Remembering the first ever 'Money in the Bank' Ladder Match

A star-studded match delivered the first and the best MITB Ladder Match ever
A star-studded bout delivered the first and the best MITB Ladder Match ever

Money in the Bank Ladder Match, since its inception in 2005, has been a great source entertainment. We’ve witnessed 20 MITB ladder matches so far, from the first ever match being held at Wrestlemania 25. Wrestlemania hosted four more MITB ladder matches after that [Wrestlemania 25-29] until WWE announced a separate Money in the Bank pay-per-view.

Despite being the first of its kind, MITB ladder match at Wrestlemania 21 is still considered the best one yet. Well, what else can you expect when six talented superstars get in the ring and give their best, right?.

It is very important to acknowledge the importance of this bout because it helped set the stage for many more of this matches in the future to follow. So, without any delay, let us analyze this classic.

Set-up for the match:

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The concept of MITB ladder match was introduced in a segment on RAW, a few weeks before Wrestlemania 21. Jericho pitched the idea to Eric Bischoff, who was a RAW General Manager back then. He instantly liked Jericho's idea.

So, the very next week, Bischoff called Jericho and four other superstars [Christian, Chris Benoit, Edge, and Shelton Benjamin] to his office and announced that all five of them would participate in a six-way ladder match at WrestleMania.

Edge, being a perfect heel, said he wasn't interested. But once Bischoff revealed the stipulation of the match and explained the benefits of the contract inside that briefcase, every Superstar including Edge was more than ready to be part of the match.

The sixth superstar to compete in MITB wasn't revealed right away. Bischoff booked Christian to face that mystery superstar, who was later revealed to be Kane.

Chris Jericho has been dubbed as the creator of ‘Money In the Bank’ Ladder matches since then, as it was his Idea. This wasn't a storyline angle. Jericho and Brian Gewirtz, who was a WWE creative at that time, came up with this idea and Vince McMahon approved it.

Watch the segment here:

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Participants in the first ever ‘Money in the Bank’ ladder match:

1. Chris Jericho

2. Christian (assisted by Tyson Tomko)

3. Chris Benoit

4. Edge

5. Kane

6. Shelton Benjamin (Intercontinental Champion at that time)

Outline of the match:

The first ever MITB ladder match had a runtime of 15mins 17secs. If we count the pre-match brawl before the bell rang, then we can consider it a 16-minute match. Not that long compared to other matches of its kind, right?

But despite it, or probably because of it, this ladder match had tons of high-spots and jaw-dropping moments from start to end.

The match could be summed up with these 12 highlights:

1. Before the match even started, all superstars targeted Kane outside the ring just as he entered. The brawl continued for less than a minute. Kane dismantled everyone and fight shifted to the ring.

2. Jericho kicked the ladder onto the face of Christian and the match officially begun with the bell.

3. Jericho jumped over the top rope to the outside of the ring to knock down Edge and Chris Benoit. Christian, Benjamin and Kane would then follow him by jumping over the top rope themselves onto the pile of their opponent bodies.

4. Jericho performed a drop-kick off the top rope onto the ladder held by Kane.

5. German Suplex by Chris Benoit on Jericho holding the ladder. The ladder landed outside the ring and Jericho landed in a corner.

6. Kane played the part of monster in the match pretty well. He destroyed Chris Benoit’s arm by slamming the ladder hard on it multiple times.

7. Edge and Christian sandwiched Kane by ramming both of their ladders onto his body.

8. Every Superstar except Kane got on top off the ladder and beat each other up. But everyone came crashing down sooner than later. The last ones to fall were Shelton Benjamin and Edge. Shelton Benjamin performed a perfect T-Bone suplex off the top of ladder on Edge here.

9. Shelton Benjamin continued to be great in this match. Just a few seconds after the T-Bone Suplex, he performed a Clothesline on Jericho off the top of the ladder. He did so by using a inclined ladder as a ramp to run upwards.

10. Kane and Jericho lost the balance and simultaneously fell off the ladder.

11. Benoit delivered an insane Diving headbutt off a ladder onto Kane. The stitches from his previous injury opened up after the violent collision with the floor and Kane.

12. Edge struck Chris Benoit hard on his back with a steel chair and then climbed up to get hold of the briefcase and became the first ever ‘Mr. Money in the Bank’.

Edge made history by becoming the first ever 'Mr. Money in the Bank'.
Edge made history by becoming the first ever 'Mr. Money in the Bank'.

The full match can be viewed here:

Final Words:

The debut MITB Ladder Match was definitely a classic with impeccable execution. The Superstars involved in it delivered more than expected. The match was critically acclaimed and every established critic had only good things to say about it.

This match definitely set the bar for future matches of its kind. No MITB match came even close to this thriller so far. Let’s hope it would be different this year.

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Edited by Porush Jain
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