WWE Money in the Bank 2012 Review: CM Punk vs. Daniel Bryan Misses the Mark

Eric Ball@@BigLeagueEballFeatured ColumnistJuly 16, 2012

Photo via mmaforum.com
Photo via mmaforum.com

The WWE has been pushing CM Punk vs. Daniel Bryan for weeks now, and it finally culminated at Money in the Bank in a disappointing performance that failed to meet the lofty expectations attached to it.

Punk and Bryan are two of the most technically sound wrestlers in all of the WWE. Both are incredibly athletic, quick on their feet, superb on the ropes and capable of taking some extreme punishment.

The last-minute idea to make this a no disqualification match was a smart decision, and it set the stage for a pay-per-view quality match that should have appeased all fans.

That was the idea at least.

WWE needed these two to put on a show—and they did for the most part. The problem was with the emphasis on the diva AJ Lee, who was the guest referee for the festivities.

Before the match viewers were sent backstage where AJ was speaking with Matt Striker, talking about how Punk is an amazing person, but Bryan is her first love. It was a scene taken straight out of some sort of soap opera.

This was the lead-in for a match with the WWE Championship on the line. How in the world is a testosterone-filled sport like WWE messing with a love story of sorts with so much at stake?

Tom Brady may have a supermodel wife, but nobody cares about it on game day.

Once the festivities got under way, the action was tremendous. The technical wrestling was outstanding, the use of weapons was mixed in beautifully and there was an overall sense of violence that fans have come to expect from these two.

Right in the middle of the match AJ stopped Punk from using a chair, and then ensured Bryan didn’t grab a kendo stick. It was the company’s way of showing she still had feelings for both I guess.

It was completely unnecessary considering she didn’t pick a side and it only slowed the momentum of a match that was, at the time, incredibly intense.

And that’s what AJ ultimately was in this match: a barrier that was in the way. Punk won without any real controversy, and AJ could be seen looking sad that Bryan was lying on a table.

Boo, hoo hoo.

They were battling for the WWE Championship for a reason. These are two of the real kings of the WWE Universe right now, and that should have been the focus of this title match.

Instead, the soap opera angle involving AJ overshadowed everything and it ruined the match. So is AJ getting back together with Bryan now? Was Punk shunning her marriage proposal the final straw?

Who cares?

This has likely marked the end of the Punk vs. Bryan feud as John Cena begins his campaign to face Punk for the WWE Championship, and hopefully AJ fades into the background now.

There is no question she is one pretty lady, and is certainly a worthy diva. But she doesn’t need to be involved in championship matches.

Punk and Bryan put on a good show, but the senseless drama that AJ provided took away a lot of its luster.