WWE Money in the Bank 2012: Making the Case for John Cena vs. CM Punk III

Rob ManiseroCorrespondent IJune 22, 2012

It's hard to believe that the groundbreaking promo of CM Punk took place almost a year ago.

June 27 was the date, and after John Cena lost a tables match thanks to a distraction from the Straight-Edge Superstar, Punk proceeded to take a seat on the stage and run through all the reasons he was leaving the company.

His heated promo kicked off the "Reality Era" and set the stage for some intriguing storylines over the summer and fall of 2011. While things went off the rails a bit down the line, the original feud between Punk and Cena was pure gold.

Their match at last year's Money in the Bank PPV can be considered one of the best in this century, and their follow-up at SummerSlam was just a notch below. After that, all of the dilution began, and the two men ended their one-on-one rivalry.

Fast-forward one year, and we are just three weeks away from the 2012 version of Money in the Bank. With Cena taking care of the Big Show and Punk prevailing in a tough triple-threat match, it might just be the time for the two men to go at it one more time.

In most great rivalries, stipulations will be added for matches that are later on in the feud. Shawn Michaels and Chris Jericho started off one-on-one and ended with an Unsanctioned contest and a ladder match. The Undertaker's last two opponents, Shawn Michaels and Triple H, each had added stipulations in their second attempts at ending the streak.

So here is my proposal.

For the first two years of the PPV's existence, there have been two Money in the Bank ladder matches. One briefcase was relegated to SmackDown, while the other was for the Raw brand only. But, in today's company, who really cares about brands anyway?

This year there should only be one MITB Ladder match, which would once again put both champions on alert for the entire year. The match can be filled with upcoming superstars and favorites, such as Dolph Ziggler and Cody Rhodes.

On this PPV, however, there would still be two ladder matches. The other one would be the stipulation for John Cena vs. CM Punk.

Punk is a perfect superstar for a ladder match, especially considering he is the only man to hold the Money in the Bank briefcase on two separate occasions. John Cena is not usually involved in these high-risk matches, but one of the best bouts of his career came in a TLC match against Edge back in 2006.

The stipulation would be a fitting way to celebrate the anniversary of a great feud, especially since neither man has a clear opponent at the PPV. It would also allow for Punk to finish out his series of matches against Daniel Bryan at SummerSlam, the second biggest show of the year.

The contest would have a tough time living up to the original, but the added stipulation of the ladder match and the rekindling of a fantastic rivalry would make Cena vs. Punk III a great main event for Money in the Bank.