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ROYAL RUMBLE RESULT: Rock wins first WWE Title in 10 years, Punk's title reign is over - how did it happen?

Jan 27, 2013 - 10:25:22 PM
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By James Caldwell, PWTorch assistant editor

Rock_Wide_GG_26.png



WWE part-time star "The Rock" Dwayne Johnson captured the WWE Title from C.M. Punk in the main event of the Royal Rumble PPV Sunday night. Now, Rock and Royal Rumble winner John Cena are on a collision course at WrestleMania.

Rock won his first WWE Title since 2002. At the time, Rock dropped the WWE Title to Brock Lesnar at Summerslam in August 2002 when Lesnar was, coincidentally, managed by Paul Heyman.

For Punk, it's the end of a 434-day title reign that started at the Survivor Series PPV in November 2011.

Punk nearly walked out of Phoenix with the title, but the match was re-started after The Shield allegedly helped Punk retain the WWE Title.

The first finish was set up by Rock going for the People's Elbow, but the lights went out, chaos ensued, Rock was powerbombed through a table, and the announcers blamed The Shield. Punk then pinned Rock to temporarily retain the WWE Title.

After the finish, Mr. McMahon came out and concluded that Shield helped Punk retain, which violated his decree that if Shield got involved in the match, then Punk would be stripped of the WWE Title. Before McMahon could strip Punk of the title, Rock spoke up that he wanted the match re-started. McMahon agreed.

During the re-start, Rock won with the People's Elbow, which was a fitting conclusion based on the pre-match storyline of Rock fighting "for the people" and Punk saying the people don't matter.

Punk does have a guaranteed WWE Title re-match, which could occur at the Elimination Chamber PPV in February or at WrestleMania if Punk is inserted into Rock-Cena at Mania.

[Torch art credit Grant Gould (c) PWTorch.com]


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