While it was recently announced that current WWE SuperstarBrock Lesnar would be competing atUFC 200 against Mark Hunt, fans of both professional Wrestling and MMA finally received an answer about CM Punk's UFC debut. Punk (real name Phillip Brooks) is likely to face Mickey Gall atUFC 202 in August.

Regardless of how well Punk does in UFC, he will forever be considered one of the greatest wrestlers in the history of WWE. He had some especially big moments related to Money in the Bank contracts and events.WWE Money in the Bank 2016 is less than 3 weeks away, and Punk retains one of the most storied MITBrésumés in WWE history.

What follows is one part ina series of Money in the Bank Historyarticles, in which we take a look at a current or former WWE Superstar's past(such asJohn Cena,Randy Ortonand The Shield) at MITB,and what their past experiences might tell us about that same (or a similar) competitor atWWE MITB2016 on June 19.

MITB ladder matches

CM Punk competed in three consecutive Money in the Bank Ladder Matches beginningWrestleMania 23. At the time, the WWE roster was split into three brands (Raw, SmackDown and ECW) and the MITB contract was good for any title the contractor-holder would choose. While Punk came up short atWM23, he grabbed the briefcase the next two years atWrestleMania 24 and25.Four years later, he competed in the so-called All Star MITB Ladder Matchfor a shot at the WWE Championship, but the match was ultimately won by Randy Orton.

Twice, the holders of the MITB contract decided to cash in on Punk while he was the reigning champion. In 2011, Alberto Del Rio cashed in his contract atSummerSlam to take the WWE Championship from CM Punk. In 2012,John Cena cashed in his contract unsuccessfully when Punk lostby DQ.


Reaching the peak of his career around 2011 and 2012, Punk was competing for the WWE Championship atMoney in the Bank those years, not just competing for a contract.

In 2011, Punk took the WWE Championship from John Cena in one of the most memorable PPV WWE events of the last decade. The following year, during his legendary year-long-plus reign as champion, he defeatedDaniel Bryan in an IWC dream match with No DQ.

Worthy competition

Looking strictly at fellow competitors in MITB Contract Ladder Matches, the list is impressive: both Hardys, Edge, Christian, Kane, Booker T, Randy Orton, Chris Jericho,Rob Van Dam, Daniel Bryan and Sheamus.

The first year he won the contract, his opponents included midcard-at-best talent such as Carlito, John Morrison, MVP and Shelton Benjamin. But considering he pinned both John Cena and Daniel Bryan in matches for the WWE Championship, it's safe to say Punk didn't always get to take the easy route when it comes to MITB.

Most memorableMITB moment

While his back-to-back MITB victories in 2008 and 2009 were unprecedented, the most memorable contribution Punk ever made to the storied history ofWWE Money in the Bank was his victory over John Cena at 2011's event. Taking the title from Cena in the main event, Punk "left the company" with the title during his incredible popularity after his "pipe bomb" promo onMonday Night RAW.

The IWC often toutsMITB 2011 as one of the greatest cards in WWE history. WWE is trying to change that this year with "WrestleMania quality" matches like Reigns vs. Rollins and Cena vs. Styles.

Predictions for MITB 2016

While CM Punk has one of the most successful histories when it comes toWWE Money in the Bank, he certainly won't be at this year's event. He'll be busy training for Mark Hunt andUFC 202. However, there's a new guy in town who has been trying to lay some "truth bombs" on the mic recently, and he isn't that much different than CM Punk.AJ Styles is a wrestler who can help fill the void for people who miss CM Punk and Daniel Bryan.

The question is: can AJ Stlyes beat Cena atMITB like Punk did?

My prediction is yes. Styles over Cena.

WWE Money in the Bank2016airs live on the WWE Network on June 19.

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