As of the writing of this article, the main event for the upcoming Hell in a Cell pay-per-view is CM Punk vs. Ryback for the WWE Championship. Many people can't stand the fact that this match is even happening, while there are some who are ecstatic for the rise of Ryback to the main event so soon.
In what's been one of the more polarizing events in the WWE in recent years, WWE finds itself in a position to bring a new star to the top of the company in relatively short time, and they should take it.
One of the things many people talk about is how the top stars don't make a habit of putting people over, (Randy Orton being the obvious exception). With that said, if John Cena isn't going to take a fall, the next best thing is a victory over CM Punk.
Now, I know the thought of Punk doing a job after over 300 days as WWE Champion may make some people upset, but it's the same prospect as Cena doing a job—even better, considering Punk has been champion 300 days.
The thing about Punk is, he's at the stage both in his career and in his title reign where he can easily do a job for someone else, and not lose a ton of momentum or credibility. That's not just a thought, because there are plenty of facts to support the notion that CM Punk dropping the belt won't hurt him as much as people think.
His opponent, Ryback has been on a tear since he's returned from his ankle injury. Some people will say that his move-set has been limited, but I think it's a decent size and he'll get better. Some people say he can't talk, but the fact is he hasn't really been given a chance.
However, I feel there's ability on the mic in Ryback—it's just not shown.
Can the Ryback Project be a Success should he win the title at Hell in a Cell?
At the bottom, you'll find two promos Ryback cut backstage. Granted, he may have had time to practice and rehearse, but that's why he's technically a SmackDown Superstar, so he can get ready to work live TV on Raw.
In addition to that, Ryback has received a lot of exposure in a very short amount of time.
Some will say it's due to being brainwashed to chant along with Ryback, but I doubt the general public is as easily manipulated as people think, and people generally like Ryback because he's a different character than what we're accustomed to in the WWE.
Is that so difficult to think?
Aside from that, let's look at CM Punk for a minute. CM Punk is looking at a full year as WWE Champion. A feat we haven't seen done in a very long time. That alone is a huge boost to his stock.
CM Punk has beaten the best the WWE has to offer. He's taken down just about every big name in the WWE at this point. He's beaten Daniel Bryan, Kane, Dolph Ziggler, Mark Henry, Chris Jericho, Alberto Del Rio, and a slew of other superstars.
The only people he hasn't beaten outright are Randy Orton, John Cena, and Ryback; and with Orton busy and Cena injured, there's only one man left.
People will cry "but what about Rock vs. Punk!?" when the notion of Ryback as WWE Champion comes to mind.
If Not Ryback, then who should beat Punk for the Title?
However, there are a couple of things people don't think about when they ask that question. CM Punk attacked Rock for not showing him respect, something CM Punk will probably demand with or without the title for awhile until his next gimmick change, so with that in mind, who's to say Rock vs. Punk has to be for the title?
Whatever happened to the days when guys could fight simply because they don't like each other? The other thing to think about is that there are plenty of ways this could play out to benefit everyone—Rock and Cena included.
First, everyone and their mother seems to think Brock Lesnar will interfere at Hell in a Cell...but what if he doesn't?
What if Punk loses his WWE title to Ryback?
So, we get to Raw and here we have CM Punk throwing a fit over not being champion going into Survivor Series, only for Cena to let Punk know that he has to do like Cena, and realize that the future is now, and that now it's Ryback's time in the sun.
CM Punk calls Cena a hypocrite for essentially taking up everyone else's time in the sun for the past few years, before announcing that it's still his time and that he'll be using his rematch clause that night on Raw.
THEN we have Lesnar insert himself into the situation, having the match end in DQ, only for Cena to come in and help Ryback. Raw ends with all four men going at it—Cena fighting Punk and Lesnar fighting Ryback.
How would you feel about a Brock Lesnar vs. Ryback feud
The following Raw, Vince McMahon announces there will be no WWE Championship match at Survivor Series, but the match is instead headlined by the traditional elimination match: Team Ryback vs. Team Punk.
Team Ryback is Ryback, Cena, Hell No and Mr.McMahon.
Team Punk is Punk, Lesnar, Rhode Scholars and Dolph Ziggler
Vince also announces that the night after Survivor Series, he'll have a special accommodations made for whoever can survive the match.
So, we get to Survivor Series, and here's the order of elimination:
Kane: Eliminated by Damien Sandow (via Terminus).
Sandow: Eliminated by Daniel Bryan (via No Lock).
Bryan: Eliminated by Cody Rhodes (via Beautiful Disaster).
Rhodes: Eliminated by Ryback (via Shell Shock).
Ryback and Brock Lesnar: double count-out.
Ziggler: Eliminated by John Cena (via Attitude Adjustment).
Mr.McMahon: Eliminated by CM Punk (via G.T.S).
The finals of the match come down to Punk vs. Cena, and just as Punk's about to put Cena to sleep, The Rock returns to Survivor Series and distracts Punk long enough for Cena to hit the Attitude Adjustment for the win, with Rock putting the cherry on top with The People's Elbow, before having a stare-down with Cena to close the PPV.
There's more to the story, but I'm getting a bit off topic here.
The point is, Ryback as champion is good because it offers more variety to a main-event scene that many people have called stale. It's good, because it's a sign that WWE will perhaps begin to push new talent, it's good because Ryback is what the audience wants.
CM Punk is a six-time World Champion. One loss isn't going to change all that.
Ryback needs the title more than Punk right now, and after nearly a year in the main-event scene (to put that into perspective, he's been in there longer than Alberto Del Rio has, and people are very tired of him in the main event), don't you think it's time to shake things up?
Ryback is an investment in the future, and often times people will talk about WWE needs to do this and that to succeed in the future.
Well, it looks like the strategy for success for now is to feed Ryback the WWE Championship. WWE is on the right track, and CM Punk's willingness to put someone over will be a big part of that and isn't that what the fans want? For their guy to be a big part of something?
Also, as promised, two Ryback promos (Just in case they don't show up in the actual article.)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M93oLEg8Spk&feature=related (the promo here stars about 50 seconds in.)