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#1. CM Punk - 365 Days & Counting
I'm not taking anything I've said about CM Punk back, but I will admit that he's far surpassed my expectations as a heel champion. He's truly in a league of his own and his incredible run with the WWE Championship has been an absolute thrill to watch. And will continue to be for at least the next two months.
There are a ton of rumors circulating regarding CM Punk's role at next year's WrestleMania event. Will Punk defeat Rock at the Rumble and go into WrestleMania continuing his reign as champ? There was a report stating Punk would close the show, regardless of who is he facing and what other matches are on the card. One of the recent rumors was the idea of Punk defending his title against the Undertaker and his streak. That of course leads to conversation of whether or not Punk should be the one to defeat Taker and end the infamous streak.
All of those questions are valid, but I'm more loving the fact CM Punk is right in the middle of all of it. He may no longer be the "voice of the voiceless" or the pipebomb-dropping, babyface rebel we grew to love following that one sitdown promo at the top of the entrance ramp last summer, but he's still the most relevant star going today. And depending on how long they continue going with his current gimmick, he could end up as one of the all-time greatest heels the business has ever seen as well.
I don't think we've seen the last "good" in CM Punk, but this run as the number one bad guy has probably done more for his ultimate legacy than all the "shoot" promos in the world could have done. It's been THAT incredible.
I don't know who Punk will face at 'Mania next year, but I don't think it's going to matter. Even with Rock, Brock, Taker and Cena on the card, Punk will one of the primary reasons fans are buying that event. He should also be one of the two reasons fans buy the following WrestleMania if Austin is good to return by then.
I know what Austin has said in interviews. I've seen what Jim Ross has written in his blogs. Vince McMahon would be a fool to not make that match happen if Austin is physically able to do it.
And dare I say that it would do even bigger numbers than Rock/Cena from this year? Yes, I dare.