#21 Seth Rollins vs. Dean Ambrose vs. Dolph Ziggler vs. Kofi Kingston vs. Rob Van Dam vs. Jack Swagger — Money in the Bank Ladder Match for a WWE World Heavyweight Championship Contract (Money in the Bank)
WHAT WE SAID: Six Superstars went to Boston to climb their way into the World Title picture. They wouldn’t be upstaged. Jack Swagger powerbombed Rob Van Dam from a ladder to the mat. Kofi Kingston hit a reverse Boom Drop on top of a ladder. Dean Ambrose superplexed Seth Rollins to the ring, which Dolph Ziggler followed by dropkicking Ambrose with a ladder. The six competitors made spontaneity the painful norm.
Ultimately, improvisation nearly cost Ambrose his moment, though, as WWE trainers forced him to the back after he injured his shoulder with a devastating DDT on Swagger. But while Rollins scaled the ladder with no one in sight, the crowd chanted, “We want Ambrose!” prompting The Lunatic Fringe to re-enter the fray. With his arm hanging at his side, Ambrose booted Rollins from the ring with several chair blasts until a Tombstone from Kane allowed The Authority’s golden boy to become Mr. Money in the Bank. Rollins left with the contract, but his countless bruises served as painful collateral he’d never forget. — Jeff Laboon
WHAT THEY SAID: “That’s something you kind of dream about. The history of having that briefcase leads to being a WWE Champion most of the time. To know I have that in my possession and no one can take it from me is real special. And to do it with guys who are competing at that level — we had a hell of a Money in the Bank Match. It really was awesome from top to bottom, maybe one of the better ones in history. I was happy to be part of it and really psyched to come out on top. When you’re sitting on top of that ladder and you got that thing in your hands, knowing what’s inside of it and all that it means and what it stands for, it doesn’t really get any better than that for a young wrestler.” — Seth Rollins
‘Dean’s Dirty Deeds,’ 1996, Sony PlayStation
Starring: Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins
The eely Seth Rollins shattered Dean Ambrose’s world when he turned on The Shield to join The Authority, but he’ll come to rue the day. Ambrose knows exactly how to get under Rollins’ skin, and he isn’t holding back anymore.
In a mission to destroy Rollins’ life, you control Ambrose as he sneaks, stalks, commandeers and boobie-traps various items throughout arenas across the country to put egg on the face of Mr. Money in the Bank. In online Hot Dog mode, race your friends and sabotage one another with slippery hair gel, devastating popcorn kernels and vehicle-chasing Hounds of Justice.
But be careful, if J&J Security catches you creeping around, you’ll find yourself in a none-too-pleasant meeting with the COO.
The superstars of WWE are not, generally, short on confidence. Former heroes such as Hulk Hogan, Stone Cold Steve Austin and The Rock were hardly shy, retiring types, after all. Still, it takes a certain kind of self-assured wrestler – or astounding arrogance, take your pick – to deliver a victory speech before his match with one of the biggest names in the business has even started.
Yet this was exactly how Seth Rollins kicked off last weekend’s big Tables, Ladders and Chairs bout in Cleveland, Ohio, against John Cena. Maybe he had reason to be so confident. After all, Rollins is the man who would, later in the show, be called “the undisputed future of WWE”.
But despite Rollins repeatedly pummelling him into near submission, Cena managed to take advantage of late chaos in the ring and put Rollins through a fold-up table. Rollins was dazed and ultimately defeated.
But this minor setback is unlikely to leave permanent scars on one of the villains of WWE.
“My character is very polarising, sure,” says Rollins. “There’s a lot of stuff I’ve done over the past year that people haven’t been too pleased about – and to be the best at anything, you’ve gotta make some enemies.
“So call me number 1 villain, call me hero, call me top guy in WWE. Whatever you want, it doesn’t matter to me. I’m happy with what I’ve done to get here.”
Rollins certainly caused a stir when, in June, he took out his own teammates in The Shield faction with a steel chair. It might be understood that in wrestling, it’s every man for himself – but there was still a sense of betrayal. After all, Rollins had made his name with the group.
“Look, it had got to the point where it was time to make a statement for me,” he says. “The Shield had run its course as a three-man group, and we’ll go down in history as one of the greatest factions of all time.
The stars of The Attitude Era didn’t care for making friends. They wanted to be on top. Granted, every Superstar in the locker room today wants to be the WWE World Heavyweight Champion at the end of WrestleMania. But in the late ’90s, Superstars and Divas like Triple H and Lita had a killer instinct. You had to bring your absolute best every Monday, or you wouldn’t be on the show the following week.
Seth Rollins knows that pressure well. He made an immediate name for himself as a main-event player with The Shield. He’s jumped from the TitanTron, crashed through tables and betrayed close friends to climb the WWE ladder.
He sees 15-time World Champion John Cena get recognized as the face of WWE and the last guy to grab the “brass ring” — aka becoming the top star in sports-entertainment — and he isn’t in awe. Chances are he’d have the same disdain for The Rock, Mankind or any other Superstar that stood in the way of him getting to the top
@JoeyStyles: I don’t think anyone reading this has any doubt that in a traditional one-on-one matchup, John Cena would defeat Seth Rollins by pinfall (AA), submission (STF) or disqualification (J&J Security interference). However, to win a Tables Match, one simply needs to put his opponent through a table, which is infinitely easier than achieving pinfall or submission. Remember Cody Rhodes defeating Big Show when the giant accidentally stepped on and broke a table? How about Sheamus winning the WWE Championship by countering a superplex attempt by Cena and simply pushing off the Cenation leader, who fell through a table? Furthermore, there are no count-outs or disqualifications, so Jamie Noble and Joey Mercury can, and will, interfere from start to finish. The stipulations of this match set the table for Rollins to get a cheap win. See what I did there? WINNER: Seth Rollins
@HowardFinkel: John Cena loves adversity. Seth Rollins loves to be the straw that stirs the drink. Their collision course this Sunday should be something to see. Rollins knows that if he wins the match, Cena loses the No. 1 contender’s position, and the spotlight will shine on him. Based on a few recent “discussions” with Brock Lesnar’s advocate, Paul Heyman, I feel that Rollins will turn those discussions into motivation, which will not only bring him the victory this Sunday, but also serve notice to Heyman that Mr. Money In The Bank remains poised and confident to cash in the contract and take the next step to immortality. I am not selling Cena short by any means; I just think that Rollins is on a roll, and is destined for success this Sunday. WINNER: Seth Rollins
James Wortman: Anything goes in a Tables Match, and with a veritable army on his side — including the likes of J&J Security, Big Show, Kane and Luke Harper — Mr. Money in the Bank has proven that he’s going to make full use of the lenient stipulations at WWE TLC. Expect Rollins to obliterate Cena’s WWE World Heavyweight Title No. 1 contendership in a shower of splinters. WINNER: Seth Rollins
Scott Taylor: With John Cena’s spot as the No. 1 contender to the WWE World Heavyweight Championship on the line, you can bet the Cenation leader will rise to the occasion. It also doesn’t hurt that the 15-time World Champion’s Attitude Adjustment is tailor-made for a Tables Match. Seth Rollins may see himself as the “undisputed future of WWE,” but John Cena is still the undeniable present of WWE. WINNER: John Cena
John Clapp: Even though Cena has more experience in Tables Matches, I wouldn’t be surprised if the match stipulation works to Seth Rollins’ favor for reasons other than the no-disqualification aspect. He’s squirmy and acrobatic, which could make him supremely tough to plant through a table. Plus, Mr. Money in the Bank is an innovator in the ring, and that gives him an advantage in this unusual contest. WINNER: Seth Rollins
Seth Rollins: 4, John Cena: 1