WWE Money in the Bank kicked off in Fort Worth, Texas as only the second live pay-per-view event since COVID-19 shut down the country in late 2019. The first match of the night was the women's ladder match where the rules were simple enough: the first woman to get to the MIIB briefcase wins a contract match for any title, good for an entire year. No pitfalls, submissions, or count-outs will offer a reprieve for this specific ladder match. Retrieve the briefcase or leave in defeat.
The first woman to enter the ring was 2018's MIIT winner, Alexa Bliss, who infamously held her contract for less than 3 hours before cashing in on Nia Jax and claiming her title. She was followed in quick succession by Liv Morgan (her first MIIT), and Nikki "ASH" Cross (her second MIIT). Next out was Natalya who was quickly joined by her tag-team partner Tamina, both women proudly carrying the championship belts. Zelina Vega entered the ring next, having only recently returned to the WWE in early July and was joined by Naomi almost immediately after. The biggest entrance pop went to Asuka, who is the favorite of the night and last year's MIIT winner.
Alexa perched on the turnbuckle like an ominous bat as the bell kicked off the match and chaos ensued. All the other contenders flew out of the ring to retrieve ladders, but the first bump of the night went to Asuka taking Alexa by surprise and slamming her into the ring. What followed was an exchange of blows between the rest of the wrestlers as they all landed harsh hits on one another as they struggled for control of the center of the ring.
Liv attempted the first ladder climb, but Tamina was wise to push her off before the briefcase could be retrieved. For most of the earlier parts of the match, Tamina maintained control of the ring until Asuka returned from the square circle and temporarily took her out of contention. Liv Morgan again attempted a quick climb up the ladder, exposing her strategy of laying in wait until another woman could set up a base to access the Money in the Bank contract.
Something to note was during the match was Alexa's strange control over the match, both in her ability to brush off Natalya's hits but also in entrancing Zelina Vega into moving away from the Money in the Bank contract. Career tip: should anyone want to quickly dispose of Alexa, bring Holy Water and perhaps a long wooden stake.
In her first offensive move of the night, Natalya attempted to climb the ladder to the contract but Vega attempted to ride her the entire way like a backpack. Despite having her hand on the Money in the Bank contract, Zelina couldn't unlatch the briefcase and was thwarted by Liv Morgan dragging both her and Natalya back to the floor.
Nikki Cross managed to take out the entire contending roster by sacrificing her body as a human cannonball, and nearly took advantage of being the only woman in the ring, until her former partner Alexa stepped in and tossed her out of the ring. Unluckily for Alexa, all the women tired of her supernatural prowess and banded together to bury their opponent under a pile of ladders. Once again, Liv Morgan tried to sneak attack the Money in the Bank contract, but defensive Tamina was quick to shake her off the ladder.
At the fever pitch of the match, 6 women set up on three ladders, all desperately grasping to the Money in the Bank contract.
While they focused their fists on each other, Nikki "ASH" Cross, essentially had her way to the contract paved in gilded rungs, and ascended the ladder untouched, and claimed the Money in the Bank briefcase as her own. Certainly, Cross was not expected to win the contract, with most assuming the win would either go to Liv Morgan or Alexa Bliss. Now that she has her contract in hand, only time will tell when the almost-super-hero will cash in on a title match. She has a year to decide.
There is no word on how Bliss is handling the loss after being expected to win, but we are assuming she is hanging upside down like a bat somewhere in a Texas basement.