Heck of a match set up by Shane McMahon last night on SmackDown for their next PPV Money in the Bank. The Money in the Bank match itself is always exciting and this year's field could produce a classic. Here are the six wrestlers that Shane O'Mac announced to be in the match last night:
There's always a chance more people could be added to the match later but let's go off the assumption these are the only six wrestlers in the match, which I think is likely. The only other additions I could imagine would be someone from New Day or a returning Chris Jericho or John Cena. But if any of those people would return for the event I'd think they are in a separate match or segment to help fill out the card a bit. So let's assume it's just these six.
This is 100% just the fan in me speaking, not the highly respected professional wrestling analyst you've all come to appreciate, but I think this is match Dolph Ziggler wins. I know, I know....but hear me out.
Let's eliminate Shinsuke, AJ, and Kevin Owens as an entire group right away. Shinsuke just debuted and while giving him the MITB briefcase right away could be fun, I'd imagine they have different plans for Nakamura coming out of the gate. And, elephant in the room with Shinsuke, I think the MITB winner has to do some work on the mic to hype up his cash in and I don't think Nakamura could do that. I'll also eliminate AJ and KO from winning just because they are in a feud together right now for the United States title and both could easily slide into the WWE Championship picture in a moments notice without the MITB briefcase. So I think you give it to someone who could use that boost to get to the Championship scene.
So that leaves Sami, Corbin, and Dolph. Sami with the briefcase could be fun but I just don't know if I see him as a legitimate WWE Champion yet. Maybe I would if held the MITB briefcase around for half a year or so, but I think that's still a leap for him so I'm not picking him to win this match this year. Baron Corbin could use it and I could see him as a WWE Champion, especially with the briefcase in his possession for 4-6 months. I just think him winning would be pretty deflating and bland. I think Corbin will amount to something but right now it's still a work in progress. Him winning one of the most exciting matches of the year would be pretty depressing. I need some excitement with my MITB winner. So I'm going with Dolph.
Go back and watch this video of Dolph cashing in his briefcase on the night after WrestleMania four years ago. That's easily in the Top 5 moments/matches in wrestling in the past decade. Maybe it was just a perfect storm but that moment was electric.
And maybe another MITB run is the only thing that could salvage Dolph's credibility at this point. WWE has done such a poor job of following through on anything with Ziggler that even I, one of his biggest fans, see him as damaged goods right now. There's so much talent and potential there but I'm not sure how much toothpaste you can put back into his tube right now. He's "much needed" heel turn that we waited years for resulted in him losing his first feud with Dean Ambrose and being relegated to feuding with Kalisto and Mojo Rawley.
But maybe if you give him the MITB and let him go back to his highest moment in his career, you could restore some of that. Maybe the MITB briefcase gives Dolph some of his edge back. And it gives him some credibility and believability. I'm not sure what else would work or be believable with Dolph at this point. So I think it's almost now or never. I'm picking Dolph.
One hundred days until the Wisconsin football season opener. With it also being the start of Spring, that makes it a great time to start planting those Rose buds in your garden to make sure you have them ready at the end of the season for the Badgers. I haven't looked at any preseason rankings yet but I'd assume the Badgers will start somewhere in the Top 10. Possibly even the Top 5 depending on how the votes go.
Remember those Where's Waldo books you played with when you were a kid? There was always a lot of things to look at and you know what you're looking for but you just can't find it. You're sure that it's there somewhere but it takes a really long time to find what you're looking for and then eventually you just give up. That's the same feeling I just felt when I went through Wisconsin's 2017 football schedule and tried looking for where their Loss on the season could come from this year.
I don't think they'll go undefeated in the regular season, so I know that Loss is somewhere in that crowded schedule, but I just can't see it yet. 11-1 on the year and trip to the Big 10 Championship game seems pretty likely to me. I'm sure there is a Loss somewhere on the schedule this year but I just can't find it right now, so eventually I just gave up looking for it.
I remember trying to find the real Waldo in those books years ago and there were always a couple times when I thought I had found him, only to realize it was an imposter and I had to start all over. That's the same thing that happened to me trying to find a Loss on Wisconsin's schedule.
At first I thought maybe on the road in Game 3 at BYU could be the Loss but then thought better of that. Bucky should handle the Cougars even on the road. That should be a nice battle for the Badgers and a great test to start the year, but it should be the Loss
So then I saw the first conference road game on the schedule, Game 5 at Nebraska, and thought that could be the Loss. But then I remember the last time Bucky went to Lincoln and had a miraculous comeback that was part Joel Stave magic and part Husker collapse. I just don't think Nebraska has the stones to put away a great team like Wisconsin, so I can't see that being the loss.
Then I saw the big matchup on the schedule. The marquee showdown. Michigan at Wisconsin, November 18th, Game 11. That's a huge game and has the potential to be the Loss on Bucky's schedule. But everything should be in Wisconsin's favor in that matchup. That should definitely be the host of College GameDay that week, which would make it a night game, at home, under the lights of Camp Randall. Michigan will have the Ohio State showdown looming over them the following week. And Wisconsin will be riding high after their beatdown of the Hawkeyes at home the previous week. Sure a Loss could come from the hands of Harbaugh and the Wolverines but it doesn't seem likely.
So maybe it's the final game of the year at border rival Minnesota? Could the Badgers' Loss on the season come during the Battle for The Ax? That game would be on the road and with a Wisconsin perfect regular season on the line, the stakes would be pretty big. And anything can happen in a rivalry game. But Wisconsin has won Paul Bunyan's ax the past 13 years. It's really hard to see Minnesota as a threat to Wisconsin until that day actually happen. I don't see that as a Loss, sorry Goldy.
So I'm just giving up looking for the Loss on Wisconsin's schedule for next year. I'm sure it's there somewhere but I just can't reasonably find it anywhere. In the meantime while we are waiting for it to make it's appearance to us, make sure you have that Rose garden planted and ready for December.
Y'all see this story about how Mike Golic and Mike Greenberg apparently hate each other right now and can hardly function together. Being a media report, it's probably more likely true then not but I will say this: My spidey-senses are up on this one.
Could this just be a media ploy to get more eyes on their show as it comes down to it's final months? Just a month ago we had the massive cuts at ESPN and all the talk surrounding that move about how their ratings are down across the board due to various reasons. Personally, I used to watch Mike and Mike almost every morning before I went to work for about 2-3 years straight. I bet I haven't watched more than a combined 30 minutes of their show over the past 2-3 years. I would guess I'm not the only one in that boat. I haven't looked into this but I'd guess the ratings for Mike and Mike are down a significant amount from where they were 3-5 years ago. With their showing coming to an end at the end of the year, could this just be an exaggerated story to get some publicity about the show before it's over?
I'm sure there were some hurt feelings with Greenberg decided to move on from the show. Were they "end the friendship and never talk to each other again" level of hurt feelings though? I think there's a strong possibility that this story is greatly overblown with the intent to gain some buzz for their final stretch. Just something to think about.