It was the night after the Money in the Bank pay-per-view in Chicago, the same show that saw the crowning of CM Punk as the second biggest star in the company and the culmination of one of WWE's hottest angles in years. He left the arena with the WWE championship just like he said he would and because of that, John Cena was to be fired on Monday Night Raw the very next evening on this date in WWE history (July 18, 2011).
In order to find a way around doing that, as well as usher in Triple H as the new on-screen (and, to a lesser extent, backstage) authority figure, they teased Vince McMahon firing Cena only to be interrupted by Triple H. "The Game," clad in suit and tie as his new corporate self, proceeded to inform Vince that he was relieved of his duties and Trips would be taking over for him, per the Board of Directors.
McMahon, in the performance of a lifetime, mustered up some very real tears and wept openly in the ring while asking his son-in-law "how could you do this to me?"
Triple H, meanwhile, did everything he could to kill the segment with some of the worst acting you will ever see. Granted, he's a pro wrestler and we can only expect so much of him, but this is a guy who reportedly took classes because he wanted to do a few movies.
When he told Vince to look him in the eye so he could say, "I love you, pop," it was perhaps the cheesiest delivery of any one line in the history of one liners. And that's really saying something, folks.
It was too bad, really, because Vince was amazing, perhaps drawing on the real life emotion he must have been feeling at the fact that this wasn't just an on-screen shift but also meant to signal the beginning of the end of his role as the leading man of WWE, as well.
He even turned the fans, who went from booing him one second to giving him a standing ovation and a "Thank you, Vince" chant the next.
Watch McMahon be brilliant and Triple H nearly ruin it: