According to a May 15 report from The Independent, Daniel Bryan says the WWE only made him heavyweight champion of the world because CM Punk retired. Bryan, 32, did a podcast interview with former WWE superstar Chris Jericho, and he revealed that he felt the WWE scripted him to win the belt at Wrestlemania 30 because there weren't any other legitimate contenders besides John Cena.
Bryan, who will be out for the next couple months due to a neck injury, didn't comment on Punk's retirement. Other wrestlers came out bashing or supporting Punk for his decision to leave the WWE following this year's Royal Rumble, but Bryan opted to refrain from commenting. Bryan makes a good point.
After Punk walked away from the WWE, the promotion didn't have very many options when deciding who the new champion would be. The WWE could have kept Randy Orton as champ, or given the belt to Batista. They also could have scripted Triple H to win the heavyweight championship. However, Bryan was the clear choice to emerge from Wrestlemania 30 as world champion. The fans love him, so WWE Universe got their wish.
As for Punk, he's apparently very happy to be away from the pro wrestling spotlight. Punk hasn't been in communication with anyone from the WWE in months, and he's perfectly content with that. Punk's contract legitimately expires this July, so there's a chance he'll dip into the MMA realm. He could also simply do nothing, as he has made millions of dollars over the years. Punk might be happy spending his days at home for the next few years.
In all likelihood, Punk could retire now and not have to work another day in his life. With Punk away from the WWE spotlight, Bryan is happy to take his place as a fan favorite. The only question now is how long Bryan will remain champ. Bryan is legitimately injured and no one knows if Punk will return to the fold, so the WWE could certainly script someone else to win the championship belt in the meantime.