Punk was handed a tough loss, but his unbelievable title reign was the longest of the past quarter-century, and a loss to The Rock in a match that will go down in history as one of the most memorable non-WrestleMania matches ever will only build Punk’s aura in the long run.
As for The Rock, there are huge plans in store for the new WWE Champion.
The WWE knew all along that The Rock would be the company’s main attraction from the time he returned until the time he left after WrestleMania 29, and the idea all along has been to maximize the exposure they can get with The Rock on the roster.
The Rock has several movies coming out in 2013—G.I. Joe: Retaliation, Fast Six, Pain and Gain, Snitch and Empire State—and the WWE as a business is trying to use the mainstream popularity of the new WWE champion to get the company over with a new set of fans.
Giving the title to The Rock is the right decision for the long-term financial stability of the WWE.
It’s obvious that the WWE Universe should expect to see The Rock on every episode of Raw leading up to the Elimination Chamber PPV, and the back-and-forth between Punk and Rock building to the rematch will be better than the build to their first matchup.
Despite being called Elimination Chamber, there is a chance that the rematch between Punk and The Rock would be a one-on-one match with no stipulation.
While that would leave only one Elimination Chamber match on the card (for the World Heavyweight Championship), the WWE already set that precedent by having only one Hell in a Cell match at that event in 2012.
At Elimination Chamber, The Rock will beat Punk once again and retain his title.
The Rock is already the champion, so there is no reason for the WWE to put the strap back on Punk and discount the credibility of the company’s biggest draw right now.
After his win at the Royal Rumble, The Rock is on a collision course with the main event of WrestleMania.
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