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CM Punk-John Cena rivalry will go down as one of the best ever: Inside The Wheelhouse

This past Monday night solidified what I believed to be all along and that is the CM Punk/John Cena rivalry will go down as one of the greatest feuds ever. CM Punk & John Cena ushered in the current era of wrestling we are seeing before our eyes and that’s one of the top reasons why this will go down as the greatest. Now I’m not saying that it’s the greatest ever but it certainly will define a decade of wrestling when we look back at this time period.

Go back and compare it with some of the other best rivalries in wrestling that defined a decade/era. Hulk Hogan vs. “Macho Man” Randy Savage defined the 80s era of wrestling that led to the huge social boom of the WWE. Bret Hart vs. Shawn Michaels defined the early-90s of the WWE and ushered in the era of in-ring technicians being looked at on a higher level then the physically appealing wrestlers that dominated the sport for so many years. And of course The Rock vs. “Stone Cold” Steve Austin defined the late-90s and the beloved “Attitude Era.”

I wouldn’t put CM Punk vs. John Cena on those levels just yet but it is certainly knocking on those rivalries doors currently. Historically speaking CM Punk and John Cena changed the WWE product in July 2011 with their feud leading into the “Money in the Bank” pay-per-view. While most remember it for that “pipebomb promo,” I remember it for the 5-star match the two stars put on for the fans in Chicago and the unpredictability of the match.

That night and that short period of time ushered into a new era of WWE wrestling that some fans have still yet to realize right now. From that point on until present times the WWE changed their focus off of the John Cena’s and Randy Orton’s of the world to the CM Punk’s, Daniel Bryan’s & Dolph Ziggler’s of the company. Everything wrestling fans wanted (more in-ring wrestling, certain stars to be pushed, tag team matches, John Cena to look more “human”) they got and while the “cool thing” maybe to bash the product on various social media outlets, you cannot disagree the WWE isn’t trying to give fans what they want.

The only thing left for CM Punk and John Cena was to see if they could have that “WrestleMania style match” since Hogan/Savage, Hart/Michaels and Rock/Austin all battled on the greatest stage of them all. Well they proved that could happen when Punk & Cena put on a wrestling clinic that left the fans wanting more on free TV. If that match on Monday Night wasn’t a “WrestleMania style match” then I don’t know what is.

I’m all for Punk and Cena getting that WrestleMania match in the near future because I think they have proven that there is money to be made and a chemistry that not many feuds/rivalries necessarily have or will ever have. Punk/Cena has that chemistry that Hart/Michaels, Austin/Rock and Savage/Hogan have. You can see it in the matches that they have, the promos that they cut and the energy that fans are feeding off of. You can’t force that in professional wrestling, it has to come naturally and Punk vs. Cena has that.

When we look back at this rivalry many wrestling fans will remember it fondly because it has defined an era and/or decade of wrestling and that doesn’t come around all the time. It’s amazing to see that nearly 25 years later we once again find that Hogan (Cena) & Savage (Punk) feud that many wrestling fans, like myself, grew up on. It’s an amazing time in wrestling and I hope fans start soaking in the matches Punk & Cena have because we may not see it for sometime again.

If I’m the WWE I pencil in John Cena vs. CM Punk right now for the main event for WrestleMania 30. There is no other match in professional wrestling that should headline the 30th anniversary of the biggest wrestling event created then those two.

For more on this topic join us for the Thursday February 28th edition of “The Still Real to Us Show” and download the show at www.wheelhouseradio.com or www.wrestlechat.net.

You can listen to Jeff on “The Bower Show” every Monday – Friday from 3pm – 7pm ET on 97.9 ESPN in Hartford, CT. You can listen online at www.979espn.com

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Jeff Peck

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