This is the second year where a women’s Money in the Bank match will take place at WWE’s annual Money in the Bank pay-per-view, which takes place on June 17 in Chicago.

In last year’s Money in the Bank match, Carmella was the surprising winner thanks to some help from her friend James Ellsworth, who grabbed the briefcase and tossed it to her. They did the match again a few weeks later on Smackdown and Carmella won it once more. Carmella cashed in the coveted Money in the Bank contract on Charlotte on Smackdown on April 10 to become the Smackdown Women’s Champion.

There’s an interesting mix of talent in this match. There are six women that have won the Women’s Title on their respective show within the last two years. Those women are Charlotte Flair, Becky Lynch, and Naomi from Smackdown, along with Sasha Banks, Alexa Bliss, and Natalya (a Smackdown Women’s Champion last year) from Raw. There are only two women in this match that have not held a title on the main roster before: Ember Moon and Lana.

Since I picked Samoa Joe, a Smackdown wrestler, as the winner of the men’s Money in the Bank match, does that make a woman from Raw more likely in this match? I think so because WWE will likely want to have one MITB contract holder on each show. If you have both Money in the Bank contracts on one show, then it feels repetitive and it hurts the other show. I’m not saying the Smackdown women have no chance, but it just feels like it will be a woman on Raw that wins this match. Here are my rankings of who I think will win in order from least likely to most likely.

8. Lana (Smackdown)

Why She Should Win: “Lana is the best, Lana number one.” Catchy song, right? I wonder how long it took them to “write” those lyrics. Lana’s really popular because she’s one of the best looking women in WWE history. She’s a heel sometimes along with her husband Rusev, but in the last month, she has been booked like more of a face. Based on her popularity, the fans would love to see her win and in a match like this with no pinfalls, it would be easy to put her over in a fluky way.

Why She Shouldn’t Win: Lana has won one singles match on television in her WWE career and that happened two weeks ago on Smackdown when she beat Billie Kay to qualify for this match. The win was treated as an upset due to a distraction outside of the ring. Yes, Lana is popular, but she is not as experienced in the ring as the other women in this match and I find it hard to believe that WWE would put the Money in the Bank briefcase on her considering some of the other names in this match.

Summary: I like Lana a lot and I’m happy that she’s getting a chance to wrestle more if that’s what she wants to do. That doesn’t mean I think she will win Money in the Bank, though. Doing a spot where she’s close to winning is a good idea, but that’s really it.

7. Naomi (Smackdown)

Why She Should Win: Naomi has been lost in the shuffle a bit in 2018. She didn’t have much of a role to start the year, then she won the Women’s Battle Royal at WrestleMania, which felt so random. They did nothing with her after that. Naomi is popular, though, so it wouldn’t be a terrible idea for her to win this match.

Why She Shouldn’t Win: There are better choices in the match. It just doesn’t feel like a period where Naomi has a lot of momentum. She had her time as the featured woman on Smackdown and she has credibility because of that. Is she the best choice to win Money in the Bank, though? I don’t think so. The battle royal win didn’t help her at all.

Summary: I feel like she’s just in the match to put a former champion in there that’s popular and is going to get the crowd into it. Naomi is very athletic, so she could do some cool things jumping off a ladder. I don’t see her winning, though. It would seem like a stretch at this point.

6. Sasha Banks (Raw)

Why She Should Win: The last woman to qualify for this match has had an on again/off again storyline with her “best friend” Bayley for the past six months or so. It seems like WWE has forgotten about the story since it hasn’t been mentioned that much since WrestleMania. Prior to WrestleMania, they were fighting in locker rooms. I don’t understand why WWE stopped caring about that storyline and now Bayley isn’t even this match. Anyway, the reason I brought up Bayley is because Banks winning Money in the Bank could lead to a heel Banks rubbing it in Bayley’s face, which would help advance their feud and turn Banks heel, which she needs to do.

Why She Shouldn’t Win: It’s a common reason that I’ve mentioned a few times by saying that Banks doesn’t really need it. Banks has already been Raw Women’s Champion four times in the last two years even though those reigns were short.

Summary: I think if Banks won, the fans would buy it because she has a lot of credibility as one of the best women on the roster. It just doesn’t feel like the right time for her in terms of how she is booked on a regular basis. Then again, perhaps winning Money in the Bank will give her the best she needs to get back into the spotlight again.

5. Alexa Bliss (Raw)

Why She Should Win: Alexa Bliss has won a lot in the last two years on the main roster. She was the Smackdown Women’s Champion, then she was the long-term Raw Women’s Champion, and for her to get back to that level, winning Money in the Bank could help. We all know WWE likes putting the briefcase on a heel, so that fits Bliss as a crafty wrestler that could find a cheap way to cash in on rival Nia Jax, Ronda Rousey, or somebody else.

Why She Shouldn’t Win: Bliss has been pushed as much as any woman in WWE over the last two years except maybe Charlotte Flair. There’s a good chance she may get another push without needing to win Money in the Bank to get there.

Summary: Bliss is a talented wrestler that would be a good choice win because she would be entertaining in terms of her promos as “Miss Money in the Bank.” I feel like Bliss is in the match to add some star power. I don’t think she should win it.

4. Charlotte Flair (Smackdown)

Why She Should Win: It would be another accomplishment for the most dominant female performer in WWE in the last three years. Charlotte already has six Women’s Title reigns to her credit on the main roster and she seems to be the focus of the women’s division no matter what show she is on. Considering how much WWE management likes to put her over the other women, Charlotte is always a favorite to win any match she is in. Putting Money in the Bank on her would give it a lot of credibility due to her popularity.

Why She Shouldn’t Win: I think the “doesn’t need it” reason applies to her as much any woman in the company. Charlotte is always going to be in the title picture no matter what show she is on. She will continue to be the focus of the women’s division with or without the Money in the Bank briefcase.

Summary: I like her a lot as a performer and I get why WWE pushes her, but I would go in another direction. I think the more likely scenario is having somebody attack her to cost her the win. It could be somebody not in the match like the Iiconics duo of Peyton Royce and Billie Kay or perhaps the best friend duo of Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville. If that were to happen, it would be an excuse to not have Charlotte win while giving her a meaningful feud to do later in the year as well.

3. Ember Moon (Raw)

Why She Should Win: Ember is the best woman in this match that has yet to win a title on the main roster. That’s a good reason why she should win. I’m a huge fan of her athleticism, her finishing move (“The Eclipse” is a Stunner off the top rope), her selling and her offensive moves look great. Moon has so much potential to be a huge star, so putting the Money in the Bank contract in her hands could be the boost she needs.

Why She Shouldn’t Win: She is still too new on the main roster. Moon was called up to Raw right after WrestleMania and has yet to have a meaningful feud. She has had a few matches where she was put over some pretty big names like Alexa Bliss and Mickie James, but without a meaningful feud under her belt, it may seem premature to put her over in this match. You can argue that she just isn’t seen as a star at the level of the others in this match, so it may be too early for her to win.

Summary: I am all for a win for Moon because she’s an awesome performer with a great look and one of the best finishers in the company. The reason I’m hesitant to pick her is that I think WWE will feel like she’s not established enough. Perhaps in a year she may win this match, but not yet.

2. Becky Lynch (Smackdown)

Why She Should Win: If you were to ask me what woman on the entire roster was booked the worst over the last year, the two names I would mention first are Becky Lynch and Mickie James. There’s no Mickie in this match, so I’ll focus on Lynch by saying she could really use the win because of how she has been pushed aside pretty much since her best friend Charlotte Flair came to Smackdown a year ago. Lynch is a former Smackdown Women’s Champion, but it was nearly two years ago when she won that title and a lot of fans probably forget that. In terms of overall talent, Lynch is one of the best women in WWE. She could use the boost from winning Money in the Bank as much as any woman in this match.

Why She Shouldn’t Win: Lynch is already established as a big deal in WWE’s women’s division as a former champion. Another reason that comes to mind is if a guy from Smackdown wins the match like I expect (that would be Samoa Joe), then I think a woman from Raw should win this match. That’s what makes me hesitant to pick her to win even though I think she needs it.

Summary: It would be great if Lynch won because I feel like her career has been paused for the last year. By that, I mean she just isn’t progressing much. If she were to win Money in the Bank, it could get her going in the right direction again and maybe even set up a heel turn for her to give her something different to do.

1. Natalya (Raw)

Why She Should Win: Natalya’s friendship with Ronda Rousey, which WWE has pushed heavily in the last month, is the main reason I’m picking her. Natalya doesn’t “need” to win because she’s an established veteran that held Smackdown’s Women’s Title last year for a few months. Now that WWE is pushing the story of Natalya being friends with Rousey and Rousey is getting the Raw Women’s Title match at Money in the Bank (I think Rousey will win the title), it makes a lot of sense to put the contract on Natalya. That could set up a situation where Natalya cashes in MITB, beats Rousey (the first loss for Rousey in WWE) for the title and gets Natalya back into the heel role. They can say she sold out to Stephanie McMahon, who is Rousey’s main rival. It’s an easy story to tell that would keep Rousey busy for a few months at least.

Why She Shouldn’t Win: As a former champion, she doesn’t need it as much as somebody like Ember Moon. Natalya already has a lot of credibility as a veteran in WWE, so it’s easy to pass her over for somebody else in the match.

Summary: The story with Rousey and Natalya makes a lot of sense to me because WWE will need heels to feud with Rousey for the rest of the year. If the plan is for Rousey to face Charlotte at WrestleMania next year, which I believe to be true, then Rousey must have some meaningful storylines before that. Natalya is an experienced worker that can help Rousey improve in the ring while they wrestle for a few months.

Final Thoughts

This match is tough to predict right now. If Rousey wasn’t getting the Raw Women’s Title match at Money in the Bank, then I doubt I’d pick Natalya. Honestly, though, there’s no better choice, so I’ll go with Natalya for now unless I can think of somebody else that makes more sense in the storyline. If you bet and she wins, you may be able to Buy Bitcoin!

There are still two more weeks of Raw and Smackdown before Money in the Bank on June 17, so expect some twists and turns along the way.

About John Canton

John has been writing about WWE online since the late 1990s. He joined The Comeback/Awful Announcing team in 2015. Follow John Canton on Twitter @johnreport or email him at mrjohncanton@gmail.com with any comments or questions. He's written for UPROXX, WhatCulture, Bleacher Report, Layfield Report, Rajah and many other places. For more of his wrestling opinions, visit his website at TJRWrestling.net. Cheap pop!