Money in the Bank Moments: CM Punk wins the WWE Championship

Mark Freitas
FiredUp Network Sports Writer


Friday, June 9, 2023

Through the years of the WWE, they have always found ways to create new match types in the company. In 2005, Chris Jericho introduced a new match called the Money in the Bank Ladder Match.

Since its debut, the Money in the Bank match has become a staple in the WWE, with a premium live event named after it. 

For the last 12 years, the Money in the Bank show has left us with unforgettable moments besides the Ladder Match.

Today, I will start a new series about some of the best moments in the event's history.

Kicking off this series with a bang, one of the most shocking moments of the Money in the Bank show and WWE history was when CM Punk won the WWE Championship and walked out on the company. 

2011 will go down in WWE history for being remembered as the summer of Punk. The buildup to this match was excellent. Punk would win a number one contender's match to earn a shot for the WWE Championship against John Cena at the Money in the Bank show. After the match, Punk got on the microphone and said that his contract would expire on July 17, the day of the show, and he vowed to leave with the WWE Championship. 

During the buildup for their match, Punk would drop the infamous "Pipe Bomb," talking about how WWE would be better without Vince McMahon and where he would take the WWE Championship If he won. Name-dropping companies such as Ring of Honour and New Japan Pro Wrestling.

Heading into the Allstate Arena, the place was buzzing. In his hometown of Chicago, the place exploded with cheers when CM Punk's music hit. When John Cena's music hit, there were a lot of boos as Cena entered enemy territory, similar to his match with Rob Van Dam at ECW's One Night Stand show in 2006.

The match was a great back-and-forth battle between Punk and Cena. It began a fantastic rivalry these two would have. In the end, CM Punk would hit the GTS on Cena to win the match and the WWE Championship keeping his promise. 

Punk would escape through the crowd, but before he did that, he blew a kiss to Vince McMahon and left the arena with the championship.

For the first time since 1997, this was the first WWE Championship match that received a five-star rating from Dave Meltzer.  

This match is considered one of the greatest professional wrestling matches ever.

Photo Credits: WWE