CM Punk quits WWE [VIDEOS]: A look back at 'The Best in the World's' greatest WWE moments
CM Punk walked out on the WWE prior to the Jan. 27 Monday Night RAW live show likely due to the fact that he was frustrated with his place on the card, and though there is some slim hope that "The Best in the World" will return to the company come Monday's show live from his hometown of Chicago, it is likely that he may never return to the squared circle again.
With Punk gone from the WWE at least for now, here is a look back on some of the best moments in Punk's WWE career.
September 1, 2007 (Aired 9/4/07): Punk wins the ECW Championship, his first title in the WWE:
While the ECW title wasn't that big of a thing considering it was the WWE's take on the brand, this was the first title captured by Punk in the company. Punk defeated John Morrison in a "last chance" match at a taping of ECW.
March 30, 2008: Punk wins the Money in the Bank at WrestleMania XXIV:
Punk won one of the biggest matches of his career that launched his first title run at WrestleMania XXIV in 2008 when he captured the Money in the Bank briefcase in a match against Chris Jericho, Montel Vontavious Porter, Shelton Benjamin, John Morrison, Mr. Kennedy and Carlito.
June 30, 2008: Punk cashes in on Edge and wins the World Heavyweight Championship for the first time:
On the June 30 edition of Monday Night RAW, Punk took advantage after Batista beat down World Heavyweight Champion Edge. Punk came down and hit Edge with the GTS and pinned him in the ring to capture the title.
April 5, 2009: Punk wins the Money in the Bank one more time at WrestleMania XXV:
After a stint as a Tag Team Champion with Kofi Kingston and as the Intercontinental Champion, Punk became the first man to win the Money in the Bank ladder match twice by defeating Kane, Mark Henry, MVP, Shelton Benjamin, Kofi Kingston, Christian and Finlay.
June 7, 2009: Punk cashes in and wins the World Heavyweight Championship at Extreme Rules:
Following a ladder match between Jeff Hardy and Edge for the World Heavyweight Championship, Punk took advantage of a fatigued Jeff Hardy and cashed in his Money in the Bank contract. He then pinned Jeff Hardy and captured his second World Heavyweight Championship. This sparked a lengthy feud between the two that culminated in a Tables, Ladders and Chairs match at SummerSlam.
November 27, 2009: The Straight Edge Society is born and Punk kicks off the New Nexus:
Punk's character changed severely in late 2009 when he recruited a group of superstars such as Luke Gallows, Serena and eventually Joey Mercury and began a cult-like following called the Straight Edge Society while growing out his beard and facial hair as well as his chest hair in a Messiah-like gimmick. Punk went through feuds with Rey Mysterio and The Big Show among others and often delivered sermon-inspired promos, one of the most famous of which was in between entrants at the 2010 Royal Rumble. Following the split of the group, Punk was a huge part of the New Nexus, which took over WWE's main storylines for months.
2011: The Summer of Punk and the Pipe Bombs:
With his contract set to expire in the summer of 2011, Punk began to publically blast the WWE after he was given a microphone and told he can get things off of his chest. Punk laid into the WWE, revealing all of his frustrations in the company while dropping his "pipe bombs" throughout the summer in some of the most memorable promos in WWE history. Punk vowed to leave the WWE with the title as his contract expired.
July 17, 2011: With his contract expiring, Punk wins the WWE Championship:
With the summer of Punk in full swing and the last night of Punk being under contract in the WWE being at Money in the Bank in his home state of Illinois, the stage was set for something huge. Punk defeated John Cena in the main event to capture the WWE Championship as he planned to leave the company with the belt.
November 20, 2011: Punk recaptures the title at Survivor Series and kicks off 434 days of Punk:
After losing the WWE Championship, Punk re-captured the gold at the Survivor Series in 2011 and launched a historic 434-day reign as champion until he ultimately lost the belt to The Rock at the 2013 Royal Rumble event.
April 6, 2013: Punk becomes the latest name to fall in The Undertaker's streak:
Though CM Punk is usually frustrated with his place on the WrestleMania card, he still gave it his all during his feud with The Undertaker leading into WrestleMania XXIX that even incorporated the recent death of the late Paul Bearer. The two put on a match that lived up to the great hype of their feud at MetLife Stadium with each man gaining false finishes and hitting their finishing moves. In the end, the Undertaker stood tall and became 21-0 at WrestleMania. This was one of Punk's greatest matches in recent history.
January 26, 2014: Punk puts up a great performance from No.1 in the Royal Rumble:
Little did the WWE Universe know that this night would be the last time Punk would be in a WWE ring at least up until this point. Punk entered the 2014 Royal Rumble match as the No.1 entrant and put up a great performance throughout the night, lasting until after the 30th entrant came out and into the final four. He was eventually eliminated by Kane and he hasn't been seen on WWE television since.
CM Punk has had a great career over the years in the WWE, and even if he doesn't come back, "The Best in the World" has provided the WWE Universe with some great memories. There is still hope that Punk will come back and that he may even appear at RAW in Chicago on Monday, but even if he never comes back, he's left a lasting impression on the WWE.
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