For nearly 20 years now I have been watching Monday Night Raw religiously, however this Monday I was preoccupied until roughly 9 o’clock. I get home and try to catch up on what I missed from Raw, and I can’t believe what I’m seeing, thinking a mistake must have been made, or my eyes were deceiving me with what I was reading, but Damien Sandow cashed in his Money in the Bank briefcase. And lost. Now like any other good moment in wrestling history I’m sure this causes a lot of different feelings from the audience, and I’m sure everyone has their own opinion on the subject. Personally, more than anything I’m just bummed I didn’t get to watch the match as I’m told it was a great outing for both men. I’m glad Damien got a legitimate shot in the spotlight, if only for one Raw, and I’m even glad Cena’s back, healed up, without seeming to have rushed himself, obviously this is from what I’ve seen on TV, as I am not doctor.
Potentially this could turn into Damien Sandow having a heated feud with John Cena over the World Title, but honestly I don’t really see that happening. I would love to watch the work of both men and I would love for Damien to get that type of exposure, working with the biggest name in the company. I simply don’t see WWE going in that direction however. That does then pose the problem of what in the world Cena will do now that he is champion, will he hold it to WrestleMania? And more importantly I believe the person who takes that belt from Cena could be on his way to immortality, just like Daniel Bryan and his WWE Title match. Obviously Cena will have a story moving into the future, but I fear Damien might get lost now that he’s not the contract holder. I am a huge fan of Damien’s in ring work, his mic work, his look, his gimmick, I’m a mark for the guy, alright? I’m just hoping that he is able to claw his way closer to the top of the card, continues to be aggressive, even perhaps a more VILE side of Damien Sandow.
All that’s well and good, but it does not solve the problem of why the WWE would have Damien lose his contract on Monday Night Raw. This is just my thoughts on the situation, but here goes. Having Damien win the belt after cashing on Cena would have been ridiculous, I love Damien, but it just would not have made any sense. Had he cashed in on Cena at Hell In a Cell, after winning the title, with Cena showing more signs of being beat up than what we saw, to me would have been the best possible story, and is how I would have booked it. As for the opening segment making Sandow look weak, I actually think it was done the way it should have been (I’ve gone back and rewatched it). If Sandow had come down and just cashed in, they had a match and Sandow lost, that would make him look like an idiot. And further more, it would have stopped him from being a heel, he had to attack John Cena with the chair and briefcase, not only did it progress him as a villain, but it showed a vicousness to Damien previously unseen.
Now to me, my last paragraph made sense, but it did not answer the question of why the briefcase even had to be cashed in at all. Well perhaps WWE believes that Sandow would not be ready to hold the belt before the contract expired, so they had to get it off of him, and losing to John Cena doesn’t make anyone look weak, everyone’s done it. Let’s also remember that this does entail that Sandow will not be World Champion within the next year, just he’ll have to get an actual match to do so; which only equals a meaningful story for Sandow (hopefully). Also I actually enjoy the fact that briefcases don’t guarantee championships, it allows for more intrigue; and with Cena losing his briefcase match as well, it makes the briefcases seem more like something that is going on in WWE, instead of something that allows us to know who they’re going to run with next.
The rumour on the interwebs is that the cash in was done in an attempt to drive up ratings against stiff competition. And it did that. It was very entertaining, engaging content, that actually upset me because I wasn’t able to watch it live as it unfolded. Further this match, and turn of events, raises the prestige of the World Title, the fierce competition over the belt. As it stands right now, Cena is the holder of the secondary belt in WWE and having entertaining matches with up and coming talent, as a wrestling fan it’s hard to argue against that. It’s entertaining, it’s logical and has plenty of seeds spreading towards the future. Is it exactly what I wanted? Not even close, but it did take me off guard as a lifetime wrestling fan and made me want to watch next week’s show to see how they follow up on this turn of events. My hopes stand at keeping Cena away from the corporation angle for as long as possible until WrestleMania and continues to help the younger talents.
I’d love to know the Internets opinion of the opening segment of this week’s Raw, so please leave me your thoughts in the comment section below.