CM Punk vs. The Rock: What's at Stake in Elimination Chamber Showdown

Ryan DavenportContributor IFebruary 17, 2013

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

Sunday night, two of professional wrestling's most celebrated champions will go toe to toe in a hotly-anticipated showdown, when The Rock takes on CM Punk in the Elimination Chamber

Obviously, a bout between two of the sport's most prominent figures is always going to generate hype and excitement, but heading into the fight, there's a lot more than bragging rights on the line, as both will be looking to secure a spot in WrestleMania 29. 

Not to mention the belt. 

For The Rock, this match presents the superstar with another opportunity to show that he is the unquestioned top dog as WWE Champion, and there's no better way to prove that than by beating arguably the most-feared wrestler on the circuit. 

But last month, when the pair faced off in Phoenix, The Rock upset Punk and ended his 434-day reign as WWE Champion in decisive fashion, reclaiming the title for the first time since 2002. 

Soon after though, Punk (via was quick to demand a rematch

So it was of no surprise when, during The Rock’s celebratory address to the WWE Universe as its new champion, The Straight Edge Superstar himself declared would be evoking his rematch clause – “granting” Rock a rematch was how he earned it – at Elimination Chamber. It was also of no surprise that The Rock gladly accepted.

Punk obviously believes he has a shot at exacting revenge on The Rock, but beating the veteran superstar and WWE's elder statesman won't be easy, especially given how strong he looked during their recent showdown. 

The Rock is competing at a level he hasn't reached since returning to the WWE in 2011, which is why he has to be considered the favorite heading into the Elimination Chamber showdown. 

Regardless of the outcome, it's a given that this won't be the last high-stakes meeting between the two, because neither will be content with watching the other parade around as the sport's greatest competitor, and both ultimately believe that they deserve to be considered in the conversation of "greatest wrestler of all time."