No matter which way you slice it, it's been one hell of a ride through 2012 for CM Punk, who held the WWE championship throughout the entire year. That's with John Cena on the roster and healthy for all but about six weeks. Impressive indeed.
Let's look back at his run on pay-per-view (PPV) throughout the year:
- Royal Rumble: Punk def. Dolph Ziggler with John Laurinaitis as special guest referee
- Elimination Chamber: Punk def. The Miz, Chris Jericho, Kofi Kingston, Dolph Ziggler, and R-Truth in an Elimination Chamber match
WrestleMania 28: Punk def. Chris Jericho with added stipulation that if he was disqualified in the match, he would still lose the title.
Extreme Rules: Punk def. Chris Jericho in a Chicago Street Fight.
Over the Limit: Punk def. Daniel Bryan
- No Way Out: Punk def. Kane and Daniel Bryan in a Triple Threat match
- Money in the Bank: Punk def. Daniel Bryan in a No Disqualification match with AJ Lee as special guest referee
- SummerSlam: Punk def. Big Show and John Cena in a Triple Threat match
- Night of Champions: Punk vs. Cena declared a draw via simultaneous pinfall
- Hell in a Cell: Punk def. Ryback in a Hell in a Cell match
- Survivor Series: Punk def. Ryback and John Cena in a Triple Threat match
It should be noted that only three of those matches were in the main event, Night of Champions, Hell in a Cell, and Survivor Series. Two of those matches involved Cena and one happened on a night Cena didn't work a match on the show due to injury.
It's clear WWE is comfortable with Punk as its champion having great matches with a variety of wrestlers with differing skill sets and talents but it's also clear he's not trusted to be a big drawing card.
Still, that's a hell of a year for any pro wrestler.