Tonight at Money in the Bank, the WWE Universe saw the debut of a new superstar and the return of a familiar face.
“The First Lady of Professional Wrestling” Maria Kanellis made her WWE return – now as a member of the Smackdown brand – and she brought with her, her real-life husband Mike Bennett – or as he is now known, Mike Kanellis. I think JBL said what many of us were thinking “he took her name.”
There were reports that Mike and Maria were in St. Louis and would possibly make their Smackdown debut at the event. After they made their debut, some fans didn’t know what to make of the segment. From their promo, it looks like the couple are going to teach the WWE Universe about love – and by the tone of Maria’s voice, they’re going to be heels.
Although the segment left me with some questions, I liked the confidence in Maria’s voice. She’s no longer the bubbly backstage announcer or Santino’s girlfriend who later shared a kiss with Snoop Dogg. She’s now all business.
After Maria left the WWE in 2010, she appeared in different wrestling companies – big and small – over the years, most notably in Ring of Honor, New Japan Pro Wrestling and TNA. She held the TNA Knockouts championship and was a part of a match in NJPW pitting her, Mike and Matt Taven against the Bullet Club.
As for Mike, he’s put together a good body of work during the last 15 years, holding both the ROH and NJPW tag team titles and the TNA X Division belt. The two left TNA back in March.
Some folks who didn’t enjoy the Kanellis’ segment at Money in the Bank may have already made up their minds that the duo will suck, but I think we need to give them a chance. They know how to work as heels and they’ll generate quite a bit of heat by rubbing their love in fans’ faces. I think the Smackdown writers and the couple will come up with some entertaining stuff. I mean the writers – along with Tyler Breeze and Fandango – have turned the Fashion Police into a hit.
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