cody shoves it over and Ambrose falls onto the pile on the floor. A bloody Cody is about to grab the case when Sandow comes out of nowhere, shoves him off the ladder, and climbs up to get the case for the win. Surprising finish to a really good match. Tons of great, unique spots and it was laid out well to tease Ambrose winning and get the crowd to rally behind Cody. Very strong opener. Match Time: 16:24 Star Rating: ***3/4
After this we had a terrible segment that belonged on Raw. Brad Maddox came out for a long promo on Vickie, heeling on the fans a little and airing a video package of some of her most embarrassing moments. This went on forever and was a waste of time.
This was a match. Slow stuff early with Axel in control for several minutes. Both guys blocked each other’s signatures before Miz got the Figure 4 and they did a long spot where Axel struggled before reversing it and Miz eventually reversed it back. Axel hit the Perfect-Plex for a near fall. Miz chased him on the floor before Axel kicked the ropes into his face and got the pin with a cravat facebuster. Average match with a dead crowd. Match Time: 9:20 Star Rating: **
Last month was a bit better than expected, but this time these girls just had a typical WWE women’s match. Kaitlyn was clunky in some spots. AJ got the heat by working the shoulder. Kaitlyn came back with a backbreaker and hit a reverse DDT for 2. Kaitlyn knocked AJ off the top but Big E caught her on the floor for the save. AJ got the win by making Kaitlyn tap to the Black Widow. Not good but pretty average for the Divas. Match Time: 7:04 Star Rating: *3/4
This just didn’t turn out good. These guys had absolutely no chemistry with each other and the whole match was just really awkward. Ryback beat on Jericho early, with Jericho getting a hope spot before Ryback drops him with a clothesline. Ryback hits a falling splash off the middle rope before knocking Jericho off the apron into the announce table. Ryback blocks the Walls of Jericho and gets a near fall after the Shellshock and a powerbomb. Jericho hits a Codebreaker through the ropes and gets a near fall after a high cross. Jericho misses a Lionsault and lands on his feet but Ryback rolls him up for the win. Very flat finish to a clunky match. These guys just couldn’t put together a cohesive match despite some cool bits here and there. And the monster Ryback needing a clumsy roll-up to beat Jericho? Really? Match Time: 11:22 Star Rating: *3/4
These guys were having a very strong match before it was practically ruined by a terrible finish. Ziggler hit a series of elbow drops during his shine early before Del Rio took control, tossing Ziggler into the barricade and stomping his head. Del Rio missed the body guillotine and crashed to the floor. Dolph came back with a super X Factor. Del Rio avoided the Famouser and hit a German suplex for 2. Dolph then hit the Famouser for 2. Dolph caught Del Rio coming off the top with a huge dropkick for another near fall. AJ’s music then hit and she came out, and Dolph told her to leave. Huge DDT from Ziggler for 2. Del Rio with a reverse superplex and a low superkick for a pair of near falls. Del Rio went for another kick when AJ nailed him with the Divas title for the DQ. Total BS finish right here. Despite the storyline progression this came across as cheap in a PPV world title match. The match was very good prior to the ending, with lots of nice near falls and the crowd super into Ziggler, but the finish really killed it. Match Time: 14:28 Star Rating: ***
This might have been the best match of Mark Henry’s career. Henry methodically wore down Cena early, front suplexing him on the steel steps and hitting a body guillotine. Henry picked Cena up by his legs and swung him headfirst into the barricade. Cena tries to lift Henry but collapses under his weight. Cena fights back with punches before finally knocking Henry down with a couple shoulder blocks. Cena hits the 5KS and goes for the AA but again collapses. Henry picks Cena up but Cena counters with a DDT before hitting the AA for 2. Cena leaps off the top but Henry catches him and hits the World’s Strongest Slam for 2. Funny business with Henry distracting the ref with a chair and exposing a turnbuckle, but Cena sends Henry into it and applies the STF. Henry shoves Cena into the ref and kicks him low for a near fall. Henry goes for the WSS again but Cena escapes and puts Henry in the STF for the submission. Slow, but good match with Cena having to overcome Henry’s size and bring the giant down. The crowd got into it and both guys used their signatures well. Not sure if making Henry tap out was the best idea but this was a really solid match with good storytelling. Match Time: 14:43 Star Rating: ***1/4
Somewhat surprising to see this match go on last, but several of the participants have closed out Raw over the last several weeks. This got far more time than anything else on the show. Bryan, Punk, and RVD were very over as expected, with Sheamus catching most of the boos. Van Dam shined early, hitting his usual kicks before an almost-botched rolling thunder to Bryan on a flat ladder. Sheamus climbed a ladder, only for RVD to shove it over, causing Sheamus to land on the falling ladder. Sheamus hit a Finlay roll to RVD on a flat ladder. Crazy spot where all six guys climbed two ladders in the middle of the ring and all fell down going for the briefcase. Bryan and Sheamus fought atop a ladder, with the crowd chanting “Yes” for Bryan and “No” for Sheamus. Sheamus took a bump after latching onto the case and dangling in mid-air. Punk sent Sheamus face-first into the mat by crushing him underneath a ladder. Orton with an exploder to Punk onto a ladder leaning in the corner. A ladder tipped over with Christian and RVD on top, but RVD saved himself by stepping onto another ladder set up next to it. RVD then hit an insane splash off the tippy-top of the ladder onto Christian.
Bryan hit his series of kicks, alternating between RVD and Sheamus before dropkicking a ladder into Orton in the corner, hitting a suicide dive to Punk into a ladder pile on the floor, and hitting a double missile dropkick to RVD and Sheamus. Bryan knocked Sheamus off the top with a ladder, sending him crashing through a ladder bridged from the apron to the announce table. Just as Bryan got near the case, Curtis Axel ran down to ringside, attacking him with a chair and hitting the cravat facebuster on the floor. Punk then popped up and gave Axel the GTS. Paul Heyman then ran down to ringside, berating Axel for messing things up for Punk. But just as Punk climbed a ladder, Heyman swung a ladder into Punk several times, knocking him off. The side of Punk’s face was covered in blood. RVD climbed again, but Orton yanked him off and hit a mid-air RKO. Orton then climbed up and got the case for the win. Very surprising finish, as most had expected and hoped that Bryan would win en route to a SummerSlam title match with Cena. Orton doesn’t really need the case and Bryan winning made the most sense on paper. This wasn’t one of the best MITB matches but it was still a great main event with some pretty awesome spots. Although things were never moving at a crazy, breakneck pace, the action was never dull and nobody got lost in the shuffle here. This was an excellent return for RVD, as the crowd ate up his offense and he hit the big “holy s***” moment of the match to stand out. One can only hope that Axel’s interference won’t derail Bryan’s main event push and lead to a SummerSlam match that no one would want to see. Heyman’s turn on Punk was extremely well done and was a key moment to start the build to Punk/Lesnar. Match Time: 26:38 Star Rating: ****
Overall PPV Rating: 7.5/10
Tagged with: Ambrose, Cody Rhodes, Cool Spot, Ddt, Dean, Fandango, Ladder, Match, Money In The Bank, Nbsp, Ppv, Ring Quality, Shoulders, Slam, Storytelling, Suplex, Swagger, Uppercut, Wade Barrett, World Heavyweight Championship