What do seven writers, seven wrestlers and a precious briefcase have in common? That my dear readers is the brainchild of my fellow writer Zack Krasney. Zack called out WWENews.net writers and challenged us to write about a Money in the Bank (MITB) participant and why their chosen performer should win the coveted title of Mr Money in the Bank. So, to Brogue Kick things off I’m going to tell you why I’m backing WWE’s ‘Great White’, Sheamus.
I know that some of you are wondering, “Why choose Sheamus to win Money in the Bank?” I pondered this myself. Let’s face facts – Sheamus holds a resume that would be the envy of any wrestler’s career:
- Two-time WWE champion
- One World Heavyweight championship run
- Royal Rumble 2012 winner
- Former King of the Ring winner
- Former United States champion
Given how many achievements he already has, why give Sheamus yet another one? Well, some critics feel that his babyface character is becoming stale, so I think that giving him the MITB briefcase could potentially freshen up his character. It’s the one major accolade that he has yet to achieve and what better way to motivate a determined babyface than giving him a new challenge?
WWE faces a challenge in finding the next Cena and it’s clear they’re trying to groom Sheamus for that role. Next to their number one babyface, Sheamus has the qualities that WWE craves for a marketable performer. He has the classic muscular physique, size and look that Vince McMahon and Triple H like in their performers. Plus during media interviews, Sheamus has an easygoing charm about him that a wider, more casual audience can warm to. For example, his work as an ambassador for the Be a Star anti-bullying campaign.
In terms of his in-ring presence, Sheamus’ red hair, build and untanned complexion makes him visually stand out from other performers. In the ring, he plays the babyface well, delivering solid matches while maintaining pace with technical guys like Daniel Bryan or slugging it out with super heavyweights like Big Show or Mark Henry.
Sheamus has also benefited from having Triple H as a mentor and this, along with an early main event run as WWE Champion, has given him a great foundation to build his career upon. Sheamus can carry handle the responsibility and the pressures of being the company man. Equally, Sheamus has also experienced adversity as he had to claw his way back up the card after receiving what we can only presume to be a humbling. Wearing a crown and green cape as King Sheamus will go down as one of the more forgettable moments of his career and the fact he thrived after that demonstrates his resilience. It echoes Triple H’s own journey back up the to the top following his punishment for the Madison Square Garden incident. In case you’re not aware, early on his career, Triple H was punished for breaking character as he hugged Scott Hall and Kevin Nash in the ring shortly before they departed for WCW.
Think back to when Sheamus last won Championship gold. His last notable victory was winning the World Heavyweight Championship at Wrestlemania 28 in an infamous 18 second victory over Daniel Bryan. Since then Sheamus has feuded with Alberto Del Rio, Big Show, The Shield, Mark Henry and recently Damien Sandow. These feuds have been adequate, but what Sheamus really needs is a career-defining rivalry. If he was holding the MITB briefcase, I think that this would give the babyface Celtic Warrior something to defend. Something that stirs his fighter’s pride.
I’d like the case to be the bullseye on Sheamus’ back. Or the reason for him feeling regret for coming up short after promising he would win. Whether he wins the case or not, there is an opportunity to use the result to facilitate more depth to his character. Babyface Sheamus could show some self doubt after almost winning and show the qualities needed to fight his way back up to the main event. Or the briefcase could be a means of generating a heel turn either by him or other babyfaces based on jealousy over who has the briefcase. There have been long-standing rumours of a program between Sheamus and Randy Orton, so why not use the briefcase as a source of conflict between these two potentially former allies?
Sheamus thrives when paired with contrasting characters and he would have the chance to display a more serious Celtic Warrior in contrast to the cold-blooded Viper. Orton – or someone like Wade Barrett who has an aura of a slippery, manipulative salesman about him – could subtly bully him and make him look bad in front of Raw authority figures like Vince McMahon or Vickie Guerrero. Let’s say Vickie makes Sheamus forfeit the briefcase and offers it to Orton or another manipulative heel. Sheamus discovers he’s being manipulated and asks supportive boss Triple H to help him confront Orton, win back respect from management and overcome his adversary to claim the case back. This would show that bullies have less power when victims speak out and take decisive action.
A warrior with wounded pride, showing vulnerability or standing up to subtle bullying may make Sheamus more compelling to watch and would move his persona from being the fun-loving guy to someone more three dimensional. On the other hand, it could also be the catalyst for an heel turn where an insecure, Sheamus will do everything it takes to win back the WWE Championship; at the expense of alienating his babyface comrades with his paranoid behaviour.
Creative musings aside, the match itself promises to be the most star-studded in MITB history. I would look for the Celtic Warrior to deliver a memorably brutal spot, such as when he powerbombed Sin Cara through a ladder during the 2011 MITB match. Given we have experienced competitors – Christian, CM Punk, Daniel Bryan, Kane, Randy Orton, Rob Van Dam – it looks like Kane and Sheamus will provide some smash mouth style to balance out the high flyers and technicians. Sheamus has fought everyone except Van Dam whose agility and quickness will provide an exciting contrast to the brawling Irishman. I wouldn’t be surprised if Sheamus relished Brogue Kicking Mr Monday Night in the face during an attempt at an audacious Five Star Frog Splash.
It’s worth noting that Sheamus competed in an excellent ladder match against John Morrison at TLC: Tables, Ladders and Chairs 2009 which showed that the Irish brawler could hold his own in a one-on-one outing. I particularly liked the psychology of the match where heel Sheamus worked on Morrison’s leg to ground the high flyer. Definitely well worth checking out if you haven’t already done so. However, history isn’t on Sheamus’ side in terms of victory at MITB. His sole outing saw Daniel Bryan unexpectedly triumph in MITB 2011 in a great match. Could history repeat itself?
In closing, I’ve outlined a potential scenario that would benefit Sheamus should he win MITB. Sheamus has proven that he can handle the pressure of being the man. He has the tools to succeed: great physique, distinctive look, solid wresting abilities and a persona that appeals to a wider audience. What I think he needs is an edge to his character to help him connect with fans as a babyface. And that’s why I’m stating that the case should be for Sheamus.
Keep an eye out for other articles in which our writers argue why CM Punk, Daniel Bryan and other participants should capture the coveted Money in the Bank briefcase. Thanks for reading!