Vintage Vault “Pre-Viewing of Punk”: Armageddon 2007

CM Punk and Kane vs. Mark Henry and Big Daddy V (w/ Matt Striker)

We come to the final PPV of 2007 and it has been a rollercoaster of a year for Punk as he started fairly strong with a great performance in the Rumble as well as the Money in the Bank match at WM, and he would be part of the New Breed angle before basically becoming the top dog of ECW. Despite a three-month stretch against John Morrison that saw him basically choke in all three PPV matches only to win the title on TV, he would recover with a series of solid title defenses on PPV and has remained one of the most over guys on the roster. But by this point, it seems like he has run out of challengers as he was thrown into this feud by helping Kane against Henry and V, which didn’t make much sense as you’d figured V might get a title shot here after his performance at Survivor Series. Nonetheless, you knew that Punk would work his ass off in this match though you also had to wonder how much longer he would last as champion as we head into 2008.

On the 11/20 ECW, Punk defeated Kenny Dykstra in a non-title match and later that night, Kane defeated V and Striker in a handicap match only to be beaten down, and on the 11/23 Smackdown Kane defeated V by DQ and assaulted him with a chair. On the 11/27 ECW, V defeated Kane in an Extreme Rules match when Henry got involved and the two men would put Kane through a table, and on the 12/6 ECW Henry won a coin toss to face Punk for the title which Punk won by DQ only to be beaten down by Henry and V. On the 12/11 ECW, this match was announced as Punk and Kane defeated Deuce and Domino in a tag match, and on the 12/14 ECW Henry and V would lose a handicap match to the Undertaker. Again, it was pretty weird that Punk wouldn’t defend the title against either V or Henry and was stuck in a tag match here, and it really seems like here that his title reign was running on fumes.

Kane and Punk get a good pop from the crowd while Henry and V had solid heat as heels. Punk starts off the match with Henry and they lock up with Henry shoving Punk to the mat as Punk avoids Henry and kicks at his leg repeatedly, and he goes for the leg only for Henry to toss him to the mat and Punk hits a drop toehold that sends Henry into the corner. He pounds on Henry and rams the knee into him repeatedly as Kane tags in and he stomps on Henry in the corner, and he continues to pound on Henry and grabs the leg only for Henry to pound on him though Kane catches him with a dropkick to the knee. He pounds on Henry and tags Punk who hits a dropkick on Henry in the corner only for Henry to reverse a whip and he hits a clothesline, and he pounds on Punk and kicks at him before tagging V who continues to pound on Punk in the corner. Punk avoids a shot and pounds on V who hits a clothesline on Punk and he tosses him to the outside, and Striker kicks at Punk who gets on the apron and V hits a hiptoss back into the ring before hitting a press slam on Punk. Henry tags in and he stomps on Punk before stepping on his chest and he chokes him on the mat for a two count, and he pounds on Punk in the corner and hits a headbutt before stomping on him and he chokes him with his boot. He continues to choke Punk in the corner and pounds on him before shoving him into the corner only to miss a charge, and Kane gets the hot tag and he fires up on Henry in the corner before splashing him twice and he hits a big boot. He goes up top and hits a flying clothesline on Henry as he gets a shot in on V and grabs at Henry who rams him into the corner, and V tags in as Kane battles back on both men and he grabs V by the throat only for V to break the grip. He grabs Kane by the throat and hits a sitdown chokebomb for a two count as Punk breaks the pin up, and V steps on Kane’s back and hits a short clothesline before hitting a big splash as he rides Kane on the mat and pounds on him. Henry tags in as V splashes Kane in the corner and Henry hooks a bearhug on Kane who fights to his corner, but Henry rams Kane into the other corner and tags V as he splashes Kane in the corner and V pounds on Kane. Kane tries to battle back and hits a big boot only for V to hit a clothesline and he tags Henry as Kane again tries to battle back, and Henry gets a kick in only for Kane to catch him ducking with a DDT and Punk gets the hot tag. He hits a trio of flying forearms on V and kicks at his leg repeatedly before hitting a pair of running knees in the corner, and V shoves him off of a bulldog attempt only for Punk to hit a standing enzurgiri and he kicks V in the head. Henry comes in and Punk kicks at him as Kane comes in and they pound on Henry before hitting a double clothesline which sends Henry over the top to the floor, and Punk goes out to the apron as Striker gets on the apron and Punk kicks him to the floor only for V to catch him on a springboard and he hits the Samoan drop which gets the three and he wins the match for his team.

The match itself was pretty good as both teams worked hard and put on a pretty solid, yet basic tag match. Henry and V looked pretty cool as a dominant heel tag team and they did what they do best as they beat down Kane and Punk who also looked pretty good as a team, and they had good chemistry as they don’t go too long at just over 10 minutes though did manage to get two heat segments in for the match. As I have mentioned before, it seems pretty clear that Punk’s title reign is on fumes as he doesn’t get a title match here and is stuck in a tag match, and perhaps just as bad is that he’s the one that eats the pin as it still seems like V is going to be the next big heel for ECW going into the new year. Given how good he looked the last two months, it would’ve been a good reward for V who has gotten over as a monster since coming to ECW in the draft and completely overhauling his character, and we can only wait to see if they keep it going into 2008 and if he is the one that finally ends Punk’s reign as champion. The crowd was into the match and Kane and Punk, but are not happy when Henry and V get the win. Henry and V get the win over Punk and Kane as both teams move on.

Final Grade: **1/2