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Bray Wyatt became WWE World Champion the way he needed to

Monday’s Rude Awakening includes Bray Wyatt’s title win, Elimination Chamber results, and Stone Cold’s Mania Stunners.

We publish a whole lot of content here at Cageside Seats. We’re also [looks around and whispers so the bosses can’t hear] not the only place producing wrestling content on the internet. So, as a service to you on the weekdays, we’ll be producing a wrestling newsletter, "Rude Awakening." Well, it will be a newsletter eventually: for now, it’ll just be part of your experience here at Cageside, collecting the news, recaps, and social moments from the greater wrestling universe daily so you won’t fall behind, with a newsletter format to come.

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Bray Wyatt has long been popular in WWE, but they’ve started and stopped his push to the top so many times that it’s become hard to take his threats seriously. Even if his promos were well-executed and logical, the result was often losing, or a win that changed nothing despite his promises. Now, though, after the main event of Elimination Chamber, Bray is WWE World Champion, and the way he became as much, and the timing of it all, helps make him and his title all the more meaningful.

Bray didn’t just win the WWE World Championship because the gimmick of the Elimination Chamber match allowed him to pick off the weakest competitor at the end. No, Bray survived a John Cena onslaught that included an Attitude Adjustment, then hit Cena with his own finisher, Sister Abigail, to pin the man who entered the match as WWE champ. That by itself would have been significant: Wyatt didn’t cheat to pin Cena, he didn’t get an assist from others that diminished the accomplishment. He just happened to be the one who finally got Cena to stay on the mat for three, and he did it clean, and by doing so guaranteed us a new champ.

Wyatt was left with AJ Styles, who he also pinned clean: that means Wyatt pinned the two most significant stars on SmackDown en route to his first WWE title. And it came at a time when the Wyatts have been reformed not once, but twice: not only is Randy Orton here and seemingly made the Wyatts seem stronger than ever, but Luke Harper was banished from the group for not being strong enough to keep up. Now, at least two of them will likely clash at WrestleMania, and if we’re lucky, Harper will be added to the mix to allow the full version of this story we’re being told to play out. Whether that happens isn’t what matters this morning, though: today, Bray Wyatt is the most fearsome and successful he’s ever been in WWE. And while it might seem late for some, the way he got here helped erase much of the wrongs of the past.

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