After spending so much time the last two months talking about respect and wanting to be taken seriously, CM Punk finally gets the match he needs against John Cena for the WWE championship at Night of Champions.
It might be hard for WWE to resist the temptation to put the title on Cena, especially after he was screwed at SummerSlam last month, but now is the time where Punk should be going over as strongly as possible.
WWE decided to go slow with the Punk heel turn. He attacked The Rock on the 1,000th episode of Raw, but never came out on television and was boisterous about taking down the People's Champion.
Instead, he talked about how he just wanted respect from everyone in the back. That might sound like whining to some, but the fans were still, at least for the most part, on his bandwagon.
As the weeks have passed, Punk has become a full-fledged heel. He attacked Cena from behind, dropped Cena's face on a car and aligned himself with Paul Heyman.
Now, in his first main event since December's TLC pay-per-view, Punk can't afford to start doing jobs to Cena.
If this was anyone else besides Punk, I would assume that Cena was going over and winning the title. Since Punk has a little more pull than just your average star, and WWE realizes that it has no heels right now, where is the logic in taking the title off Punk right now?
Plus, if you have Cena constantly losing in title matches, WWE can build an easy storyline around his presumed rematch with The Rock at WrestleMania.
Since we know Rock is getting a title shot at the Royal Rumble, WWE has already planted the seeds for Punk vs. Rock based on what happened at the 1,000th Raw.
But WWE can build off that momentum if Punk beats Cena. Then the story becomes how Rock is still the top dog in WWE. He has defeated Cena at WrestleMania already, then comes back to win the title on one of the biggest shows of the year.
Those seeds of doubt can be planted in Cena's mind, similar to the angle Rock ran with Chris Jericho for the WCW title in 2001.
And by having Punk go over Cena in this match, it makes Punk look much more formidable. Having the heel champion lose in his first major championship match doesn't do him any favors. Fans will see him as a villain, but one who can't back up his claims for respect.
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