FINALLY, the Hyphen has come back…whatever.
Before I finish off this long overdue article, let me respond to some of the comments from part 1.
I don’t think Punk should have had the ball in the way he got it. He got the ball by shooting on the company and working angles on the Internet. It was brilliant… but you shouldn’t pull back the curtain. Its like if on Lost… one of the characters brought up how one of the actresses slept with the director to get a job and said how ABC is ruining television.He should have gotten the title by being the best… not lifting the curtain.
Anyway… at the end of all of it, CM Punk was just a red carpet for HHH and Nash to stroll in on.
They could have done a lot more with Punk if they just “let him leave.” He could have come back at Royal Rumble… won the match and said he’s gonna unify the title as Wrestlemania… because he never lost the WWE title so since he can’t go for his own title he’ll go for the heavyweight strap.
HHH could have still come back and taken over the company when he did… but just not use CM Punk to wipe his feet on.
Maybe it was the WWE’s typical 3 month push. Like Miz & R-Truth received earlier this year.
I’m not mad at the way Punk used his shoot to get the title. As much as I loved the WWE and watched it consistently, Punk going off on everyone lit a fire that I hadn’t seen in a very long time. By now, we all see that this angle was planned but I’ve seen several interviews with members of the WWE that say Punk is rarely told what to say. Chances are, he was truly shooting from the hip. While it does pull back the curtain, I feel a certain need for realism is needed in wrestling today. It’s not the days of face vs. heel anymore. It’s important to talk about real life contracts and to have wrestlers mention when other wrestlers aren’t getting their due (like Cena has done for Zack Ryder). Without the curtain being raised a bit, you get a truly stale product that UFC (yuck) will eventually eclipse.
And he did win the title by being the best. He beat Del Rio cleanly to become the number 1 contender for Cena’s title before his shoot/work rant. He beat Cena cleanly to win the belt. He thought he had beaten Cena cleanly at SummerSlam. All his rant did was change him from a heel to a ‘tweener and ultimately to a face by the time he won the belt from Cena.
I agree with Triple H and Nash riding the CM Punk train. I’ll discuss that more in a little bit.
I also agree with having Punk stay gone longer and I think that was the original plan. But after his “Best In The World” t-shirt started selling crazy and especially after how well Cena helped him get over at Money In The Bank, it would’ve been bad business to keep him away. Especially until January or April. All those months go by without Punk being around and nobody gives a shit by the time he shows again. WWE struck while the iron was hot and were right to do it.
And as much as I’d like to see it, an Undisputed Title reign isn’t going to happen for a while longer. Not while WWE has two shows on cable TV a week. I can only hope the Spinner Belt will be put to rest soon.
And I’ll use your 3 month push comment to get into the meat of the article. Punk’s 3 month push from June to August was the most exciting thing to happen to WWE since the night The Rock announced he was the host of Wrestlemania XXVII. For awhile now, Cena and Randy Orton had run as the number 1 and number 2 superstars of the WWE but once Punk’s angle hit, Cena had legitimate competition.
I ended last article asking why Punk was booked into a feud with the returning HHH/Kevin Nash. I think my time away from this topic has actually helped me figure it out as well:
WWE had no choice.
Sure, it absolutely sucked for the new Punk fans (me) who wanted to see ol’ Phil run ripshod over any and everyone. But if they had left the Title on Punk or even kept him in the title picture, his popularity may have faded quickly. By putting him in a feud with a veteran heel (Nash then HHH) it allowed Punk to still maintain his baby face all while getting to be a complete dick to Hunter and Nash (and Stephanie McMahon). If Punk stayed in the Cena feud, he risked becoming a heel again just because of Cena’s overwhelming popularity. And then he would just become another Miz or Sheamus by having a brief title run but the power of Cena would eventually rule the day. WWE didn’t want that and neither did Punk.
Thus, you get the Nash/HHH feud. I still maintain that it featured some of the most dreadful writing of 2011. Apparently Nash had stolen Hunter’s phone and texted himself and that’s why he cost CM Punk his belt at SummerSlam. A match was set between Nash and Punk for Night of Champions but HHH replaced Nash when he got sick of Punk talking about Stephanie (Nash wasn’t medically cleared to wrestle in reality). Nash still got involved at NoC by attacking Punk and was in turn attacked by Triple H. The interference was enough to cost Punk the win.
Phil then reentered the WWE Title picture by competing against Cena and Del Rio at Hell In A Cell but lost when ADR used a steel pipe to gain victory. The Miz & R-Truth then came out of nowhere to attack all three wrestlers before Triple H and the rest of the locker room came out to end the chaos.
Punk and Hunter then put their differences aside to face Awesome Truth at Vengeance. Nash again interfered but attacked Triple H this time which cost the duo the tag team win.
Now during this time is when I wrote first part of this article. I was really pissed that the WWE wasn’t using CM Punk the way I saw fit. But I didn’t even realize that by entering this feud, not only did Punk get ring time with some future WWE Hall of Famers, he also didn’t lose any of his summer momentum. Even though I thought Punk was stuck in a shit storyline, he emerged from it unscathed. And he managed another WWE Title shot in between it all.
In current storylines, Punk is in a feud with ADR and Interim Raw General Manager John Laurinaitis. After forcing Del Rio to grant him a WWE Title rematch from his SummerSlam loss, Punk went on to Survivor Series and won his second WWE Title in what I thought was the match of the night.
Punk successfully defended his title against Del Rio on the November 28th edition of Raw and has been booked to face The Miz (who is finally getting back to his best heel in the WWE business) and ADR on December 18th at the 2011 Tables, Ladders, and Chairs PPV. With only one more week to build before the PPV, I expect the three to end up in some kind of tag team match that will involve Cena on the December 12th Raw.
I personally would like to see Punk carry the belt still after TLC but more than likely Miz will win and that will be his new feud through the Royal Rumble and Elimination Chamber PPVs. Punk could potentially carry the belt to Wrestlemania XXVIII but even I’m not sure who he’ll face. The winner of the Rumble will probably want to challenge for the WWE Title since Daniel Bryan has said he will cash in his Money in the Bank briefcase at WM 28 (though it’s been teased lately that he’ll use it sooner). Bryan will more than likely face whomever the World Heavyweight Title is on (I’m betting against Mark Henry) at that time.
Predictions? Chris Jericho returns at the Royal Rumble, wins and sets up an epic Punk/Jericho match at WM 28. Punk has some history with Jericho dating back to his first World Ttitle reign in 2008. I’d enjoy that match…and I will live from Miami. Just saying.
Or maybe Punk will be put out of action after the TLC PPV. Perhaps he’ll get a well deserved month off and return in time for the Rumble. Maybe, he’ll win the battle royal and get to challenge whoever is holding the WWE Title by then.
But I really hope for Jericho.
So I retract my previous comments. WWE and Phil did not drop the ball. They just proved that sometimes the storylines you hate are actually better for business in the long run. Or maybe I’m just happy the belt’s on Punk. If it wasn’t this article may have been a lot different.
The world may never know.