0 of 8
If there were a fifth candidate to add to the so-called “big four” pay-per-view events in WWE, the most likely option would be Money in the Bank, which has become a staple of the year similar to what King of the Ring used to be.
This year, however, everything felt a bit bland as Money in the Bank 2017 was not only sectioned off as a SmackDown-only event, but heading into the show, only five matches were announced—three less than the average for a regular pay-per-view.
To say this made it feel like it was less important than previous years in at least some regard is not an understatement, but WWE tried to offset this.
Not only would there be a second ladder match, but for the first time ever, it would be representative of the women’s division, taking another leap forward in promoting that section of the roster to a more equal playing field.
Looking at the card, it was a mixture of serious potential and a bit of an empty feeling where fans could ask themselves if that was really all we were in store for.
With that being said, now that the event has finished, how did things pan out? Were there more positives or negatives throughout the night and what moments stood out from the pack for better or worse?
It’s time to look back on what happened at Money in the Bank 2017 and single out the biggest highlights and low points of the evening, presented in order of appearance.
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It’s basically a general rule of thumb that pre-shows range anywhere from awful to something you can entirely skip and not miss anything worthwhile.
This edition consisted of absolutely nothing that needed to be watched, including the tag team match between The Hype Bros and The Colons.
The Fashion Police have been more entertaining as of late and have been somewhat entangled in a feud with The Colons, so it made no sense to have these two teams face off.
If there had been a heel turn from Zack Ryder to start a feud with Mojo Rawley—or vice versa—it would have saved this from being more than just a boring filler tag match with no substance whatsoever.
2 of 8
The women’s Money in the Bank match is somewhat in the middle of the road of a highlight and a low point, as there were both good and bad things to pick apart.
Much of the criticism probably depends on your level of expectations you had going into the match and whether or not it could meet or surpass that level.
If you thought this would be an instant classic, you were wrong.
The spots were almost nonexistent with a laughable portion of the match where Becky Lynch and Natalya argued over who could use a ladder for a good few minutes.
Despite the lackluster match, the ending was hilarious and will be able to provoke lots of conversations over how controversial of a decision it was.
For James Ellsworth to take the briefcase down and toss it to Carmella, it leaves room for discussion that she isn’t the rightful winner and she may need to put that future title shot on the line in the future, possibly at Battleground.
It’s arguable that this will spark more attention than if a regular winner had just been crowned, so anything to get people talking is a good thing.
Also, the sheer fact that this match even happened at all is a positive step forward for the division, even if it left much to be desired.
3 of 8
The New Day and The Usos are capable of far better than what happened here as this match was sloppy all throughout.
Sometimes, the end can justify the means, but the finish of this segment was even worse than what came before it.
Count-out victories on pay-per-views are as cheap as WWE can get, since it benefits nobody. All it does is give off the impression that this particular event wasn’t good enough to do a title change or the writing team can’t think of anything to do and needs to stretch things out.
The count-out itself was awkward, too, as it was slow and lumbering with zero energy behind it.
All this amounts to is WWE telling the fans to hold off until Battleground for something to actually happen, which isn’t good enough when it comes to Money in the Bank itself.
4 of 8
By no means was the SmackDown Women’s Championship match a stellar segment that will be dissected for years to come, but while some things on this card fell short of expectations, Lana should have won over a few critics.
Not only did she look fantastic, she also was more athletic than most people in the WWE Universe seemed to be giving her credit for leading up to this event.
There were some botches and she still has much to learn, but we’ve seen far worse matches put on from people more qualified than Lana, so we need to cut her some slack.
Also, there was an interesting twist at the end of the match with Carmella teasing to cash in her Money in the Bank contract just to whet the appetite of the crowd for the weeks or months to come.
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While their segment itself was a bit underwhelming, the idea that Mike and Maria Kanellis are now on the SmackDown roster is a big benefit.
The blue brand desperately needed another heel in the midcard and it wouldn’t hurt the women’s division to include Maria in there as well.
In some aspects, these two can fill the role The Miz and Maryse take on Monday Night Raw as an obnoxious couple fans can’t stand to see tout how great they are.
Adding more talent to a roster is never a bad thing unless WWE just puts zero emphasis on them, but since these two were given their own segments on a pay-per-view instead of showing up on SmackDown, that’s a good sign for the future.
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By this point in the night, on a personal level, I had gotten too frustrated with the chaotic booking decisions happening on this card.
You may not feel the same way, and if you enjoyed this insanity more than I, you’ll disagree with this list of highlights and low points. For anyone who is on the same page, though, they will understand the disappointment.
Jinder Mahal retaining against Randy Orton wasn’t necessarily a bad decision, nor was much of the match leading up to that point, but the finish was once again a negative that hindered the whole segment.
What was the point in having the legends ringside? Cowboy Bob Orton was the only one who got involved as a story element while the others just sat there watching.
Then, after having a title match end in a count-out earlier, there was no consistency carried over here as referee Mike Chioda simply watched Orton destroy The Singh Brothers for a few minutes outside the ring.
All of this was just meant to be a distraction for Mahal to take advantage of and anybody who has watched WWE for a long enough time frame could see it coming from a mile away, killing any suspense.
This match could have had much more interesting stories being told and it could have been executed much better, but for whatever reason, it didn’t amount to anything close to its potential.
7 of 8
We’re fishing for highlights and in such a small pool of options, one of them should be that The Fashion Police weren’t overlooked on the card—at least, not entirely.
Their backstage promo inspired by Miami Vice was as funny as their segments have regularly been, with their giant cell phone labeled “property of Paul E.” to reference Heyman’s classic gimmick and their confusion at the use of a fax machine making some laughs.
Having a match against The Ascension is far from something to be particularly proud of for a tag team that was just challenging for the titles, but at least Breeze and Fandango were victorious.
For that matter, this is the most amount of attention Konnor and Viktor have had in months, so that’s a positive for them, too.
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By far the better of the two ladder matches in the night, this was much more on par with the standard quality fans expect out of this style of a fight.
Setting up Shinsuke Nakamura for the win and then subverting it was a nice touch, as it started to feel like Baron Corbin had less of a chance to pull off the victory with such attention put on him.
Obviously, the spots were the roughest throughout the night, particularly with the one Kevin Owens took from AJ Styles on the outside through one of the ladders.
This isn’t going to go down in history as the most entertaining ladder match, nor the most memorable, but on a lackluster card, it stood out as one of the best parts of the evening.
What do you think were the highlights and low points? Do you agree or disagree with this list?
Tell us your thoughts in the comments section below!
Anthony Mango is the owner of the wrestling website Smark Out Moment and the host of the podcast show Smack Talk on YouTube, iTunes and Stitcher. You can follow him on Facebook and elsewhere for more.