There’s a lot to do this week in the world of professional wrestling, so let’s get to it without further ado.
Although the card is not officially set, WWE presents Money in the Bank (MitB) on Saturday, July 2 on Peacock.
Announced so far, the men’s MitB match features Seth Rollins, Drew McIntyre, Omos and Sheamus while Alexa Bliss, Lacey Evans, Liv Morgan, Asuka and Raquel Rodriguez have been announced for the women’s match.
The Usos defend the WWE Undisputed Title against the Street Profits, United States Champion Theory takes on Bobby Lashley, Ronda Rousey defends the Smackdown Women’s Title against Natalya, and Bianca Belair defends the Raw Women’s Title against Carmella.
Originally, Belair was supposed to face Rhea Ripley, but she is absent after the operation.
Last weekend was not a good time for legendary former WWE referees.
On June 17, it was announced that Dave Hebner passed away.
Hebner’s greatest moment in professional wrestling came at the Main Event on February 5, 1988.
In a main event rematch of WrestleMania III, Andre the Giant “defeated” WWF Champion Hulk Hogan to end his four-plus years as champion.
Hebner was the assigned referee, but his “evil” twin brother Earl was hired by “Million Dollar Man” Ted DiBiase to referee under a “fake” storyline.
Earl counted Hogan’s shoulders down even though he kicked out before the two count, let alone three.
Andre was named the new champion and he relinquished the championship to DiBiase.
The title was retained and a knockout tournament was held at WrestleMania IV to crown a new champion, with the victory of “Macho Man” Randy Savage.
Dave Hebner moved backstage soon after while Earl will referee until 2005.
Dave also refereed the legendary classic between then-Intercontinental Champion Savage and Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat at WrestleMania III.
Airing Friday night on NBC, the live stream earned a 15.2 Nielsen rating and drew 33 million viewers, two records for American televised wrestling that still stand today.
Then last Sunday afternoon, it was announced that Tim White passed away.
White was one of André’s closest confidants and was his master on the road.
White’s most famous match was the brutal Hell in a Cell fight between The Undertaker and Mick Foley here in Pittsburgh in 1998.
He was injured in a 2002 Hell in a Cell match between Triple H and Chris Jericho, and the injury all but ended White’s in-ring career.
White’s Bar, The Friendly Tap, would be the site of several sketches over the years on WWE TV where fights would break out.
WWE’s creative mess is catching up
There’s no doubt that WWE is wringing out the well.
On the June 17 Smackdown, Brock Lesnar returned and was named Roman Reigns’ challenger for SummerSlam in Nashville.
This will be the ninth time the pair have faced off at a WWE special event.
Originally, Reigns was supposed to face Randy Orton, but he is recovering from an injury.
This amounts to what appears to be the only marquee match he can go on to put on.
WWE has no one to blame but themselves for not having the best stars to take on Reigns.
For over a decade now, WWE has sought to make its wrestlers equal and hasn’t built many new stars, if any.
No less than seven law firms are now involved in the ongoing legal mess with WWE, and it will be interesting to see how it all plays out.
Additionally, WWE Talent Relations Manager John Laurinaitis has been placed on administrative leave until further notice.
This Week in History, June 26
In 2001, A-Train (Albert) defeated Kane to win the Intercontinental title.
In 2005, in revenge, Shawn Michaels defeated Kurt Angle in a rematch of their classic WrestleMania 21.