WWE Money in the Bank 2013 predictions

WWE Money in the Bank 2013 predictions

With Money in the Bank mere days away, the WWE Universe is buzzing with speculation over which Superstars will come out on top at one of WWE’s wildest and most important pay-per-views of the year.

Who will strike pay dirt in the Money in the Bank Ladder Matches and leave Philadelphia with World Title Match contracts? Can World Heavyweight Champion Alberto Del Rio turn back the challenge of an incensed Dolph ZIggler? Will Mark Henry triumph over John Cena and finally lay claim to the WWE Title?

Find out how to watch Money in the Bank |  Don't forget to watch the Kickoff live stream

These are just a couple of the questions on the tip of the WWE Universe’s collective tongue. Join WWE Hall of Famer Howard Finkel and members of WWE.com’s editorial staff for match-by-match predictions of all the big battles this Sunday!

The Usos vs. WWE Tag Team Champions Roman Reigns & Seth Rollins (Kickoff Match)

WWE Money in the Bank 2013 predictions

WWE Hall of Famer Howard Finkel: Roman Reigns & Seth Rollins have fended off all competitors, thus far, during their reign, but in Jimmy & Jey Uso, they will face a duo that is intent on seizing the moment that is upon them. I do like The Usos to pull off the upset in this match and garner the titles. Their time has come. WINNERS: The Usos

Tom Herrera: Let's be honest: There are many in the WWE Universe who believe The Usos won't last five minutes against The Shield with the WWE Tag Team Titles on the line. But stranger things have happened in these pay-per-view Kickoff bouts, and the twin brothers have a special combination of teamwork and fighting spirit that can crack The Shield. Still, expect Rollins and Reigns to prevail in a close one. WINNERS: The Shield

Alex Giannini: The Usos are an undeniably exciting and up-and-coming tag team, and the high-octane style they bring to every match is infectious. Too bad for them, then, that it’ll be Rollins & Reigns who reign supreme at the Money in the Bank Kickoff. WINNERS: The Shield

Anthony Benigno: Rikishi’s boys have toiled in the trenches and more than earned their spot to contend for The Shield’s titles, but Rollins & Reigns’ killer instincts will win out yet again. WINNERS: The Shield

John Clapp: Jimmy & Jey Uso might be the only tandem in WWE that is more cohesive, as a unit, than The Shield. Coupled with their newfound confidence, The Usos’ team chemistry will pave the way to an upset win. WINNERS: The Usos

The Shield: 3, The Usos: 2

Chris Jericho vs. Ryback

Howard Finkel: You’re always going to get an optimum effort from Chris Jericho when he’s in action. I wonder what Ryback’s mindset will be this Sunday, as apparently he does have some compassion that showed through this past Monday. Whether that lessens his focus toward Jericho remains to be seen, but when the dust clears, I see Ryback emerging victorious. WINNER: Ryback

Tom Herrera: Justin Gabriel learned the hard way what you get for calling Ryback a "whiner.” Chris Jericho — who has dubbed his Money in the Bank opponent "Cryback" — would be wise not to overlook The Human Wrecking Ball's hunger for destruction. As quickly as Ryback's mood has changed as of late, he could easily pull another 180 and turn back into a merciless beast. WINNER: Ryback

Alex Giannini: As much as I’d love to see Y2J down “Cryback,” I just don’t see the legendary competitor overcoming the ever-hungry Human Wrecking Ball. Look for Ryback to run over Jericho and leave the six-time World Champion Shell Shocked. WINNER: Ryback

Anthony Benigno: Can two failed attempts at the WWE Title cost the ravenous Ryback his bite? The evidence seems to suggest so. Look for Y2J to capitalize on the de-fanged “Wrecking Ball.” WINNER: Jericho

John Clapp: Ryback has appeared uncharacteristically human of late, and Y2J — despite an obvious strength disadvantage — is the type of calculating vet who’s capable of exploiting the Shell-Shocking Superstar’s weaknesses. WINNER: Jericho

Ryback: 3, Jericho: 2

Divas Champion AJ Lee vs. Kaitlyn

Howard Finkel: I’m interested in this one. AJ is one shrewd customer, both in and out of the ring. Yet Kaitlyn, who has a true friend in Layla, is more than ready for this rematch. I look for the challenger to regain the championship in what will be a very close encounter. WINNER: Kaitlyn

Tom Herrera: Kaitlyn definitely picked the perfect time (on Raw) to spear her rival like a shish kebab. After weeks of mental and emotional torment, Kaitlyn finally seems to have the battered Divas Champion AJ Lee at a loss for words and on the hunt for a new game plan just days before their pay-per-view showdown. Bank on the title returning to The Hybrid Diva as a result. WINNER: Kaitlyn

Alex Giannini: On paper, Kaitlyn should walk away with this one, but we all know how the former champion has fared against AJ Lee. With the pint-sized puppet master still firmly planted in Kaitlyn’s head, I think AJ will retain the Divas Title. WINNER: AJ

Anthony Benigno: AJ Lee’s mind games cost Kaitlyn the Divas Title, but all they’ve done is make her former best friend mad as hell. The “black widow’s” about to get chick-busted. WINNER: Kaitlyn

John Clapp: At WWE Payback, Kaitlyn was sunk by her own hubris. Smart money says The Hybrid Diva learned from her mistakes and AJ Lee’s week will end much the same way it began, with a spine-tingling spear. WINNER: Kaitlyn

Kaitlyn: 4, AJ: 1

The Miz vs. Intercontinental Champion Curtis Axel

Howard Finkel: Perhaps it was good for Curtis Axel to suffer his first loss under Paul Heyman’s management last Monday, thanks, in part, to the distraction by Miz. Come Sunday, Axel would have had the better part of a week to stem and stew about it, and I believe that the Minnesota native will get a measure of revenge on the challenger, and leave Philadelphia with the Intercontinental Championship still around his waist. WINNER: Axel

Tom Herrera: With CM Punk seemingly trying to distance himself from Paul Heyman, and Brock Lesnar momentarily out of the spotlight, Heyman has been unwaveringly focused on his youngest client's success. Curtis Axel continues to impress, backing up his boasts with his technical prowess in the ring. On Sunday, Axel's star should grow with another milestone win — his first successful pay-per-view title defense. WINNER: Axel

Alex Giannini: The Awesome One has been on a roll lately, and though Axel has shown flashes of greatness in a short amount of time, I’m banking on The Miz taking back the Intercontinental Title. WINNER: The Miz

Anthony Benigno: It’s been a rough week for Paul Heyman, but the mad scientist and his followers tend to come through in the clutch on pay-per-view. It won’t be perfect, per se, but Axel rolls on. WINNER: Axel

John Clapp: After tasting defeat for the first time since coming under Paul Heyman’s tutelage on Raw, expect Curtis Axel to rebound in a big way, with a vicious performance against an overmatched Awesome One. WINNER: Axel

Axel: 4, Miz: 1

World Heavyweight Championship Contract Money in the Bank Ladder Match

Howard Finkel: I’m impressed with this assemblage of Superstars. It’s a great blend of youth, smarts and savvy. To me, these Money in the Bank Ladder Matches are condensed into four words: “Right place, right time.”  It’s a tough choice, but I am going to go with Wade Barrett to stand tall at the end. Why? Why not! WINNER: Barrett

Tom Herrera: All seven competitors in this match are young and hungry. What sets Dean Ambrose apart from the pack is the killer instinct that propels Superstars to glory in the most chaotic of scenarios. Where others may hesitate, the U.S. Champion will relentlessly strike to find an opening and climb up that ladder, and, in turn, the championship ranks in WWE. WINNER: Ambrose

Alex Giannini: Like the All-Stars Match, this Ladder Match is loaded with talent and choosing a winner seems like a crapshoot. Still, whenever Dean Ambrose is involved, I tend to lean his way. And just imagine a looming cash-in with the rest of The Shield behind him … WINNER: Ambrose

Anthony Benigno: The playing field is so wide open in this collection of rising stars that it’s tough to pick one. But with a string of losses over the past few weeks, look for one former champion to rediscover his brutal side and hammer his way to a contract victory. WINNER: Barrett

John Clapp: There’s no overstating the benefit of experience in an environment as dangerous and unpredictable as the Money in the Bank Ladder Match. With that in mind, the edge among these rising stars belongs to the ever-resourceful Cody Rhodes. WINNER: Rhodes

Barrett: 2, Ambrose: 2, Rhodes: 1

Money in the Bank All-Stars

Howard Finkel: This is going to be a good one. All-Stars? An understatement!  All seven superstars entered are Money in the Bank battle-tested, which makes this encounter a must-see. Plus there’s some bad blood amongst the participants. Additionally, factor in the expected phenomenal reception that the returning Rob Van Dan will receive. Whose endurance will take him to the top, literally? CM Punk gets my vote. He’s on his game big time and will find a way to garner the briefcase for a third time. WINNER: Punk

Tom Herrera: Daniel Bryan appears to have the most fire in his belly and all the momentum in the world, but there's one man who's been silently plotting to steal the show — and the Money in the Bank briefcase. Rob Van Dam has shown the ability to thrive in Ladder Matches, and he'll no doubt pull out his entire arsenal of high-flying maneuvers to make his return a rousing success. WINNER: Van Dam

Alex Giannini: There’s so much talent in this one match that it’s almost impossible to pick a winner. But with Rob Van Dam returning — in Philly — Mr. Monday Night will have the wind at his back and the fans on his side, and I’m willing to bet that’ll carry RVD to the top of the ladder. WINNER: Van Dam

Anthony Benigno: Rob Van Dam’s shadow looms over this stacked competition, but Daniel Bryan’s momentum should carry the former World Champion to glory for a second time. WINNER: Bryan

John Clapp: There are almost too many variables to consider in this bout, especially with the wild card element of a returning RVD. Nonetheless, nobody appears quite as eager to force his way back into WWE Championship contention as the always-volatile Randy Orton. WINNER: Orton

Van Dam: 2, Punk: 1, Bryan: 1, Orton: 1

Dolph Ziggler vs. World Heavyweight Champion Alberto Del Rio

Howard Finkel: I like The Mexican Aristocrat to prevail and retain his title. Don’t get me wrong, as I think that Ziggler will be at the top of his game. But in the long run, Del Rio has not forgotten any of the “embarrassments” that Ziggler has bestowed upon him, and will give a receipt back this Sunday. WINNER: Del Rio

Tom Herrera: Whether it's the effects of his concussion or the shame of losing the World Heavyweight Championship, something's been seriously eating Dolph Ziggler. The Showoff's wildly random attacks on Alberto Del Rio have thrown a wrench into Del Rio's cool and cocky demeanor, and that element of surprise should be exactly what Ziggler needs to reclaim the coveted title. WINNER: Ziggler

Alex Giannini: Del Rio’s newly (re)found mean streak may have catapulted him back into championship glory, but he did so on Dolph Ziggler’s time. And Ziggler knows it. Look for The Showoff to regain his momentum, and his title, on Sunday night. WINNER: Ziggler

Anthony Benigno: Dolph Ziggler’s newfound attitude has won over most haters, but he seems more concerned with cracking jokes than taking names. Expect Del Rio to tap into his rediscovered cruelty and keep his title safe. WINNER: Del Rio

John Clapp: The Showoff’s been acting like a man possessed since losing the championship gold, and Alberto Del Rio will suffer from the absence of Ricardo Rodriguez ringside Sunday. WINNER: Ziggler

Ziggler: 3, Del Rio: 2

WWE Champion John Cena vs. Mark Henry

Howard Finkel: From Mark Henry’s faux retirement speech to the events of this past Monday night on Raw, The World’s Strongest Man won the war of words with Cena. In examining the in-ring action, I fully expect Cena to be tested like never before. Henry will give The Champ a true run for his money, but Cena’s stamina and endurance will be a prevailing factor in his gaining a hard-fought win. WINNER: Cena

Tom Herrera: There are a lot of things that Mark Henry does, most of which involve punishment and suffering. What he's been doing to John Cena that gives him the edge is straight-up toy with The Champ’s head. When you combine the clear physical advantage with the added mental advantage, there's no amount of heart that will help the Cenation leader cling to his WWE Title. WINNER: Henry

Alex Giannini: Mark Henry is one scary, ticked-off dude right now, and he’s got an enormous chip on his shoulder. But, as he’s done his entire career, WWE Champion John Cena will find a way to walk out of the Wells Fargo Center with his title intact. WINNER: Cena

Anthony Benigno: John Cena has conquered odds time and again, but with Mark Henry surging towards his biggest match ever, let’s call it what it is: The Champ is scared. WINNER: Henry

John Clapp: The World’s Strongest Man has done a wonderful job getting in the head of John Cena. Unfortunately for Henry, such mind games tend to bring out the best in the Cenation leader’s competitive spirit. WINNER: Cena

Cena: 3, Henry: 2

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