Monday, July 18, 2011

Guest Blog: We Want CM Punk

The conquering hero
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Guest blog time, as Vince Morales, a TWB superfan and blogger in his own right (a link to his site can be found at the end in his signature), sent me an unsolicited report for last night's PPV. It's basically a study on the crowd, which I can pretty much guarantee Vince is an expert on, given he was there.

Last night the WWE took over Allstate Arena and delivered one of the greatest shows in company history. The booking was spot on, the matches were excellent and the wrestlers all brought their A-game. It was the perfect show and a lot of the credit for it is being given to the crowd. The crowd, they say, took things to another level with the atmosphere they created. I was a part of this crowd and I would agree with this wholeheartedly. I lost my voice at this show and that has never happened to me before. It was a great crowd, but I have to disagree when people refer to it as a heel crowd.

A heel crowd would imply that the crowd wanted only for the heels to win and the babyfaces to lose and for them to spill their blood all over the arena while they lost. While this may be true in the case of John Cena on the whole I would argue that it was less about babyfaces spilling their blood and more about new blood. The crowd was hungry for some new blood in the main event scene and tonight's event set the perfect scene for that to happen.

Think about it. The Money in the Bank matches determine the next #1 contender and normally, the next champion. The fans booed Rey Mysterio's climb to the top because they've seen it before. Rey Mysterio was in a World title match at Wrestlemania 22 in that very building. The fans didn't hate Rey, they just didn't want him to win. If Kane would have been given a tease climb in the Smackdown match it would have been met with the same reaction. We been there, we done that. The fans cheering Alberto Del Rio for winning wasn't because they loved Del Rio so much, it was because he was the right person to win the match and they knew it. The guy is ready to be a star and the crowd treated him like one. The "heel crowd" comments really start to show up when people talk about the two World title matches. Cena was the biggest heel on the show and Orton was up there too. The reasons why should seem obvious. To paraphrase Punk, Randy Orton (8 titles) and John Cena (10 titles) are the New York Yankees. They were both in main events of that Chicago Wrestlemania and they have been in the main events of nearly ever pay-per-view since. They've beaten everyone and lost to no one. The crowd was ready for something different and they were tired of rooting for the favorite. People haven't forgotten about Christian's two minute World title run or the fact that he's never really beaten Randy Orton and that makes him an underdog. The rules may have been against Randy Orton, but the odds certainly weren't. Christian was an underdog, the underdog plays. And Punk? Well...

Chicago is famously home to the Austin-Hart double turn match at Wrestlemania 13 and there are very few crowds in the United States who would have handled that transition as seamlessly as Chicago did on that night. Last night a similar thing happened. While the last few weeks of CM Punk promos have won over a large portion of the fanbase and built towards this, last night was it's culmination. On Punk's last night in the company he got his last chance to overcome the dynasty of the WWE that is John Cena in front of his hometown and take a big piece out of the system that has held him down for years, but the system (Vince McMahon) wasn't going to let him go easy. Punk wasn't just the underdog, he was the ultimate underdog. How could you not cheer for him? The second he walked through that curtain there was no turning back and Punk had the crowd in the palm of his hand. Last night was Punk's night to tell his story and it unfolded beautifully. To call a crowd heel for cheering for it simply doesn't pay attention to the facts.

So, no, last night's crowd wasn't a heel crowd. Last night was a crowd full of people who love wrestling and care about wrestling. They want it to be like it was last night, not like it has been. A lot of them (wrongly) blame John Cena for that. They want the Attitude era back, but that doesn't mean they want string bikinis and Mark Henry sleeping with transvestites. They want the attitude of the Attitude era back. They want Randy Orton to act like he acted after the match all the time, they want people to get Pillmanized, they want main events that matter and they want CM Punk.

Oh boy, do they ever want CM Punk.

When he's not obsessing about CHIKARA and the Second City Saints, Vince Morales writes the best Brewers blog in the world Miller Park Drunk.

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