On June 27 of this yr, we can be seven years faraway from CM Punk’s “Pipe Bomb” promo on WWE Raw from Las Vegas.
Punk was defeated Saturday night time at UFC 225 in Chicago and virtually immediately there was a clambering for his return to professional wrestling on Twitter.
I used to be at one level a enormous Punk fan. I needed to see him return after WrestleMania 30.
I liked his “shoot-style” promos with Vince McMahon, Triple H and Kevin Nash in the course of the Summer and Fall of 2011. The followers acquired behind him as a result of he was voicing their frustrations throughout that interval. The principal occasion of WrestleMania that yr was John Cena difficult The Miz for the WWE Championship. The occasion was constructed across the return to the corporate of The Rock and was much less in regards to the title match.
One month later, WWE Extreme Rules was headlined by a triple risk match with Cena, the Miz and John Morrison. Eight days prior to Punk’s notorious promo, WWE Capital Punishment was headlined by Cena and R-Truth. The undercard featured a World Title match pitting Randy Orton versus Christian and Punk in a singles match versus Rey Mysterio. The remainder of the cardboard was suffering from mid-level guys comparable to: Santino Marella, Vladimir Kozlov, Heath Slater, Justin Gabriel, Alex Riley, Ezekiel Jackson, Wade Barrett, Evan Bourne and Jack Swagger.
This was earlier than the WWE Network, the place these exhibits carried a $30-$40 price ticket.
The roster was paper skinny.
The fan base was pissed off with the product and Punk’s feedback embodied every part they needed to say. Punk was an unbiased darling and was rumored to face Triple H at WrestleMania 30 earlier than he walked out the night time after the Royal Rumble 2014.
WWE has since signed the likes of Kevin Owens and Finn Balor in 2014 and had Daniel Bryan already in home. Each was additionally an unbiased darling. WWE signed AJ Styles and Shinsuke Nakamura in early 2016 to additional deepen their expertise pool and consequently fulfill the thirst of the indy crowd.
In 2011, Punk stood out. In 2018, he’s simply one other man.
Punk did maintain the WWE Title for 434 days earlier than he dropped it to the Rock at the 2013 Royal Rumble. AJ Styles has held the title for over 350 days over two title runs and has been pushed as arduous as anybody by the WWE over the previous two years. This may have been the place Punk would have ultimately been positioned. If Punk returned at present, I couldn’t fathom him being positioned larger than Styles and even Owens or Balor for that matter.
They may instantly feud him with Triple H and sure it will create a good tv second and make for some attention-grabbing headlines, however I don’t know the way sustainable it will be. Punk’s love for the business has been gone for over 4 years and regardless of how badly some followers might want to overlook it, it’s a huge deal. Positioning Punk excessive of the present card and even the vast majority of the mid-card would create horrible worker morale. You can talk about Brock Lesnar’s lack of appearances in a calendar yr all you need, some dangers are well worth the reward. It shouldn’t be value it in Punk’s case.
I give him all of the credit score on the earth for getting into the octagon. When he signed with the UFC in December 2014, his title nonetheless carried a lot of weight. After two mismatches within the UFC, that’s not the case. His feuds with The Undertaker, Lesnar and Cena had been nice to see and at the time the very best angles of the present.
However, the roster is a lot deeper now than it was in 2011 and even 2014. It is so deep that guys like Balor and Seth Rollins aren’t even in the principle occasion persistently.
Punk may make some cash on the indy scene, however I don’t suppose it’s one thing he needs or wants fairly frankly.
Chad Dixon (@Dixon23rtr)