Mick Foley once said on an episode of Raw to CM Punk, “Do you want to be a legend, or do you want to be a statistic?”
So, which one is it?
On Aug. 18 at SummerSlam, Punk has the chance to do something that not many people get to do. Punk has the opportunity to defeat one of the largest and scariest men World Wrestling Entertainment has ever seen. That man is Brock Lesnar.
Lesnar has had a very controversial past, but in a good way. He started out with WWE in 2002 with Paul Heyman at his side and he was everything Heyman preached to the WWE Universe–he would be the beast incarnate.
Multiple championships later, he decided to leave WWE and enter the world of real fighting. The UFC took him in open arms and welcomed the giant to MMA. Pure skill and athleticism garnered him much success, as he became the UFC Heavyweight champion after defeating Randy Couture at UFC 91.
He would go on to defeat Frank Mir at UFC 100 and then Shane Carwin at a later PPV before dropping the belt to Cain Veslasquez. Needless to say, Lesnar was a worldwide phenomenon from the get-go in Dana White’s camp.
After his tenure with the UFC, Lesnar returned to the WWE to face John Cena at Extreme Rules. Off and on, he came back to have a feud with Triple H and now moving on to Punk. That leads us to where we are today and in only 15 days, he will have the chance to silence the Voice of the Voiceless.
Punk’s history is quite different and not as successful. He began wrestling in backyards just like many professional wrestlers before him. It wasn’t easy. Blood was spilled, tears were shed, bones were broken and skin was ripped away from the body.
Phil Brooks went through hell and back to just make it in the WWE in 2006. Prior to that, he had some of the best matches in his career and in the history of wrestling at Ring of Honor with guys like Daniel Bryan, Samoa Joe and Colt Cabana.
He didn’t have the 283 pound stature Lesnar has, but his heart was much bigger. Remember this, Lesnar was a Division-I wrestler at Minnesota and played in the NFL for one year. His track record was astronomically larger.
Punk had a few supporters when he reached the WWE and that was Heyman. For five years it was a push for Punk, then a huge drop down the roster ladder. Another opportunity would arise and Punk would be on top for a little bit, but then Orton would punt kick him in the head, causing him to drop the World title at Unforgiven.
Remember that night, Punk fans? I do too.
Then one magical night occurred on July 17, 2011. It will be a day that will live famously through the minds of wrestling fans everywhere. He won the WWE championship for the first time and never looked back from there.
To this day, he has one of the longest WWE title reigns in history at 424 days (bonus points for whoever can name the men in front of him without cheating).
A crushing defeat at WrestleMania to the Undertaker switched the career path of Punk and returning from injury six weeks later to enter a feud with Paul Heyman and his beast is the current state of mind for the WWE’s big summer angle.
The match takes place in 15 days. A beast incarnate known only to the wrestling fans will take on quite possibly the best wrestler in the world. It will be a match to remember, but who will prevail?
Here’s a quick tale of the tape:
CM Punk: Heart, determination, wrestling ability, intelligence and opportunistic
Brock Lesnar: Size, strength, brute force and immovable.
You have 15 days to decide your prediction.
The Best vs. the Beast.