Is this a testament of how good WWE Champion CM Punk is? How over Ryback is becoming? How thirsty fans are for surprises?
I say all three.
If you have a young baby-faced star you want to build to be a long-term main-eventer, have a subtle interaction with his ultimate goal (the WWE Champion). It makes the fans latch on and want to see him succeed because the ultimate goal has already been acknowledged.
Ryback keeps chanting “feed me more.” The ultimate feed is the WWE Champion. The stare down puts the potential match in the minds of the fans, but for now, the young star needs to keep moving through the roster proving himself.
Ryback won't be in the main event against CM Punk at the next pay-per-view. I don't expect anything more than CM Punk taking a verbal shot at Ryback by saying, “Rock Bottom The Rock, defend the WWE title at WrestleMania, be the 10th longest reigning champion in WWE history. When you do that, then come see me.”
WWE is in need of faces. John Cena can't go forever. CM Punk becoming a heel really makes the established face pool as shallow as ever. A surprise finish for Raw with CM Punk being confronted by a new face is one of the simplest cliffhangers for future episodes you can do.
The stare down between Ryback and CM Punk isn't the start of WWE's master plan. It was a test to hear the buzz created and to cliff-hang something that is a very legitimate possibility at some point in the future.
Ryback is one of the faces and stars of the future.
Same thing when Wade Barrett and the Nexus helped Kane bury The Undertaker alive. A full explanation or script hadn't been written out for the future. It was done where the intent can be revisited and booked with an explanation later on.
At that time, Wade Barrett was looked as a heel and star for the future.
An explanation was never given. Reality is, Ryback's stare down with CM Punk might never be fully addressed again.
I think eventually it will because, as I said, Ryback will be in the main events eventually. Just not this month.
Ryback could challenge CM Punk this December, where according to WWE history, new guys often see time in the main events. Ryback could not be in a match with CM Punk until after WrestleMania 29.
It was an audible by the offense to see how the defense reacts. The possibilities are endless. The variables with injury, suspension, crowd reaction and more are endless. Overall, it was a good move by WWE.
Feed me more good moves.