The Miz is taking his awesome brand of arrogance to WWE Money in the Bank on Sunday, June 17. Miz is booked along with seven other Superstars in the Men’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match. If The Miz climbs the ladder and pulls down the briefcase, he gets an opportunity at the WWE Championship. He’s done it before. But will he do it again?
The Miz has been on fire in recent months and many would argue that fire has been raging over the past year. Indeed every time he’s on camera, he owns it. Every time he’s on the mic, he owns everyone else. The Miz has been firing on all cylinders for quite some time now and it’s only logical he has a shot on June 17.
WWE books its best hands in main event matches and this one is no different. The company loves to let the talent show off on the worldwide stage and that’s especially true here. The better the competition, the more likely the match will get over. More importantly, the match will actually mean something.
Fans need a reason to invest in what’s going on between the ropes. They must feet connected to the match and everyone in it. Otherwise, there’s just no reason for them to care. There are some top level guys in this ladder match and chief among them is The Miz.
Watch The Miz vs. Jeff Hady on SmackDown Live:
Miz is so good at what he does that he’s automatic at this point. It doesn’t appear as if he’s even trying anymore. He is such a natural and so adept at getting heat that it’s indeed second nature to him. Every time he opens his mouth, he gives fans a reason to hate him. Of course he is only doing his job and some would say that no one is better at that job than he is.
Is The Miz WWE’s top heel? He is cocky, he’s smarmy and he’s egotistical. He’s a self-serving blowhard that cares only about himself and anyone that’s in his way is in the wrong place. Miz doesn’t really let his fists do the talking however; most of the time Miz just cannot shut up.
But therein lays his charm. Miz is good at stirring things up and making the crowd wish he would just go away. He talks down to them as if he’s better than everyone else and he is actually very convincing when he does it. The Miz has the uncanny ability to make fans angry yet also envious at the same time.
Miz is living the dream and everyone knows it. He’s working in the world’s biggest pro wrestling company. He’s a contender to nearly every top championship in that company. The Miz has a beautiful woman by his side and he always projects an image of excellence. His overall ability as a WWE Superstar puts him at the top because he is so good. There are very few guys that can outmatch Miz in any aspect of his game.
The most remarkable thing about The Miz is just how far he is in his WWE career. At one time, he was nothing more than a pretender. He was dismissed as a talent that couldn’t draw and couldn’t connect. Miz was nothing more than a heel trying much to hard too be relevant. But he wasn’t relevant. In fact most fans didn’t care about him at all.
Watch Miz vs. Big E on SmackDown Live:
But as the years have gone by, Miz continued to improve. His ring psychology is better than it’s ever been and he looks more like a world championship caliber performer than at any other time in his career. The Miz has focus and is sharper than ever before. None of this has been lost on the fans, who regularly applaud his efforts.
So if fans recognize the progress he’s made and respect him for it, then why not move forward with him as the next Mister Money in the Bank? It’s obvious he could do it and pull it off perhaps better than any other man in the match. After all no one is better at self-promotion than The Miz and no one can make the best of that spotlight quite like he can.
Miz knows what it is to take full advantage of an opportunity WWE gives him. That was how he improved to begin with and that’s also how he became the talent that so many fans appreciate today. If Miz wins the briefcase, cashes in on AJ Styles and becomes the new WWE champion, no one would likely question it. The majority of fans already believe he is a world title contender. They have already accepted him.
But what may not be as easily accepted is his character in the ring. Yes he is a top tier talent and yes he is one of the best hands in the company right now. However accepting The Miz as a full-time main event star with the world title may be a bit tougher than anyone realizes.
The problem here is legitimacy. If Miz does become WWE champion as a result of winning Money in the Bank, there’s very little reason to believe he will change his game. He’s still going to cheat. He’s still going to take every short-cut he can and he will still make excuses when he falls short. There’s nothing wrong with this of course and everyone inside WWE surely believes that kind of booking is perfect for him.
Watch Miz and The Bar vs. The New Day:
But this matters to the fans. This is an era in which simply just being a villainous heel is not enough anymore. Fans expect every Superstar to pull his own weight in the ring and that includes antagonists as well. Guys like Seth Rollins and even AJ Styles himself were also cocky, conniving and cowardly as heel champions. But they were also legitimately tough and extremely capable of beating anyone on any given night.
Does that describe The Miz? While there’s certainly no issue with Miz taking the low road, there is an issue if he takes it too often. Kevin Owens’ run as Universal champion was not exactly one for the ages for this very reason. He fought hard and worked good matches, but there was always a feeling among the WWE faithful that he couldn’t get the job done alone.
It’s okay to cheat and fans expect the heels to do just that. But when those heels don’t convincingly display enough ring prowess to occasionally gain some wins, then fans tend to turn their backs. So if The Miz moves up on SmackDown Live and becomes the next Mister Money in the Bank, then there should be a reexamination of his character and his mission between the ropes.
The fact is Miz might be the best choice to win on June 17. His rivalry with Daniel Bryan could finally be fully realized and babyfaces like Jeff Hardy could step up to challenge for the title. Miz has indeed done more than enough to get a shot at the top. Money in the Bank could be the night when that shot is fired.
Tom Clark can regularly be seen on Wrestling Rumors. His podcast, Tom Clark’s Main Event, is available on iTunes, Google Play, iHeart Radio, Amazon Android, Windows Phone and online at boinkstudios.com