Thursday, March 8, 2012

Wrestlemania: CM Punk

The champ (WWE)
By Chad Smart
@chadsmart on Twitter

Even though he’s the current WWE Champion, depending on whom you ask, CM Punk’s match with Chris Jericho is probably the second or third important match on the card behind John Cena/Rock and Undertaker/Triple H. While his championship match may be overshadowed, I doubt CM Punk will loose much sleep over it.

As mentioned in the Wrestlemania history of John Cena, CM Punk technically made his Wrestlemania debut at Wrestlemania 22 when he portrayed one of the Chicago Gangsters riding on the side of a 1920’s model car during John Cena’s entrance. In terms of actual in ring competition, CM Punk’s debut came the following year at Wrestlemania 23.

$ Time (WWE)
Detroit saw CM Punk make his first of three consecutive appearances in the Money in the Bank Wrestlemania ladder match. Joey Styles mentioned Punk was the first ECW wrestler to appear on Wrestlemania. You kind of have to fudge the meaning of that sentence to have it be accurate, but I guess it’s something Punk can claim if he wishes. CM Punk didn’t do much of note in the match, which was eventually won by Mr. Kennedy.

The next two years though, CM Punk would go on to unhook the briefcase hanging above the ring. In the Wrestlemania 24 edition of the show, Punk’s Wrestlemania 28 opponent, Chris Jericho was also in the match. I need to re-watch this as I’m curious home much interaction the two men had in the match. As for the Wrestlemania 25 match, the only real moment that I can recall is Kofi Kingston using the two halves of a broken ladder as stilts. Even if he didn’t have the show stealing moment, CM Punk still managed to win both matches and go on to successfully cash in the briefcases for World Title gold.

Wrestlemania 26 finally offered CM Punk the chance to showcase his skills in a one on one matchup. For months, Punk had been tormenting Rey Mysterio, even interrupting a birthday celebration for Rey’s daughter. Although Punk had his Straight Edge Society members Luke Gallows and Serena at ringside, he couldn’t avoid the 619 and wound up with his shoulders on the mat for the three count.

RKO wins
A year later Punk went up against another tattooed opponent, Randy Orton. This time there was neither the Straight Edge Society nor any member of the Nexus there to watch Punk’s back. While it was mostly a back and forth match where Punk focused his attack on Orton’s injured leg, in the end, Orton pulled out an RKO as Punk tried for a cross body from the top rope for the victory.

CM Punk’s solo match record at Wrestlemania isn’t one to brag about yet. Will his unlucky streak continue when he puts the WWE title on the line against Chris Jericho? Or will Punk live up to the “best in the world” moniker?

Who do you think is the true “best in the world” Share your thoughts on Facebook.

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