“Save Us, CM Punk“ – The Abrupt Departure of a Fan Favorite
The Straight-Edge Superstar. The Second City Savior. Mr. Money in the Bank.
THE BEST IN THE WORLD.
No matter the moniker you refer to him as, one thing is for sure: CM Punk’s absence from the WWE has left an immense void that no other superstar can fill.
After a year which saw him tame Ryback and Paul Heyman in a Hell in a Cell handicap match, come within inches of defeating the Undertaker at Wrestlemania and, last but not least, enjoy a 434 day WWE Championship title reign, Phillip Brooks had had enough of a business he had risked his well-being and damaged his body for.
At Royal Rumble 2014, Punk came in as the number one entrant for the annual over-the-top-rope battle royal, in which a winner is granted a match against the WWE Champion at the promotions pinnacle show, Wrestlemania. But this was not to be CM Punk’s time. Instead as WWE has done time and time again, it rewarded a “part-time” superstar – this time the returning Batista.
As he took punishment for over an hour, outlasting the majority of the locker room to reach the final four before being eliminated, I think something snapped inside CM Punk. Maybe it was the push of a wrestler who had left the company to pursue Hollywood, maybe it was the day in and day out abuse his body took as he was one of the few wrestlers to leave it all in the ring, but one thing was for sure: he had made up his mind.
Enough was enough.
The following night as WWE’s flagship program, Monday Night Raw, was set to air, CM Punk was preparing for his typical Monday. He would enter to fanfare, be poetic and captivating on the microphone and put on yet another awe inspiring match. On this Monday however, none of that would happen.
There is still speculation as to what the arguments occurred in the locker room. Some say he just threw in the towel and walked away. Other rumors have WWE officials telling him to inform the crowd that he had sustained injuries which never occurred, robbing them of their antihero.
All that has been confirmed were the final words exchanged between CM Punk and Vince McMahon as he walked out the arena doors: “I’m going home.”
Since that night, at every show and every pay-per-view, every fan still chants his name. After what seemed to be a long avoidance by WWE to address the elephant in the room, they even mocked the crowd as part of the story, referring to their absent savior – the man they cheered for – as “weak minded” and “unable to handle the pressure.”
With every insult hurled, however, the cheers and chants grew louder.
The man had truly risen to the levels that not many wrestlers have been able to claim, despite their trademarked nomenclature: a superstar.
Now, more than ever, the WWE Universe screams for his return.With fan favorite Daniel Bryan falling to injury, only one man can save them from the authoritative tyranny that, week in and week out, dictates what the fans are forced to swallow.
When will he return? Will he ever return? There are new rumors and speculation every day, but the one thing the majority of the fans scream in unison is, “Save us, CM Punk.”
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