John Cena Pays Tribute to His Arch-Nemesis CM Punk for His Iconic Pipe Bomb Moment in WWE

Published 06/28/2021, 7:30 AM EDT


On June 27, 2011, CM Punk came out after John Cena was put through a table in the main event of WWE RAW. What followed after Punk came out changed the course of pro-wrestling forever.

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The segment came to be known as the infamous ‘Pipe Bomb’ promo. Not only did Punk attack John Cena, Vince McMahon, and even the fans, he also name-dropped some major rival promotions, thus breaking the fourth wall for the first time in the PG Era.

Commemorating the 10-year anniversary of the pipe bomb, John Cena took to Instagram and sent a throwback. The picture had Punk sitting on the ramp, delivering the scathing promo.

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CM Punk became tired of WWE’s habit of burying new talents for established veterans. He called out on the hypocrisy of the company as well as John Cena. You can learn more about the promo here.

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What was the aftermath of The Pipe Bomb?

While Punk never fully got to say what he wanted to (his was mic cut off), the segment helped WWE in multiple ways. First and foremost, it catapulted Punk into superstardom.

Then, it added new intensity to the impending John Cena vs CM Punk rivalry, something that would be capitalized for a long time. The PG Era (and WWE) became interesting again.

Every week, fans tuned in to see what Punk had to say. He became the “voice of the voiceless” and arguably reached the level of Hulk Hogan, Steve Austin, and The Rock.

Mainstream media also picked up on the promo, giving it national attention. CM Punk not only won the coveted WWE Championship but held it for a whopping 434-days, the longest in the PG Era.

After gaining some creative control, CM Punk paved the way for new Superstars. It was his plan to introduce The SHIELD in WWE. Each of the members is now a marquee player in pro-wrestling.

The Pipe Bomb promo made its entry into the history books. After 10 years, the promo is equally relevant despite its main players going out of WWE. Even now, whenever a Superstar cuts a realistic promo, it is compared to the pipe bomb.

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However, the Pipe Bomb promo’s main relevance lies in the fact that it predicted the shortcomings of WWE. Whether it’s pushing the wrong stars, shelving talents, or Vince McMahon’s control over WWE, every aspect of Punk’s promo is a reality even now.

ATLANTA, GA – OCTOBER 31: CM Punk attends the WWE Monday Night Raw Supershow Halloween event at the Philips Arena on October 31, 2011, in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Moses Robinson/Getty Images)

In conclusion, the Pipe Bomb has transcended the pages of history and has become both a sermon and a prophecy. Even after John Cena, CM Punk, or Vince McMahon are gone, this promo will live on.

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Angana Roy

1195 articles

Angana Roy is a WWE and AEW author for EssentiallySports, having published more than 800 professional wrestling articles. She is currently pursuing higher studies in English language and literature from the University of Calcutta and has over three years of experience in journalism. As a life-long fan of the sports entertainment brand of pro-wrestling, her work consists of live coverage of weekly shows, PPVs, speculating the future course of storylines and everything in between.

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