Welcome to Wrestling Re-Booking, where I take some popular storylines and put my own spin on them, because it’s always fun to wonder what if.
Our first edition is a two-part journey due to the complexity of this angle. Let’s take a look back at 2011.
CM Punk was on his way out, but first, he’d vie for the WWE title against John Cena at Money In The Bank. He threatened to leave with the title if he won and take it elsewhere. Cena’s job was also on the line.
The match resulted in Punk defeating Cena with the Go To Sleep for the pin fall. Punk leaves and returns a month later. During that span, Cena takes the interim title from Rey Mysterio. Cena and Punk fight again at SummerSlam, with Punk beating Cena but losing to Alberto Del Rio. This was in large part to Kevin Nash.
Del Rio traded the WWE title with Cena until Survivor Series when Punk got back his championship and went on to hold it for a year.
It felt sluggish, with Punk floundering in a spot after excelling in his storyline only to o the job to Triple H and the combined might of The Miz & R-Truth in back-to-back events. Considering what might have been, here’s what I would’ve done to book the WWE Title with CM Punk as champion.
Keep Money In The Bank the same. Have Del Rio come out and fail to cash in, and Punk escapes over the barricades kissing Vince McMahon goodbye.
Then have Punk not appear on WWE TV for a month. Miss SummerSlam and let WWE salvage their time with their WWE Championship on the air. Keep the tournament the same with Mysterio winning. Also keep Cena defeating Mysterio but here’s the twist. No one appears on the ramp.
Instead of Cena and Punk battling again, it’s the rematch between Mysterio and Cena at SummerSlam. Two faces should turn the tide for WWE momentarily. No Triple H as guest referee. Cena retains against Mysterio. Then, keep Del Rio’s cash in only on Cena.
Meanwhile, Punk does what he said he would do. It was a great moment when he put over Gregory Iron at AAW Wrestling. Also keep Punk’s San Diego Comic-Con appearance as well.
Maybe have him show up at a few other promotions. The most prominent (due to logistics) would be Ring of Honor and Pro Wrestling Guerilla, two organizations that Punk has ties with.
Back at WWE, Del Rio faces Cena the next night on Raw and defends the title thanks to inadvertent help from Mysterio. Del Rio leaves only to be ambushed by a masked man with a briefcase. The man opens the briefcase revealing the WWE title and removes the mask, which is none other than CM Punk.
The following week, Punk cuts his promo how he’s the real champion and how nothing has really changed since he left. Triple H interrupts him and states how you’re not the real champ because you left (pretty much the same spiel he gave at SDCC). He challenges Punk at Night of Champions, stating if Punk loses, he must give up his title. But if Punk wins, he gets his spot back with title intact. Punk goes over Triple H, while Del Rio successfully defends over Mysterio and Cena.
This leaves us with two WWE Champions on one show. Triple H then books a fatal-four way match between Punk, Cena, Del Rio and Mysterio at WWE Vengeance. As the dust settles, it’s Punk who beats Mysterio with the Go To Sleep for the pin fall. Punk unites the titles and undisputedly becomes champion.
This eliminates Mysterio from the title picture. Continue with the Triple Threat Hell In A Cell bout, this time with Punk on top defeating Cena instead of taking the loss.
That’s when you keep Survivor Series the same. Punk goes over on Del Rio at Madison Square Garden. And they say the rest is history…but is it really?
Instead of the title playing hot potato with four guys, keeping all four in the picture for a story within autumn makes more sense. Plus, adding exposure to other wrestling companies only helps the art grow. Maybe it would’ve reached the heights it has today with these plans.
The key thing is that Punk doesn’t lose momentum and creates an intriguing storyline to keep the fans interested. How it ends is something you’ll have to wait for in Part 2.
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