Welcome to round two of the Money in the Bank series of articles, this one I’ll be taking on my selection for the old “Smackdown” briefcase for the World Heavyweight Championship. While I think I had a bit of a longshot with my selection of Kane in the WWE championship article, I think I’ve hit this one out of the park. When you look at all the names in the WHC Money in the Bank matchup there was one name that stood out to me more than anyone else. I’m a fan of the entire crew, although I would have maybe changed a person here or there, but my eyes directly went to the man who’s been slowly hinting a tweener role lately, the tough guy from England, Wade Barrett.
Watching the original season of NXT my original favorite, as with everyone else, was obviously Daniel Bryan. As the season went on and the characters got chances to develop and become more comfortable in front of the WWE audience, one man stood above all the others in my opinion, that man would go on to lead the best new faction we’ve seen in wrestling in ages. I got to know a little about Wade while watching the old FCW shows on Brighthouse, once he showed up on NXT he drew me in as a fan. Wade Barrett, to me, was everything William Regal was back in the day. The biggest difference was that he had the personality that Regal was always lacking when it came to getting over with the American audience, while he could go; Regal was always more of a worker than a star. Barrett has the makings of a superstar; he just needs the chance to break out.
The big moment that everyone always goes to in Barrett’s career to this point is his leading role when The Nexus came to WWE television. This group had a very solid run with a hell of a memorable start, nobody expected it and as a result Barrett was thrust into the forefront of the company. This storyline lead to a feud with the biggest name in the company today, John Cena. His feud with Cena put Barrett into the main event, something that seemed a bit crazy for a newcomer that most of the audience only heard of during a made up competition show. There was something about this man that made you dislike him, maybe it was his attitude, maybe it was his arrogant look, and maybe even his snake-oil salesman like delivery to his promos, all we knew was that we did not like this man. As a fan of the psychological side of wrestling I absolutely loved Wade Barrett for this, which is the main reason I felt I had to select him to win the Money in the Bank and get back into the main event scene where he belongs.
A big reason I think this is Barrett’s year to take the case is rather simple. I believe he’s been in line for this already and got passed over, coming back from a hellacious elbow injury and getting another run as the Intercontinental Champion has given him a boost in the eyes of the fans, as well as giving him some time to season himself again as a champion before finally being elevated to the next level. The IC title was always a stepping stone to the main event in the old days and Triple H seems to have a lot of that old school blood in him, making the title seem more of the “workers” belt like it was back when the names like Hennig, Michaels, Hart, Smith, and so many others carried the strap. I believe his run in the midcard as Intercontinental Champion was their way of testing Wade to see if he was ready to be thrust into the top of the card again, a test that I sincerely feel he passed easily.
While I believe in Kane, even I can admit that he’s a dark horse in the WWE championship matchup with so much talent around him. In the World Heavyweight Championship matchup you still have a ton of up and coming talent surrounding Barrett but he’s far and away the most likely to capture the case. You can make the case for anyone, from Ambrose to Rhodes, Sandow to Cesaro, and even Swagger and Fandango, but one man has been to the main event and deserves to finally get back there, and no way in hell do I mean Swagger. The way I see it breaking down is simple, Swagger and Cesaro develop tension, as will Rhodes and Sandow. Fandango will have some nice high spots but all in all he’ll fall short as he’s pretty much filler in this matchup. This leaves Ambrose and Barrett as the main men and I see Ambrose getting a bit longer run as US champ before he finally breaks through. The winds of change are blowing my friends, and Wade Barrett is on the verge of achieving his goal of becoming the first English born World Heavyweight Champion.