CM Punk proclaimed himself “God” to the WWE Universe
Even without the WWE Championship, CM Punk’s crassness knows no bounds. The deposed former champion took to the ring only hours before a potentially career-altering match against John Cena to proclaim his disdain for the WWE Universe. And even for a man who relishes the opportunity to put himself on a pedestal, Punk’s legend seems to have grown to unprecedented heights in his own mind. “Tonight is about what is more important than The Rock. Tonight is about what is more important than WrestleMania,” Punk said. “Tonight is about me.
“I am not just a Superstar,” Punk continued, fire and brimstone erupting from his microphone as his homily reached a fever pitch. “I am an icon that walks among Superstars. … You are in the presence of greatness on two feet. I am not just a human being. I am immortal … a legend. An icon.
“And in this world that you all inhabit, I … I am God.”
John Cena def. CM Punk to decide the No. 1 contender to the WWE Championship
Perhaps calling himself “God” was excessive self-praise for CM Punk. Perhaps The Straight Edge Superstar was resting too much on his laurels, and perhaps Monday in the American Airlines Center simply wasn’t his night, because John Cena managed to reverse nearly two years of bad luck against the former WWE Champion and pin CM Punk to punch his ticket to the WrestleMania main event in a bout 10-time WWE Champion had appropriately dubbed the “Thunderdome in Dallas.” The Cenation leader and the onetime “Voice of the Voiceless” have a rivalry that stretches back years, and they brought every moment of that mounting tension to a grueling, nearly half-hour-long contest with the biggest opportunity in sports-entertainment hanging in the balance.
Despite his defeat, let it never be said that Punk laid down and died against the 10-time WWE Champion. The Straight Edge Superstar battled his archrival like his life depended on it, using every hold, strike and aerial maneuver in his extensive arsenal to keep Cena at bay. Cena answered in kind time and again, employing an array of his own technical holds to gain the early momentum, but Punk would not be so easily quelled. The Straight Edge Superstar surged back by raining elbows on the back of Cena’s neck and applying a series of submission holds to sap the strength out of him.
The strategy seemed to work when Punk thwarted Cena’s signature shoulder blocks and seemingly regained control for good, but Cena surged back and the two took their fight to the ground, taking each other to the brink by trading their signature submission holds. The back-and-forth nearly sapped the strength from both men but Cena appeared to have the advantage when he plastered Punk with a powerbomb and a top-rope leg drop, but he couldn’t seal Punk up even with whiplash-inducing Attitude Adjustment out of nowhere, nor could Punk with a pair of Go to Sleeps that left the Cenation leader crumpled on the mat.
Punk’s frustration ultimately got the better of him, as The Straight Edge Superstar attempted a series of covers on Cena in a state of disbelief, wasting time that otherwise might have been spent further weakening the Cenation leader. Looking for one final maneuver to put the match away, Punk went up for the flying elbow but Cena dodged the attempt and sent Punk spinning with a hurricanrana. One Attitude Adjustment later to the stunned challenger and CM Punk was on his back, with John Cena headed to WrestleMania once more. And for the first time in a long, long time, CM Punk did not have a single thing to say.
LAFAYETTE, La. — We’ll say this much for CM Punk: He does not go down without a fight. Like the proverbial bad penny, The Straight Edge Superstar just keeps coming back when the WWE Universe thinks he’s gone for good. This week, his machinations have ostensibly inserted him back into the WWE Title picture he was removed from just 24 hours earlier when The Rock retained his championship at Elimination Chamber. Punk’s latest scheme, however, was not targeted at The People’s Champion but instead at his old foil John Cena.
Cena, who declared his intention to challenge for the WWE Title at WrestleMania 29 several weeks prior, had barely begun to address the Cajundome crowd when Punk cut the Cenation leader off and attempted to provoke the proverbial bear, recalling Cena’s defeat at Rock’s hands at WrestleMania XXVIII and his numerous losses to Punk himself.
NEW ORLEANS — Despite CM Punk’s best efforts to exploit an unusual set of rules that worked to the his benefit, The Rock would not be denied his goal of trumping The Second City Saint at Elimination Chamber and returning to the main event of WrestleMania as WWE Champion for a match against John Cena.
Enraged over Punk’s robbery of the physical WWE Title last Monday on Raw, the captain of Team Bring It had to be careful not to lose his temper and get disqualified, thanks to perilous match stipulation added last week in a last-ditch power play architected by Punk adviser Paul Heyman. The added stipulation removed the normal champion’s advantage: Per the orders of WWE Chairman Mr. McMahon, if The Rock were to lose by disqualification or count-out, the WWE Title would go back to Punk.
WWE Champion The Rock and CM Punk engaged in a war of words
After having his WWE Title stolen from him on Raw, The Great One re-emerged on SmackDown, informing his Straight Edge No. 1 contender that his act of thievery will only increase the severity of the beating his challenger will receive on Sunday, one that will “haunt [Punk] the rest of his life.”
Punk then appeared on the TitanTron — with the WWE Title still in his possession. Again insisting that the illustrious gold actually belonged to him, he reminded The Most Electrifying Man in All of Entertainment just how much the odds are stacked against him this Sunday. For if The Rock gets counted out or disqualified, he will lose the championship.
Completely discarding his usual pageantry in a way that truly captured the severity of that new stipulation in the impending title conflict this Sunday, The People’s Champion made it clear to Punk that it was not going to happen.
CM Punk talked Paul Heyman out of resigning from WWE
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Perhaps it’s only fitting that, as Raw rolled into the Music City, the evening began with the metaphorical funeral dirge of one Paul Heyman, who came into Nashville, Tenn., with no less an intention than to announce his resignation. His reputation in shambles and his career in jeopardy following the events of the past two weeks, the former ECW mastermind took to the ring to say his final goodbyes. But more importantly, Heyman gave a heartfelt explanation as to why he would be leaving WWE: He would be leaving for the sake of his friend, CM Punk.