I would just like to start off by mentioning that all my WWE reports are based on NO backstage sources. There is no insider information here, folks. I just calls 'em as I sees 'em.
It's understandable there is a bit of a backlash lately towards all the inside gossip floating around online. Wrestling, especially WWE wrestling, is theatre and while it doesn't necessarily hurt to know if our hero dies at the end of the story, it does hurt if we get all the ins-and-outs of the story weeks in advance.
Also, sometimes it's just people bullshitting. Which is what I'm doing, but I'm upfront an honest about it and not trying to pass it off as facts because I've heard that an unnamed source heard from his cousin that a wrestler won't be renewing their contract.
But they're totally not renewing their contract.
Folks, I have a theory. This theory involves two pieces of information that we know to be true and then one leap of faith. So bear with me as I spitball with you here.
As of writing this article, CM Punk has been the WWE champion for 316 days. I know this because I looked it up here but also because they haven't shut up about it on air for a while. The WWE aren't subtle about anything folks, they're telling us this because it's going to be important later. And I think I know why.
Cast your mind back to Wrestlemania. Daniel Bryan and Sheamus had a blink-and-you'll-miss-it match for the World Heavyweight championship. 18 seconds, it famously lasted for. The WWE were trying to break their record for the shortest title match. This record was previously held by Diesel who pinned Bob Backlund in 8 seconds during a non-televised event. WWE, being the true pros of spin that they are, managed to break a record for the shortest Wrestlemania title change-over but it wasn't the one they wanted.
CM Punk signed a lucrative new contract with the WWE when he returned after his much publicised disappearance act. It's not uncommon for things like title runs to be part of the negotiations... I think you can see where I'm going with this.
Punk is currently the 10th longest, single run, WWE champion with his 316 days. So lets take a look at the folks in front of him.
|Wrestler||Days Held||Date Won||Date Lost|
|Bruno Sammartino||2,803||May 17, 1963||January 18, 1971|
|Bob Backlund||2,135||February 20, 1978||December 26, 1983|
|Hulk Hogan||1,474||January 23, 1984||February 5, 1988|
|Bruno Sammartino||1,237||December 10, 1973||April 30, 1977|
|Pedro Morales||1,027||February 8, 1971||December 1, 1973|
|John Cena||380||September 17, 2006||October 2, 2007|
|Randy Savage||371||March 27, 1988||April 2, 1989|
|Hulk Hogan||364||April 2, 1989||April 1, 1990|
|Diesel||358||November 26, 1994||November 19, 1995|
As you can see, the really big runs came back in the 70s and 80s with Bruno Sammartino having an incredible run spanning nearly 8 years. Wow. And to follow that up with another 4 year run in 73 means that Sammartino has held the title longer than a lot of WWE fans have lived.
Do I think Punk will have an 8 year run? Nope. The time when they can get away with that is long gone. But I have a funny feeling he's going to beat #6 on that list.
For the last number of years John Cena has been the man in the WWE. In a lot of ways he's been both their mascot and their quarterback at the same time. They've placed the company on his (very large) shoulders and he has run with it. I have a funny feeling Punk, with his new leverage in the company, is being positioned as the next company man. The new flagship. The longest running WWE champion in history, remember the belt would have been WWF and WWWF for the top 5 wrestlers so they can phrase it like that if they want, and I'm sure they will.
So strap yourselves in folks, because if I'm right, we'll have Punk as champ until 2013. It could be one hell of a ride.