How WWE Should Rewrite History with 2nd Women’s MITB Ladder Match


The WWE SmackDown women’s division is set to receive the rarest of opportunities—a chance to revise and revamp history.

Billed as momentous and historic, the first-ever women’s Money in the Bank ladder match instead became a controversial lightning rod. The image of James Ellsworth unhooking the briefcase and dumping it into his main squeeze Carmella’s lap irked much of the audience. A seminal moment in women’s wrestling became all about a little weasel of a man.

The backlash to Sunday’s pay-per-view bout may have inspired a rewrite.

On the June 27 edition of SmackDown, WWE will give itself a Money in the Bank mulligan. The blue brand’s general manager, Daniel Bryan, decided to strip Carmella of her victory on Tuesday’s show and book another ladder match with the coveted briefcase up for grabs.

To know how best to handle this rematch, WWE has to dig in and understand why so many hated how things went the first time around.

For one, the match must go on longer. Carmella’s win came too quickly, the climax hitting before the action had a chance to reach a true apex.

The second-shortest Money in the Bank ladder match ever wrapped up at 13 minutes and 14 seconds. That’s less than half the time the men got that night, per the Internet Wrestling Database.

WWE should clear out plenty of space on the next SmackDown and let these women go wild for 20-plus minutes.

There will be chances to create electricity, more room to insert big moments. While Charlotte Flair, Becky Lynch and the rest of the field put forth great effort in Sunday’s match, the end result was not the usual human demolition derby we see in these matches.

Flair dove from off the top rope onto Tamina and Natalya.

In the sequel, she needs to moonsault from the high rungs of a massive ladder. Natalya needs to powerbomb someone through a ladder. More steel needs to be bent; more bruises need to paint the flesh of these warriors.

These contests are built around breathtaking moments, and there weren’t quite enough of them in the first go-round.

The ending must be more definitive, too. Many criticized the poor optics of a man essentially winning a women’s match, but beyond that, the execution was off.

The climax felt unfinished. There was too much uncertainty floating around when Carmella clutched the briefcase.

Ellsworth’s involvement befuddled the referees. So the match ended with a huddle of refs unsure of what to do. They bickered. They wavered.

It’s almost never a good idea to end a match with the spotlight on the officials. That doesn’t make for classic moments. And while some have praised the finish, a vocal portion of the fanbase hated it.

There should be no ambiguity this next time.

The same winner should emerge on SmackDown, though.

Carmella should still cheat but get the glory without Ellsworth.

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