Since his infamous shoot promo at the conclusion of Monday Night Raw this past June, CM Punk had set his sights on once again capturing the WWE Championship.
Of course the Straight-Edge Superstar struck gold at the highly praised Money in the Bank pay-per-view in July, but his reign would quickly come to an end due to an opportunistic Alberto Del Rio cashing in his MITB briefcase in the closing moments of SummerSlam.
Ironically enough, Punk's quest to regain the belt comes full circle this Sunday, as he contends for the title against the two-time WWE Champion, Del Rio, at Survivor Series.
Although his first few attempts at receiving a shot against Del Rio were squandered at first due to complications with interim Raw general manager John Laurinaitis, Punk was able to receive his much-deserved championship match by forcing Del Rio to agree to it after applying a vicious Anaconda Vice to the Mexican Aristocrat.
For the second consecutive week, Del Rio got the better of Punk on Raw by pinning the Chicago native in a tag team match. Last week, the WWE Champion left Punk lying following an ambush backstage that saw Del Rio put his nemesis through a table.
Usually, this would signal that the face with the odds stacked against him is bound to bounce back and emerge victorious come their eventual encounter.
However, I'm hopeful this was done in order to help Del Rio regain the heat he has managed to slowly lose over the past few months, and further exemplify him as the top heel on the flagship show.
With it still being early in the feud, I fully expect to Del Rio to walk out of Madison Square Garden with his belt, more than likely with the aid of his loyal ring announcer Ricardo Rodriguez, or better yet, his former NXT rookie Brodus Clay.
Regardless of how it plays out, Punk winning back the strap at this point would feel meaningless, mostly due to the fact that the WWE Championship has changed hands so frequently since July, and it's prestige is waning.
As big of a fan as I am of the outspoken CM Punk, I believe his quest for change in the WWE, as well as his leadership of the "Reality Era," will be put on hold for the time being, allowing the 2011 Royal Rumble winner to prove many people wrong by successfully retaining his strap.
However, if anything can be learned from the creative team's recent booking is that anything is possible in the ever-changing world of professional wrestling.
With that being said, who is your primary pick to be declared the victor in the highly anticipated bout between Alberto Del Rio and CM Punk for the WWE Championship at Survivor Series?
Will Del Rio's destiny continue it's hot streak, or will CM Punk's quest for change as WWE Champion finally come to a close this Sunday?
Visit my website at Next Era Wrestling as well as my WrestleRant and Spoilers podcasts for more of GSM's thoughts and writings, along with WWE/TNA news, recaps and more. Follow me on Twitter @SAVE_US_GSM.