DIGITAL PICTURES — SCREEN CAPTURES
WWE COO Triple H def. CM Punk (No Disqualification Match)
Superstars, Divas, consultants and all others can stow their résumés for the time being. At Night of Champions, WWE Chief Operating Officer Triple H trounced the ambitions of would-be successors as he defeated CM Punk to maintain his spot as top executive in WWE, thanks to the man terminated by The Game weeks ago: Kevin Nash. (PHOTOS)
But it’s really not that easy.
Like the rest of the WWE Universe, the anti-establishment “Voice of the Voiceless” may be speechless right now after falling to said establishment in a No Disqualification Match that ultimately favored The Game by making Nash’s Jackknife Powerbomb (and unexpected attack on Triple H, himself) plainly legal. Given the rules of the match, it was all fair game, including the disruption of The Miz & R-Truth, whose attack on the combatants opened the flood gates to sheer chaos. (EXCLUSIVE POST-SHOW VIDEO)
The collective of conspiracy theorists were already likely to face great consequences after a losing effort to WWE Tag Team Champions Air Boom and subsequent heinous assault on a WWE official at the start of the evening. Citing a supposed plot by the COO, the duo struck, most aggressively against both Triple H and his foe. Satisfied with their work, the pair then laid a prone Punk on top of a razed Game, but when the pinfall failed, Miz and Truth once again physically assaulted a WWE referee – this time Scott Armstrong, whose single punch to The Awesome One’s jaw signaled the next layer of anarchy.
The Straight Edge Superstar and Cerebral Assassin rallied back, forcing the intruders out and simultaneously crushing the official beneath Truth’s Punk-flung body. Enter WWE EVP John Laurinaitis and a second referee. Then, amid the officiating peril and after Laurinaitis’ rapid cell phone texting at ringside, Big Daddy Cool parted the crowd and entered the ring for a crushing barrage to, shockingly, his former friend as well as his tattooed opponent.
With the upstart Voice of the Voiceless downed, the COO regained his footing, retaliated against his 7-foot friend with a sledgehammer to the face and entered the ring to deliver a joust-ending Pedigree – the second of the match – to CM Punk for the pin.
The Cerebral Assassin, who has historically vied for or defended WWE’s most prestigious titles at Night of Champions, clung to the precious job title of WWE COO in Buffalo. But it wasn’t without a veil of controversy that’s become prevalent since Triple H took charge and Nash emerged to establish a stark conflict of interest for his longtime Kliq cohort.
Whether or not by the most desirable means, The Game effectively (at least temporarily) silenced The Straight Edge Superstar in the First Niagara Center. Months spent enduring the incisive comments of CM Punk about Triple H’s integrity, authority and wife all culminated in a fierce battle with a controversial outcome … yet again.
Unlike the good humor of his WWE ice cream bar T-shirt, a deadly serious CM Punk and his 13-time World Champion enemy engaged in one of the most personal clashes in either man’s career. Their ferocity was evident from the match’s start as The Second City Saint committed the rare sacrilege of interrupting The Game’s intense, water spewing ring entry; it continued for many minutes spent crashing into walls, stairs, tables and set structures arena-wide; it ended in pandemonium.
In the fallout of all the disorder, the WWE Universe awaits answers about the nature of Nash’s involvement and what could very well have been a masterfully conspired attack. Will those answers surface if Punk wields his infamous “pipe bomb” just 24 hours after Night of Champions on WWE Raw SuperShow?