Before last Monday I was overly excited about the upcoming WWE championship match between the title-holder, John Cena, and challenger, CM Punk.
From a storyline perspective, it had the stakes of a major showdown.
If CM Punk won the championship, then he would leave with the company's belt and possibly defend it on other shows. Of course, this would never happen unless CM Punk's departure was a ruse and a cross-promotional deal with another company had been made.
The WWE had been having a hard time making me care about the upcoming PPVs and their respective championship bouts—each was merely one of a series of matches that would happen over the year.
Now—for the first time in a while—the WWE has managed to capture a sense of urgency in its main-event picture.
Cena is not just defending the championship against another challenger; CM Punk is not just the next in a line of wrestlers waiting for their shots.
Until last Monday the storyline had me absorbed. It wasn't just another story, but the future of the WWE Championship, and despite CM Punk's supposed planned departure, the match could have easily gone either way.
If Cena had won, it would have been just another notch on his long list of victories. If Punk had won then, it would have been the opening for a really interesting story in which the company's top belt would be no longer available for the men who see the championship as their ultimate goal.
As I was saying, however, this was an absolution that was, in-part, destroyed last Monday.
Firstly, a new number-one contender was crowned in Alberto Del Rio. Internet rumour has pretty much been buzzing about Cena vs. Del Rio for SummerSlam since the draft.
This could be worked around Vince McMahon's ultimatum: If Cena loses the WWE Championship to CM Punk at Money in the Bank, then he will be fired.
For me this has made what could have been an interesting match up slightly predictable. With Cena's job on the line, it has been all but confirmed that he won't lose the belt to the departing Punk.
The possible goodwill gesture to the Straight Edge Superstar evaporated with those famous Mr. McMahon words.
Last November already saw Cena fired when he failed to help Wade Barrett defeat Randy Orton for the WWE Championship at Survivor Series. It was a train wreck of a story, in which Cena was re-hired only weeks later and never missed an episode of Raw.
It would be too soon to pull such a stunt off again, especially with the last one so fresh in fans minds.
There are still some elements of the match that allow me to look forward to the event, such as it being Punk's last match in the WWE for the time being.
Still, I feel as though it would have been a better decision to keep it as it was after his worked shoot.
The aura of unpredictability has left, and the match is going to suffer for it.
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