And so the saga continues.
According to credible source (the Internet), following the Royal Rumble match where CM Punk was this years Iron Man, Punk told Vince McMahon that he was going home. He hasn't been back for either Raw or Smackdown and there has been no word on his return or retirement.
It's easy to imagine Punk being unhappy with the company following his 434 day title reign. Losing to the Rock was the first HUGE nail in the coffin, followed by the hurriedly Undertaker feud (which turned out to be the best match of last year's Westlemania). But since then Punk has struggled to stay on top when the likes of John Cena and Randy Orton and now Batista are basically given the title.
John Cena had a work a few weeks back where he tore Randy Orton apart. It was the closest thing Cena will ever do that will come close to CM Punk's infamous Pipe Bomb. He called out Randy's real life backstage troubles, and how he has been given chance after chance while guys that have earned it like CM Punk and Daniel Bryan get pushed to the side.
Dave Meltzer provided some details on a breaking news edition of Wrestling Observer Radio:
"It's funny that it took so long to come out because he did it right before Raw started. I guess the deal is he told Vince McMahon that he was going home and he went home. And they were not expecting that to happen. People had certainly expected that he was going to leave in July. They could see that it was coming, he was getting burned out, the signs were there. I had heard about it for quite a while that he was theoretically going to leave in July, but I always take that with a grain of salt because you know how many guys say 'I'm retiring' in pro wrestling and then when the day comes they don't. It's hard to walk away because there's so much money.
This issue probably goes back to when Punk first won the title and left after his match with Cena at Money in the Bank. Punk is the kind of guy that isn't afraid to speak his mind and has enough money to walk away from the machine for a while if not indefinitely. The WWE needs him more than he needs it. Is this saying that he will be gone forever, probably not. But this isn't completely unexpected with Punk ever the revolutionary."The thing with him is he's very different from a lot of the guys in the sense that he saved his money, which is a big thing, and he didn't need them, in his mind. I think that most of these guys... because a lot of these guys are frustrated, not all of them but a lot of them, but at the end of the day they don't complain and they're afraid to say anything. I don't want to say he's not afraid to say anything but he spoke his mind more than anyone else and he didn't have a fear of being fired because if he's fired, what's going to happen? He's going to have more free time and he's going to be able to rest up his injuries, and he doesn't have that financial concern...."I have no idea what the straw was that broke the camel's back in the last couple of days other than it happened. But it wasn't one thing, that I can tell you. It's been building up for a year, maybe a little less than a year maybe even more than a year. What I do know obviously is he wanted to be the top guy in the company and as long as John Cena was there it was not going to happen. He went heel when he was a very strong babyface because of the idea that he could be the number one heel. ... Whatever it was, I can't tell you more, I just know that he didn't need it and the guy's that don't need it have a different mentality than the guy's who need it."
Only time will tell what will happen with Punk. Check back with The Machine for any updates on this story as it progresses.