WWE Champion CM Punk announced who his opponent would be at Hell in a Cell
His week was up, and the hour of decision fell upon WWE Champion CM Punk this Monday on Raw. And when the proverbial clock struck midnight on Punk’s deadline to select his opponent at Hell in a Cell, who did The Second City Saint designate as the next challenger for his WWE Title? The answer, as it turned out, was …
Well, at least not yet.
The Voice of the Voiceless did not deign to name his next opponent at the appointed time, instead choosing to bask in his beatdown and humiliation of Mr. McMahon the previous week. “I slapped Vince McMahon in the face!” Punk grinned with Paul Heyman at his side. “I think it’s safe to say that you will never see Vince McMahon compete in this very ring ever again,” Punk said, “and for that, you can thank me” (needless to say, longtime McMahon rival Heyman did not hesitate to do so). Moving on to the business at hand, Punk continued to expound upon the perceived smear campaign against his reputation and began to contemplate the choice of “the devil I know” vs. “the devil I don’t.”
On the one hand, Punk explained, was the monstrous Ryback, who to him has proven little more than an interloper who inserted himself into a conflict he had no part in, and on the other hand, was Cena, who has fallen to Punk several times before. So, with his options laid out, Punk turned to the covered easel erected in the ring and prepared to unveil his opponent, when the “disrespectful” roars of the crowd prompted him to “go back to the drawing board” and take a little more time with his decision.
Would this decision sit well with the powers that be?
As it turned out, there was no chance in hell, because no sooner had Punk dismissed the notion of unveiling his opponent than Mr. McMahon strutted out to the stage and reiterated to the champion that his time had run out. “You blew it,” McMahon sneered, proclaiming that he would be selecting the new No. 1 contender. “Your fate at Hell in a Cell is in my hands,” The Chairman grinned. “Respect that.”
Decision time, take two: with the fate of WWE Champion CM Punk left to the discretion of Mr. McMahon, which route did The Chairman choose for his champion in the place where rivalries are settled once and for all?
Well, the answer, as turned out, was not what anyone could have expected. But we’re getting to that.
The contract signing for Hell in a Cell started off somewhat typically, with champion and challenger(s) staring daggers at each other over while The Chairman began to address the assembled Superstars, but Punk cut The Boss off before he could even begin, putting pen to the paper and declaring that what would be would be. “I will do to [Cena or Ryback] what I did to you. I will break them,” Punk vowed with vigor. This brought out the fire in Cena, who demeaned Punk yet again before making a decision that left all parties speechless: Cena demurred.
Because, while Ryback may or may not care about the WWE Title, what Big Hungry does care about is “kicking ass.” And more than anything, Cena’s message to Punk was: “You need to get your ass kicked.” It was then that Cena painted a picture of Punk’s future, and it was a highly unpleasant one filled with unrest and terror as the WWE Champion spent his waking days and sleepless nights haunted by three simple words: “Feed Me More.”
With the ramifications of the night becoming clear, Punk looked on in horror as Cena led the WWE Universe in Ryback’s chant and Big Hungry put his name to the legalese, solidifying the match and his new status as the No. 1 contender to the WWE Championship. Punk’s attempt to intimidate the big man proved fruitless at best, as Ryback unceremoniously pounded Punk’s head against the table and Shell Shocked him for good measure, while Cena’s prediction showed early signs of coming true: as Raw faded to black and the main event of Hell in a Cell was set, the WWE Champion found himself prone on the mat and surrounded on all sides by those three magic words.