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The Rock vs. CM Punk: Previewing WWE Title Match at 2013 Royal Rumble

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - FEBRUARY 16: Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson attends a press conference to announce that MetLife Stadium will host WWE Wrestlemania 29 in 2013 at MetLife Stadium on February 16, 2012 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Michael N. Todaro/Getty Images)
Michael N. Todaro/Getty Images
Donald WoodFeatured ColumnistJanuary 23, 2013

With less than a week until the 2013 Royal Rumble, the excitement over the WWE Championship match between defending champion CM Punk and The Rock has reached a fever pitch.

Punk versus The Rock is a WrestleMania-worthy main event, and the WWE Universe is getting it on the same card as the 30-man Royal Rumble Match.

Add in the fact that the longest title reign of the past 25 years is possibly coming to an end and The Rock could be the one that walks out of the Royal Rumble with the WWE Championship, and no fan will want to miss this event.

 

When: Sunday, January 27, 2013

Where: US Airways Center in Phoenix, Ariz.

Start Time: PPV at 8 p.m. ET, free YouTube Pre-Show at 7:30 p.m. ET

Live Stream Info: WWE.com

 

The Rock’s Keys to Victory

While Punk is the defending champion, The Rock has the decisive size and power advantage in this matchup. Punk is a respectable 6’2” and 218 pounds, but The Rock is a 6’5”, 260-pound athlete that looks to be in the best shape of his career

The Rock will tower over Punk in this match, and it will be that difference in height and weight that wears Punk down over the course of a longer match.

Ring rust may be an issue for The Rock, but the former world champion’s WrestleMania run in 2012 and all the previous experience in the WWE proves he knows what it takes to win in the big moments.

 

CM Punk’s Keys to Victory

If there were payable odds on this fight, defending champion CM Punk would have to be the favorite coming into this match despite The Rock’s size advantage. Punk is a flat-out better technical wrestler, and should have The Rock on the ropes throughout this match.

The current WWE champion is coming off knee surgery, but non-stop wrestling over the last decade has given the defending the champ the edge in this match.

Whatever The Rock is going to attack Punk with Sunday, he’ll have faced it many times before.

 

Prediction: The Rock Wins the WWE Title

While The Rock may have been brutally attacked by The Shield on Monday night’s edition of Raw, CEO Vince McMahon helped the former champion even the odds against current WWE champion CM Punk by announcing Punk would lose the title if there is interference.

Now that there is no way an outside force can cost The Rock his shot at the WWE title—no Brad Maddox or The Shield at the Royal Rumble—Punk and his title reign are in serious trouble.

After months of having the matches for Punk’s title decided by outside interference, the WWE Universe will finally be treated to an amazing match with a clean ending.

The Rock walks out of the Royal Rumble with the WWE Championship.

 

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