Having followed the backstage physical altercation at AEW’s All Out, CM Punk’s future in the professional wrestling business is very much in doubt. With reports that AEW is negotiating to buy out his contract, speculation about his return to WWE has begun, but according to Dave Meltzer on the most recent episode of Wrestling Observer Radio, there are people in the company who do not want Punk to join.
There is no verb on who those folks are, but Meltzer stated that they are not part of the creative team, and that the decision to bring Punk back would ultimately be made by Paul Levesque, Stephanie McMahon, & Nick Khan. Of course, the veteran WWE Champion himself would be interested in making a rebound, and it is worth noting that he is currently out with a triceps injury.
Punk is still technically on the AEW roster, and Tony Khan has refused to comment on the former two-time AEW World Heavyweight Champion since All Out. Nevertheless, the internal investigation into the backstage incident is now complete, with Ace Steel released and The Elite set to return to the ring at Full Gear this weekend.
CM Punk‘ Return
Levesque has previously stated that he is not interested in signing CM Punk, but crazier things have happened in the wrestling world. Nevertheless, it has been asserted that Punk has caught the wrestling bug once more, so if he is willing to continue to compete and does end up leaving AEW, a second run with WWE may be something he wishes to pursue.
According to recent reports, he may face CM Punk again, which is one of the major dream matches fans have had for many years, but a lot would need to happen for that to become a reality. Mike Chioda is a familiar face to WWE fans of all ages, having worked as a referee for the company from 1989 until his retirement in April 2020. He has since officiated a few AEW matches. With firsthand experience in both companies, he understands how things work, and he has now shared his thoughts on what he’d do if he were Tony Khan in the CM Punk controversy.
I will not let go of CM Punk because, from a corporate perspective, whether they begin pinning Punk in a year or two or whatever else they do with him, I believe they will take him away from AEW. Chioda stated that bringing Punk back would be a huge draw in TV ratings for WWE. Punk’s AEW contract was reportedly bought out a few weeks ago as a result of the infamous brawl during All Out in September between him, his coach Ace Steel, and The Elite, as well as his subsequent alleged suspension.