CB’s World: Saving Money in the Bank (WWE, John Cena, CM Punk, Vince McMahon)

So let me get this straight.

In just one week, we went from the brilliance of this…

…to being reduced to this?

Really?

Seriously, REALLY?!?!?!

As you can tell, I am extremely disappointed at the direction that the formerly buzzworthy CM Punk – John Cena storyline has gone. Below is what I said in the comments section during Blair A. Douglas’ Interinactivity this week, when discussing TNA’s inability to compete with WWE vs. WWE’s ineptitude in big moments despite them having all the tools they need to take real chances and keep the buzzworthiness going. And I quote:

Blair, I’m sure you either heard about or saw the Cena-Vince exchange on the Fourth of July episode of Raw. In case you didn’t, the crux of the matter is this: WWE turned what was one of the most buzzed about moments in a long while (Punk’s promo and all the unpredictability that came with it) and essentially screwed the whole thing up by having Vince tell Cena he’s fired if he loses to Punk at the PPV.

Oh, and not only that, WWE also confirmed to GLAAD officials that CM Punk’s contract is legitimately expiring on July 17th, following Punk’s gay slur incident with fans in Australia that he later apologized for.

So basically, in a nutshell, WWE went from making MITB a must-see PPV filled with intrigue and turned it into just another run-of-the-mill event where “anything can happen” will be exactly what doesn’t happen, where Super Cena will either save the day or John will be fake fired for the second time in MONTHS.

And therefore, I think WWE is actually worse than TNA, in the sense that the company has a freaking monopoly on the business, has amazing production values, and has the ability to actually take chances … and yet they just recycle the same stuff over and over and over again.

Merch sales or no merch sales, it’s getting extremely boring out there in WWE land.

Therefore, whether it’s the PG push, Linda McMahon political campaigns, activist group sponsors, or having to answer to publicly traded company shareholders, WWE just is not offering and never will offer edgy programming ever again. When Vince McMahon said last Monday night that he now only likes to take calculated risks, he’s exactly right, and that is one instance where he definitely was “shooting” the truth. But there really is no such thing as a calculated risk, is there?

After all, you’re either all-in, or you’re not. The WWE — in its current state — is not.

Two scenarios for Saving Money in the Bank

So here are my two scenarios for saving face with the Money in the Bank PPV. The first is my own idea, and the second came from the Comments thread this past week.

Scenario 1. Punk wins, and the chase begins

I said this during my discussion with Rhett Davis in The World of O’Really last week:

CM Punk will win the match at Money In The Bank, and he will leave WWE with the title, as part of a storyline, NOT for real. But this time, because Cena will then have been ‘fired’ (again), Cena will then have the freedom to chase Punk and the belt wherever Punk goes, and just imagine the buzz that would be created if Punk went to ROH with the WWE title, and then Cena followed him there.

At the very least, that would be a new and interesting twist on something we’ve seen in the past.

I’ll stand by those comments and say that if WWE pulled the trigger on that scenario, then I would change gears and say they went all-in.

Scenario 2. Punk wins, followed by TWO cash-ins

In the comments thread for last week’s World of O’Really column, myself, Wally Kovacs, sideshowbob, flamingwombat and others discussed the other possibility that would make MITB more noteworthy than if they simply run with Super Cena saving the day.

That would be Punk wrestling the WWE Championship away from John Cena, but then having to defend the title instantly because Vince McMahon makes the MITB briefcase winner challenge Punk so he doesn’t leave Chicago with the gold in hand. However, in an interesting twist, the first cash-in fails and Punk retains, so Vince makes the SECOND MITB briefcase winner challenge Punk also. Finally, this works out for Vince, and Punk drops the WWE Championship to a new winner that is not John Cena in Punk’s third consecutive title defense of the night. In a perfect world, that second cash-in would be from Alberto Del Rio, so his destiny could finally be fulfilled.

Either of those two scenarios outlined above would be fine with me. On another note, with CM Punk’s final Monday Night Raw appearance advertised for tonight, I will be very interested to see how far they let CM Punk go on the microphone. If they really want to generate more buys for Sundays PPV, my hope is that they let Punk go as far as he wants.

Well, that’s all from me this week — CB.

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