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On June 18, five women will have the opportunity to make history as they compete in the first Money in the Bank ladder match.
Charlotte Flair, Becky Lynch, Carmella, Tamina and Natalya will battle for a guaranteed championship opportunity that they can cash in at any point over the next year. Like Edge, CM Punk, Dolph Ziggler and so many other male Superstars before them, it’s a chance to create unforgettable moments that captivate fans and elicit enormous roars of excitement.
Which of the five Superstars is most likely to emerge victorious and claim their chance at immortality in the form of a briefcase?
Ahead of the first-ever encounter, we rank each of the women according to their odds of victory.
1 of 5
Tamina is a second-generation competitor, the daughter of the late Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka and the most physically imposing wrestler in the match.
Despite all of those attributes, there is an incredibly low likelihood that she will leave St. Louis with the Money in the Bank briefcase.
Over her seven years on television, Tamina has received a few championship opportunities but has never been taken completely seriously by the WWE Universe. Some of that can be attributed to the lackluster booking that has accompanied her, the rest to an in-ring skill set that does not compare favorably to that of her peers.
Simply put, Tamina employs a hard-hitting offense that lends itself to an enforcer, co-star role rather than that of a star.
Booking her to win the briefcase would be met with groans by an audience that has never once been given a reason to care about her beyond her legendary bloodline.
Without any single indicator that she is over enough for the role of champion—or even top contender—it would essentially be WWE Creative throwing away a monumental moment for the sake of shocking the audience.
When that happens, the reward rarely justifies the risk and the result is great regret.
Given that the strength of SmackDown Live has been its logical and focused storytelling (for the most part), a win for Tamina feels highly unlikely.
That is, unless the writing staff throws the entirety of its support behind her.
Likelihood of Victory: Nonexistent
2 of 5
There is no better, purer wrestler on the entire women’s roster than Natalya. A third-generation Hart family member, she has the ability to wear her opponent down with suplexes and slams, then twist them into submission with the dreaded Sharpshooter finisher.
Her legacy alone should have guaranteed her greater fame and success than she has earned to this point, but unfortunately uneven creative has doomed her to mediocrity.
Always the co-star and rarely the leading lady, she has not been able to garner any sort of connection with the audience that would allow her to build momentum and achieve the greatness she would seem destined for.
While she will likely be one of the workhorses of the upcoming Money in the Bank ladder match, she should not be considered a favorite to leave with the briefcase.
Why would she?
Her entire career has been dedicated to working hard, delivering when the spotlight is brightest and ultimately putting others over. Her selflessness has been an amazing attribute to management but somewhat of a detriment to herself.
Big bumps and in-ring legitimacy will be her contribution to the June 18 spectacle, but there will be no reward in the form of a golden opportunity.
Likelihood of Victory: Very low
3 of 5
Becky Lynch is the most interesting Superstar in the historical contest.
An explosive in-ring performer whose abilities earned her the status of SmackDown Live’s first female draftee, she has achieved great things as her first 12 months with the blue brand come to a close.
The first SmackDown women’s champion, she has already experienced the taste of gold and could use the Money in the Bank victory to catapult her back into title contention.
Factor in her unique, marketable steampunk look, and in-ring skills second only to Natalya, and you have someone who should be a shoo-in for the enormous honor the Money in the Bank briefcase would be.
Instead, her presence feels very much like Natalya’s; she’s a workhorse who can lay the groundwork for the match and absorb the nasty bumps that a fight like a ladder match demands, but the lack of energy surrounding her booking suggests a win may not be in the cards.
Lynch, despite her popularity, has been somewhat directionless since her rivalry with Alexa Bliss wrapped up in January. She has not been a priority and nothing that has happened over the last month or so would suggest that is about to change.
An extraordinary performance should be expected. A win? Not so much.
Likelihood of Victory: Average, leaning low
4 of 5
The real wild card of the Money in the Bank match is Carmella.
The Princess of Staten Island was in the midst of building momentum for herself with two straight pinfall victories over women’s champion Naomi when the focus shifted from a one-on-one bout to hyping the multi-women ladder match.
She has still remained prevalent—one of the favorites to dethrone Naomi—but there definitely feels like a loss of momentum has stricken Carmella as she prepares for the momentous bout.
In her back pocket, though, she has a secret weapon who may not only ensure her victory but also provide the match with some of its most memorable moments.
James Ellsworth has become one of the most charming villains on the roster, a simple heel whose obnoxious miscalculation of his coolness has endeared him to an audience constantly seeking fresh and new. He has repeatedly engaged in a war of words with Becky Lynch and should factor heavily into the ladder match when it comes to taking potentially dangerous bumps.
He could also assist Carmella in retrieving the briefcase and earning a shot at the SmackDown Women’s Championship whenever she sees fit.
That is a story that best suits the gimmick of Money in the Bank and would put tremendous heat on both Carmella and Ellsworth, an act that feels like it is just getting started.
Likelihood of Victory: High
5 of 5
Charlotte arrived on SmackDown Live after growing and evolving into the lead star in Raw’s women’s division. Her work with Sasha Banks broke boundaries and made history.
A five-time women’s champion, she became as big a star for that brand as Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins, Kevin Owens or Chris Jericho, and she helped carry the flagship at a time when it needed leaders.
She did not come to the blue brand to see her star diminished or her reputation tarnished. WWE Creative did not make the calculated decision to move her over to the Tuesday night staple without having a distinct plan for her.
Expect that plan to become more obvious June 18 as she competes in a match in which she is the clear favorite to win.
Charlotte is the face of the women’s division. She will lead it well into the future and provide it with the credibility and legitimacy Raw’s female roster is lacking in her absence.
Her run at the top of the division begins at Money in the Bank with a victory in the ladder match that propels her into a rivalry with Naomi, Lana or any other Superstar who may carry the gold in the foreseeable future.
At least it should.
Likelihood of Victory: The highest