John Cena vs. Dolph Ziggler - Ladder Match for the World Heavyweight Championship Money in the Bank contract
With history on the line, how much would you be willing to sacrifice? What lengths would you be willing to go to? How far, how fast and how hard would you climb to etch your name in the annals of WWE legend?
It’s a question John Cena and Dolph Ziggler will have to answer at WWE TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs, when The Showoff will put his most prized possession on the line (no, not his abs) against the Cenation leader in a Ladder Match: the Money in the Bank contract for the World Heavyweight Championship.
And no, “history-making” is not hyperbole in this case. Cena is the only Superstar in WWE history to cash in his own Money in the Bank contract and fail to win a World Title as a result (he redeemed a WWE Championship contract at Raw 1,000 and beat WWE Champion CM Punk by disqualification, earning him the victory but denying him the prize). And only one Superstar in history has ever lost his Money in the Bank contract in a one-on-one match . So for Cena, TLC represents an opportunity no other Superstar has ever had: a second chance and, more importantly, an opportunity to rectify his failure at Raw 1,000 and end 2012 with the World Heavyweight Title firmly in his sights.
For Ziggler, however, the stakes are higher. The Showoff had to fight and claw to get his hands on the contract in the first place, and minus some early almost-attempts at redeeming the prize, Ziggler has proven quite stingy in his willingness to cash in. But while The Showoff has left the incumbent titleholder Big Show to his own devices against Sheamus, he’s very quietly become a force to be reckoned with. In the last month alone, Ziggler has amassed a series of impressive wins over Randy Orton, including one in a Traditional Survivor Series Elimination Tag Team Match in which Ziggler emerged as the sole survivor. He’s also taken Cena to the limit in a one-on-one match on Raw, a surge indicating The Showoff’s time to seize the prize is likely fast approaching.
But now, he may not get the chance. While Ziggler is reaching his apex, Cena has been operating at his own for some time. As a previous Money in the Bank winner and a two-time World Heavyweight Champion himself, the Cenation leader will find himself in a very familiar, very comfortable position at TLC. Ziggler, on the other hand, is in a precarious one. The Showoff is all momentum at this point, and there’s no Superstar who can take that away faster than Cena. Granted, this is not the same Ziggler who wheeled and dealed his way to a tainted World Title victory in 2011. This is not even the same Ziggler who won the Money in the Bank contract this past July. This is something far tougher than that. Something much closer to the top-tier wrestler he has always claimed to be.
But is it enough? History looms large for both Superstars. One can rewrite it, and one can avoid ending up on the wrong side of it. Only one question now remains: What are they prepared to do?