When Daniel Bryan became Mr. Money in the Bank in July 2011, many expected him to be the first holder of the opportunistic briefcase to cash in the contract and fail to capture the championship.
To be fair, Bryan had been spinning his wheels for months, though he teased challenging then-World Heavyweight champion Mark Henry on several occasions. He wasn't scheduled to compete at TLC 2011, making the chances of a cash-in all the more likely.
Sure enough, he emerged moments removed from Big Show's victory over Mark Henry in a grueling Chairs match. With his MITB briefcase in tow, Bryan wasted no time in taking advantage of the downed World's Largest Athlete and pinned him in seconds to clinch the prestigious prize.
The Baltimore crowd exploded with excitement for Bryan's big moment as he celebrated around ringside with the belt high above his head. Although Bryan was a babyface at the time, his repetitive "Yes!" chants laid the groundwork for his newfound catchphrase and also served as the catalyst for his gradual heel turn.
The WWE Universe became believers in Bryan at TLC 2011, proving that even the most prolific independent wrestler could attain superstardom in WWE. Had his MITB cash-in gone any other way, it's possible Bryan wouldn't have amounted to the level of success that he did in the years that followed.
Graham Mirmina, aka Graham "GSM" Matthews, is an Endicott College alumnus and aspiring journalist. Visit his website, Next Era Wrestling, and "like" his official Facebook page to continue the conversation on all things wrestling.
Source : https://bleacherreport.com/articles/2809886-wwe-tlc-2018-ranking-the-10-best-moments-in-ppv-history-before-10th-ever-show