The Miz quit Team Punk
Anarchy hit the U.K. before Raw even began, when Team Punk collapsed in on itself with a coup d’état writ small as The Miz aired his grievances to Paul Heyman in the locker room area. “What kind of team leader abandons his team?” The Awesome One seethed in response to what transpired last week on Raw. But even though Heyman attempted to placate the former WWE Champion by commanding he fall in line behind The Voice of the Voiceless.
Wade Barrett agreed to join Team Punk
Following The Miz’s resignation, Team Punk found itself one man short, so it fell to Paul Heyman to seek out a suitable replacement for The Awesome One at WWE’s fall classic. And who better to go to than the local boy himself, Wade Barrett?
Only the bare-knuckle champion wasn’t biting, and turned down the mad scientist’s offer before reconsidering on under one condition: “You owe me.” An elated Heyman agreed to Barrett’s terms before the rough-and-tumble fighter added one more caveat: “I want that in writing.”
Mr. McMahon suggested forced Vickie Guerrero to make a Triple Threat WWE Title Match at Survivor Series
McMahon next brought out Vickie Guerrero herself and did a little on-the-spot rejiggering of the Survivor Series main event. Why, The Chairman asked Vickie, should CM Punk be able to hide behind scores of other Superstars in a Traditional Survivor Series Elimination Tag Team Match without having to defend his title? Why not defend his title against two men who deserved an opportunity at the prize — the Superstar who got screwed at Hell in a Cell and the Superstar who fought Punk to a tie at Night of Champions?
Safe to say Vickie didn’t have much of a choice in the matter. With The Chairman breathing down her neck, the Managing Supervisor of Raw made it official with a strained smile on her face: CM Punk vs. John Cena vs. Ryback at Survivor Series for the WWE Championship
Dolph Ziggler was named a team captain at Survivor Series; Vickie Guerrero declared CM Punk & Dolph Ziggler would face John Cena & Ryback
Let’s call it a mixed couple of moments for Mr. Money in the Bank, who went from the highest of highs to the lowest of lows within the span of a few minutes at the hands of Vickie Guerrero and Mr. McMahon.
First came the good news: With Punk deposed as team captain at Survivor Series, Ziggler would be taking over The Second City Saint’s seat of power and head the newly christened “Team Ziggler” at WWE’s fall classic. This development brought out Punk, who railed against The Chairman’s temerity to rob him of his team and force him into a Triple Threat Match against Cena and Ryback.
While Punk cried conspiracy (Ziggler demurred), Vickie delivered the kicker of her meeting with The Chairman: Mr. McMahon decreed that later, Punk & Ziggler would unite against the first-time teaming John Cena & Ryback. Suffice it to say, Vickie was the only one who tried to see the upside of this situation.
John Cena & Ryback def. WWE Champion CM Punk & Dolph Ziggler
We’re not saying CM Punk has the gift of prophecy, but it’s fair to say his and Dolph Ziggler’s tag team contest against John Cena and Ryback was about as rough as they both expected it was going to be. Still, Punk wasn’t about to let such a match go by without getting his two cents in. The Voice of the Voiceless grabbed a microphone before the opening bell, lauding the length of his reign (351 days and counting) and promising to leave Survivor Series as the reigning WWE Champion, confirmed as The Best in the World.
The time for talk ended rather abruptly, though, when Cena and Ryback hit the ring for their first-ever (and potentially last-ever) teaming.
Cena and Punk started things off, resuming their long-running rivalry with a dead-even sequence of mat wrestling before Punk tagged in Ziggler, whose technical acumen wasn’t enough to keep the Cenation leader at bay. But after a brief return by Punk to soften Cena up, Ziggler found his groove. Mr. Money in the Bank re-entered the match with gusto, unleashing a seemingly endless sequence of elbow drops on Cena’s prone torso. The attack opened the door for Punk to tag back in and pummel Cena with a set of kicks and knees that brought The Second City Saint within a hair’s breadth of triumph. Cena quickly turned the tables with a last-ditch Attitude Adjustment on Punk, but a quick tag to Ziggler prevented the Cenation leader from summoning Ryback. The momentum, however tentatively, stayed in the corner of Punk & The Showoff.
Punk kept the attack going, trapping Cena in a triangle hold and alternating with Ziggler in an attempt to isolate the 10-time WWE Champion from his monstrous partner. Still, they don’t call Ziggler The Showoff for nothing, as his failed attempt at an overly flashy dropkick forced him to tag in Punk just as Cena reached Ryback and brought the beast into the match.
The Second City Saint did not last long after Ryback entered the fray, as the beast pulverized both Punk and Ziggler before pinning The WWE Champion with Shell Shocked. Once Punk writhed out of the ring, though, the WWE Universe was treated to a strange, ominous scene. As Cena entered the ring, ostensibly to celebrate, Ryback locked eyes with the Cenation leader and began to bellow “FEED ME MORE!!!” with the WWE Universe chanting in unison.
The message, it seemed, was clear: There’s room on Ryback’s menu for more than just CM Punk.