When Does Punk Drop The Title?, WWE HOF Possibilities, Evaluating New Talent, WNW & WWE

Seeing now that he is over 400 days, how much longer do you think CM Punk will hold the WWE Championship?

The plan has been for months to do CM Punk vs. The Rock at Royal Rumble for the WWE Championship. Due to the fact the WWE roster is very thin and Punk is over like rover, his title reign has been extended to historic proportions. The big question now is when does he drop it and who does he drop it too? I'm not crazy about Rock (a part-timer) over Punk, just like I wasn't crazy about Rock over Cena but I don't see how Rock can go under at Royal Rumble and have appeal for Wrestlemania. He's confirmed for Elimination Chamber so if I'm booking, I'm putting Rock over at Royal Rumble, having him successfully defend at Elimination Chamber and drop it at Wrestlemania in the ultimate "passing of the torch." The outcomes are unknown and this is my scenario much like you can come up with your own scenario.

I know the same as everyone else as to why Bruno Sammartino and Owen Hart won't enter the WWE Hall of Fame any time soon, but what would it do for the WWE if they could induct them? After all, they do seem very eager to induct both of them and even though Bruno himself doesn't want to, they don't seem to have an 'If he doesn't want us, we don't want him' attitude.

Martha Hart, the widow of Owen, has blocked him from being inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame despite many in the company pushing for it to happen. Triple H has met with Bruno Smmartino about inducting him next year but he doesn't want too because of his strained relationship with Vince McMahon. I heard Hunter put on a "full court press" to get him to agree but so far, the only likely name for next year's Hall of Fame is Mick Foley. I don't know how else to answer this question other than Owen is extremely unlikely because of Martha and Bruno says no because of Vince. Foley at this point has been ordered to be protected because he is the potential face of next year's class.

I know it's still very early on in their WWE careers and you don't like answering questions like this, but if you could only pick one, who do you think has the brightest future? Antonio Cesaro, Damien Sandow, The Shield, Big E Langston? In my opinion I think they all have bright furthers, but there's just something about Cesaro that reads face of the company to me.

What I don't like about this question is it's impossible to give a satisfactory response. We haven't seen enough of any of them (in WWE) to gauge their longevity. It's also important to remember that looks can be deceiving as two years ago Wade Barrett seemed ready to break out and heading into 2013, he's nothing more than a midcard talent. However, based on what we have seen, Antonio Cesaro is the "right now" prospect high on the WWE radar but even he has many hurdles to cross before entering the main event. Sandow is a guy Vince McMahon likes but he hasn't come close to reaching his full potential. The Shield tore down the house at WWE TLC in a match of the year candidate although it's still a very small body of work to make any sort of long-term judgment. I'm unable to judge Big E Langston at all until I at least see him work a match.

I was wondering if you could give us more details about your relationship with WWE. I've recently read that you are contacted on a regular basis by WWE representatives concerning the content of your website despite how they blatantly bury internet websites regardless of their actual value. So simply put, what kind of discussions and information do you generally talk about?

WWE has employees designated to handle the company's relationship with the media and their job is to communicate with us to help maintain the accuracy of information. There are times WWE will contact us over stories and there are times when I will contact them for confirmation. However, my sources maintain the highest level of priority in bringing information to the readers of Wrestling News World. I have many close relationships that help me break stories before anyone else and I always stand by my sources.

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  • David

    People keep asking who's going to be the next big star. Go back to 1996 or 1997. Do you think the fans back then saw the Ringmaster of Rocky Maivia and said those guys will become the biggest names in wrestling?

    • Chris

      Bret Hart did

  • Spike westphal

    I guess you won’t name your sources oh well never mind

    • PFElton

      No shit you idiot.

    • SRP

      Reporters don’t name sources. It it was known that a person was feeding information to the press, their livelihood could be put at risk.

    • Here is the name of Richard’s source: Vincent K. McMahon

      Sorry Richard, cats out the bag now.

  • elstitchio

    I would say the rock has to go over at the rumble but who would he drop it to at mania? Cena or punk? I would say punk

    • Gary

      WM is Rock vs. Cena again. The passing of the torch he mentioned is Rock giving back to Cena on the biggest stage b/c Cena is the face of today's company and Rock already got the win last year. Its the right thing to do wrestling-wise, but the crappy part of the whole situation is CM Punk's title reign ends in a loss to a part-timer and isn't used to put someone else over, as it should be. Just like if anyone is to end Undertaker's streak it HAS to be someone that gets put over huge that they're trying to cement as a real deal superstar going forward.

  • Darkstalker

    Richard, don't you think, Wade Barrett´s current place in the roster (on the card) has to do with his injury this year? Would´t you agree, he might be way up there in the main event by now if that hadn't set him back?

  • outkazt09

    am gonna have to disagree with the Tlc match, the shield vs rybak, kane, bryan, being a match of the year candidate. the match was good, but I felt it needed that “big spot” to be considered a match of the year candidate.

    • The Big Organ

      Did you even watch the match? There was a huge spot when Seth Rollins went through the tables off the top of the ladder and even hit the back of his head at the edge of one of the tables!

      • Outkazt09

        Am talking bigger than that.

  • Dave Barton

    I saw it coming a mile away once it was announced Rock would get a WWE Title shot at RR against "whomever the champion may be." Rock will beat Punk at RR (with probable interference from Austin so Punk can face him at WM)., then Rock will go on to lose the title to Cena at WM.

    It just seems much to predictable, so I genuinely hope they can surprise me in a good way. But Rock losing at RR would indeed lower his stock for WM. But Cena get his "win back" from Rock is not something I want to see at WM, especially for the WWE Title. But that seems to leave the only other option being that Austin challenges Punk for the Title at WM, but then Austin has to lose because he can't wrestle anywhere near full-time.

    Been painting yourselves into corners alot lately, haven't you WWE?

  • John

    Is it my imagination or was their a story on the premium site a week or so ago regarding negotiation's between WWE/Stone Cold about working Wrestlemania, which seems to have been taken off the site? Did it upset WWE? or is this story all in my head?

  • jambo masai from kenya

    The undertaker should induct mick foley into hof

    • Sam The Man.

      Terry Funk.

  • Stoney

    I hope to see Booker T in the hall of fame because he was great tag team wrestler, a great singles wrestler, and he also won every WCW title.

  • jmac0313

    I see Brock running in saving punk, costing Rock the title and setting up Brock vs Rock at wrestlemania 29!!!

  • Adam “Swipe”

    I’d rather see Punk win at the rumble and EC and they promote WM as Rock vs Punk(c) “Rock’s last chance to prove he’s still got it.”

    • Jay

      I don't see how they can make it his last chance to prove himself considering his last match was the main event of Wrestlemania and he beat WWE's supposedly "face of the company".

  • The Big Organ

    I’m not much of a CM Punk fan these days but not because of his heel turn…regardless he’s done a damn good job at being WWE champion. As I see it there is no one at this point in time who needs to hold the belt because as we can see, Dolph is world title bound. Alberto Del Rio is in his early stages of his babyface turn which still needs to be developed. Randy is no longer eligible because of his issues. Ryback is just too soon and it won’t work unless he wins a big time match like The Royal Rumble. Cena, well come on do we n really need to see Cena as WWE Champ? Guys like Barrett, Kofi, Cesaro and the Shield are not up there yet. I would say keep the title on Punk, have Brock Lesnar come out and coat The Rock the title setting up Rock vs Brock 2 at Mania! Have Ryback win the Rumble match setting up Ryback vs Punk at Mania while Cena faces The Undertaker! I would love this set up!

    • Jay

      Agree with everything except Cena vs Taker, as much as i would like to see Taker at mania i think that after HBK and HHH theres no one who he can face to excel his streak and i think making him lose to one of the guys now would be worse

  • AnacondaVise

    I would be shocked if Rock doesn't beat Punk at RR and that is coming from a HUGE Punk fan. That said I really can't see Rock keeping the Championship long he is just to busy with other things.

  • AnacondaVise

    I love Damien Sandow I really think he is going to have a bright future.

  • David

    I honestly don't want Punk to lose at the Royal Rumble Pay-Per-View. I know that this may not be agreed upon by some people nut I want Punk to be Champ until July 20, 2018 just because that is the title reign that he can obviously break. I mean if he has beaten everyone then there is no way he could lose it.

  • Rayner Chee-bai

    Just like Ryback who's being pushed down our throat for so long now, Big E Langston is kinda like a "Doofus Version" of Ezekiel Jackson. Agree with me?

  • Birdman

    Richard. I don't think you understood the question from the reader who asked about the HOF inductions, because you never answered it. I believe he was trying to ask you how the WWE benefits from inducting people? Why are they trying so hard to induct people that don't want to be inducted?? what is the WWE's gain?? I hope I understood the readers question…

  • Jeff Block

    While being a great worker, Owen Hart should NEVER be in the Hall of Fame. He simply wasn't that good of at drawing and the only reason anyone would consider Owen is because of how he died. Owen going in would be the martyr move and not in any way due to being deserved.

    • Dave Barton

      Trying to be as objective as possible, I do agree with you. The thought has crossed my mind every time the new HOF inductions are announced each year.

      But to induct him would mean acknowledging (and reminding us) why he's no longer here. That'd be a PR nightmare.

      Also, while its debatable whether or not he "deserves" a spot in the HOF for his actual contributions…can you honestly say Koko B. Ware or Johnny Rodz did more for the business than Owen?

  • Vin Sidious

    Based on whatever whimsical criteria WWE is using to determine HoF inductees, Owen Hart absolutely deserves to be in there, with no consideration given to his tragic death. There are alread plenty of guys in the HoF who were lesser stars than Owen. The fact is that the pool of potential inductees has already run very thin for WWE, and every true, indisputable Hof'er who is no longer actively wrestling has been inducted with just a few notable, controversial execeptions: Savage, Sammartino, Owen Hart, Ultimate Warrior. Compared to the HoF selection process for the "real" sports, WWE's HoF is a joke.

    • peter

      .I do not agree with you that the inductees have ran very thin,I think that they haven't even scratched the surface yet, what about The Hart Foundation,Demolition,The British Bulldogs,Ravishing Rick Rude,Brutus the Barber Beefcake,Trish Stratus,Lita,I would even love to see The Bushwackers or Hillbilly Jim,each one made the WWE what it is today.

  • Tim

    I was just watching the attitude era DVD and remembered. That the rock was so great. Key word was, now he tries too hard to make people think he never left. Which comes off bad. Yea people are excited he’s half ass back. But those are the people who don’t think.

  • Jay

    The only thing i wanna know is when Dolph is gonna cash in???

    • Dave

      My best guess is Dolph will cash it in at the Elimination Chamber. It's a time the champ will be vulnerable. Perhaps we'll get Cena vs Dolph for World Title at Wrestlemania.

  • megan

    he could lose it to ryback tonight im looking forward to that match actually It will be awesome

    • G1

      He's not fighting Ryback tonight. That was scheduled for next week. The FIRST Raw of the new year. Today is New Years EVE

  • Dave

    I disagree with your take on Wade Barret, now as IC champ he is posed to have a big 2013, and I predict he wins the World title next year. He has all the tools to be a main eventer.