By Ryan Clark on January 30, 2014
For those who don’t check back in daily to the website, here are the very latest updates on CM Punk quitting WWE backstage at RAW this past Monday. We know some of you guys check back in daily but many others do not and fall behind. This is the reason we post numerous updates on big stories from time to time. With that being said, here are the latest updates on the CM Punk situation:
UPDATE x 15: Here is a video of Steve Austin talking about CM Punk quitting WWE:
UPDATE x 14: Fans at Thursday night’s WWE NXT tapings at Full Sail University in Winter Park, Florida were reportedly chanting for CM Punk throughout the show.
Also, CM Punk signs were being confiscated by security at the taping. At one point, fans were asked to chant “NXT” to the opening of a TV episode. Instead, there was a sizable Punk chant from the fans. As you can imagine, this don’t go over well with WWE officials. Triple H, who is said to be extremely upset over the CM Punk situation and feels disrespected, was backstage at the show as he always is. As noted earlier, Vince McMahon is now dealing with the CM Punk issues.
UPDATE x 13: Jim Ross has posted a new blog, discussing the CM Punk/WWE situation. Here is what he posted…
The news of the day surrounds the talented CM Punk unexpectedly walking away from WWE.
Was it really unexpected? Likely not. Punk has not been a happy camper within WWE for quite some time. That point has been made abundantly clear on many occasions. He’s tired, he’s beat up, and he’s not enjoying himself at work.
Before everyone analyzes this matter to death, let’s break it down into a few basic points some of which I can speak on from experience as the former head of talent relations for WWE.
Matters such as this generally concern one or both of the Two C’s….cash and/or creative.
Punk is mentally and physically burned out and he’s not having enough professional fulfillment to work through his issues. He needs a break.
All talents are wired differently which is why they all cannot be managed the same or even treated the same in many instances.
Recognizing when a talent is getting frayed around the edges is management’s job. Once the problem is identified it is incumbent upon everyone involved in the equation to work together to solve the problem through compromise and respect but most of all communication.
If the talent or the company is unwilling to compromise, then, most likely the problem won’t be solved and, therefore, if a problem can’t be solved there’s only one other option to put in play and that is to eliminate the problem.
Punk is a very cerebral talent who has earned his stripes the hard way and has more than paid his dues. He’s earned super star status via having numerous, main event classic bouts in WWE rings on huge stages. Coming to WWE was the greatest thing Punk could have done for himself professionally. He’s become globally famous and has made a handsome amount of money thanks to the WWE machine.
The opportunities that WWE have provided Punk and then Punk maximizing those minutes and opportunities is what the synergy between a talent and a company should resemble.
I do not think that Punk has wrestled his last match in WWE. I do feel that it’s best for all involved for Punk to take much needed time off even if it means that he misses a WrestleMania.
Some of the biggest ‘hurt’ that I’ve ever encountered professionally was not being a part of a handful of WrestleMania events. However, over time, I got over those moments even though at the time I was not in a “get over it” frame of mind. Some day Punk ‘might’ regret missing WM30, if he indeed does miss it, but today…not so much.
Time heals many things. Punk needs to go home and chill. Get healthy both mentally and physically and continue to communicate with WWE.
Punk has much to offer WWE and visa versa. Punk never has a stinker of a match and has built a magnificent brand while in WWE. On the other hand, WWE has utilized Punk in a variety of ways and each time, no matter the creative, Punk seemed to thrive.
It’s been a great partnership in many ways. However, no one is saying that all great partnerships are always hearts and flowers. They rarely are.
I can name many great talents that I’ve personally worked with in WCW and WWE that were not always the easiest to work with but at the end of the day the business relationship, more often than not, became a win-win situation if both side maintained some level of honest communication.
One thing is for sure, when one door apparently closes, even if it’s short term, another door opens for another talent to walk through and make a difference.
No, I don’t think this is an elaborate, TV storyline but instead it’s all about a highly motivated, talented wrestler who, at times, feeds off the chip on his shoulder, which is not a bad thing, who has hit the wall and isn’t enjoying what once was his primary professional focus….dare say his life.
CM Punk has been good for WWE. WWE has been good for CM Punk. I’m hopeful that they will resolve their issues and be good together once again in the future. Hopefully, the lines of communications, to whatever degree that can be maintained will remain open. If so, then this matter has a much better chance of being rectified.
UPDATE x 12: Here is last night’s special edition of #WZRtv featuring the entire story behind CM Punk quitting WWE backstage at RAW on Monday as well as what happened between Matt Hardy and Reby Sky on New Year’s Day which led to their arrests. Matt Boone and Ryan Clark give the latest breaking updates on both stories on Wednesday night’s special breaking edition of WZRtv. You can watch the show below:
UPDATE x 11: FOX Sports spoke with Rener Gracie, who trains CM Punk in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, about Punk leaving WWE and possibly going into MMA.
He said: “With the little time he’s had with me spread out over so many years, he’s made remarkable progress. There’s no telling how successful he would be if he devoted himself full time to the training.”
He added that Punk was a sponge at learning BJJ and “would have no limit. He has the intangibles.”
Punk is still listed for a VIP AXXESS signing during WrestleMania weekend as of right now. You’re going to see a lot of advertisements involving CM Punk and WWE as these are made months in advance.
Colt Cabana tweeted the following remark on Twitter, responding to all of the questions he’s received:
Just DM me your Punk questions
— Colt Cabana (@ColtCabana) January 30, 2014
UPDATE x 10: Casey Kulas of ESPN Cleveland and the Q said yesterday (see below) that he was backstage at RAW this week and overheard CM Punk , AJ Lee and Paul Heyman arguing with backstage officials about a concussion Punk may have suffered. We have now confirmed that the story is not true.
We can also report that while Punk was banged up during the Rumble match, he passed all of his WWE medical exams following the event and his concussion status had nothing to do with him leaving WWE.
UPDATE x 9: WWE is now advertising Sheamus as CM Punk’s replacements for the weekend live events in Wichita, Kansas on Saturday and in Kansas City, Mo. on Sunday.
UPDATE x 8: The latest on the CM Punk leaving WWE situation is that Punk was reportedly not happy about the idea of facing Triple H at WrestleMania. The reason is that Punk did not feel that Triple H was his idea of a big match/feud at WrestleMania.
Prior to his exit from WWE on Monday, creative plans called for CM Punk to face Kane at Elimination Chamber. This was all part of the bigger plan of Punk feuding with the Authority and leading to Punk vs. Triple H at WrestleMania. The general feeling is that Punk was turned off by the plans.
At this time, it’s being said that Vince McMahon wants Punk back, while Triple H has mixed feelings on the idea. Triple H feels that Punk walking out at the last minute on Monday was extremely disrespectful. Vince McMahon is now handling the situation.
We’ll keep you posted as we hear more.
UPDATE x 7: Despite the fact that CM Punk is still included in the advertisements for WWE’s “Elimination Chamber” pay-per-view, and may continue to appear on some official WWE advertisements for upcoming live events in the future, the word within the company is that those will eventually be pulled. The advertisements are made well in advance and they take some time to change from market to market.
In the past week, two different key people within WWE with knowledge of Punk’s situation, have noted that he was “as good as gone” from the company once his WWE deal expired in July. He had been very vocal about it and flat out told people he was leaving. Many people shrugged it off as they hear it time and time again from talents and they always wind up coming back. One person even claimed that Punk wouldn’t even last until the duration of his contract.
As far as the meeting between Punk and Vince McMahon backstage at RAW on Monday before he ultimately left and went home, one source noted that the meeting didn’t even take place until approximately 7:30pm. Following the “heated exchange” between the two, Punk walked out of the building.
The reason the Kofi Kingston vs. Alberto Del Rio match went so long this past Monday night on RAW was because it took place during the period that Punk was originally scheduled to have a segment, and because he left, the two had to have their match go a second segment to cover the time.
Apparently there has been a working assumption within WWE creative for multiple weeks now that Punk was going to be leaving when his contract expired in July, and that he would not be signing a new deal at that time.
As things stand right now, Sheamus is scheduled to replace Punk on the bookings he had advertised for the SmackDown television tapings. Daniel Bryan is also expected to replace CM Punk against Triple H at WrestleMania 30 as reported earlier here on the website.
UPDATE x 6: Here is a video of CM Punk’s Q&A session at the Wizard World Comic Con in Portland, OR this past weekend. This is the Q&A session that we’ve been posting about where he appears frustrated with WWE:
UPDATE x 5: As previously reported, CM Punk held a Q&A session at the Wizard World “Portland Comic Con” event on Friday. Since the news broke that CM Punk has quit WWE, several fans who were in attendance sent in their recaps of Punk’s Q&A. Here are the highlights:
– Punk said he doesn’t think Sting should come to WWE because he doesn’t have “anything left in the tank.” He thinks Sting would take another spot away from WWE’s younger superstars who are trying to make it to the main event level.
– Punk said Batista is his friend, but he doesn’t feel the time is right for him to return, for the same reason Sting shouldn’t be brought in. Punk said it’s Daniel Bryan’s time and Bryan should be in the main event of WrestleMania.
– He has been frustrated with WWE’s direction for a while and feels that the writers aren’t in touch with what fans want.
– He has been saving a lot of money and he would be fine if he wasn’t receiving a paycheck from WWE anymore.
– He’s entertained the idea of fighting for UFC, but he doesn’t know if his body could handle it at this time.
– Punk said his health has been bad for months, especially September through November of last year. He’s had weekly MRI’s and blood work done, but doctors can’t figure out what’s wrong. He started eating meat again and is starting to feel better, but isn’t close to 100%.
UPDATE x 4: ESPN Cleveland reporter Casy Kulas reports that there may be some concussion issues that came into play during CM Punk’s argument with WWE officials on Monday. Kulas posted to Twitter:
My info on CM Punk: I do know from sources that at #Raw in CLE there was heated exchange backstage between Punk & staff. Topic – concussion.
— Casey Kulas (@CaseyKulas) January 29, 2014
Punk was heard arguing with staff saying “I passed all your damn concussion test” and “I’m not going out and telling fans that BS”
— Casey Kulas (@CaseyKulas) January 29, 2014
UPDATE x 3: As previously reported, WWE RAW was re-written a number of times this past Monday night. According to sources, the RAW script for Monday was re-written at least 10 or 11 times in the afternoon and evening alone.
The report claims the last re-write came at approximately 6pm after Vince McMahon and CM Punk had the meeting that led to Punk’s departure from the company. CM Punk walked out of the building after a “heated exchange” with Vince McMahon and several other WWE officials.
UPDATE x 2: WWE has stopped following CM Punk on Twitter. The WWE account still follows discarded characters (like Dr. Shelby) and WWE NXT talents who have since been released. Any tweets from followers show up on WWE.com so it’s likely they don’t want Punk’s tweets showing up on the company website.
In regards to the TMZ report, which cited that Batista was the reason Punk walked out, WWE sources have stated that Punk’s decision has nothing to do with Batista personally and it was not him that caused Punk’s departure. Word is that it was a collection of issues including burnout, injuries, a difference in what the company saw as a big push for Punk and what he felt was one (the proposed WM 30 match with Triple H) as well as an overall frustration with how he was perceived by the company.
For those who have honestly asked, this is NOT a “work” by any means. Those of you who follow this website on a daily basis have seen numerous reports over the last year or so stating that CM Punk has been frustrated for quite some time now. This is not something that happened overnight. It’s a case of things building up over the past year or so and Punk finally threw up his hands and said “enough is enough.” WWE Diva Kaitlyn pretty much did the same thing about a month ago.
UPDATE: Pauley sent this in: I was at Punk’s Portland Comic Con and I didn’t feel the need to relay the information until he departed from WWE. There are two key parts of his Q&A that stand out in retrospect.
1. He was very upset about Batista getting the WrestleMania main event, which pretty much spoiled the Royal Rumble. He clarified he was friends with “Dave” and that “they” would not be happy, but he wanted to be honest and it was Daniel Bryan’s year. Actually, he said Bryan Danielson but corrected quickly.
2. He was very disinterested in the current product. Asked about promos he defeatedly made comments like “I show up. Someone tells me what to do and I just go out do it and leave.” He implied his recent work was not good and was down to only using two moves a match.
Punk was very nice, engaged, and happy with his fans but in regards to wrestling and WWE he was definitely despondent and unhappy.
— TMZSports.com also seems to confirm this report with the following post:
WWE superstar CM Punk is QUITTING the organization, TMZ Sports has learned … and sources tell us it’s all because he’s PISSED over the way the company wants to use him at “WrestleMania.”
Sources close to the situation tell TMZ Sports … Punk was livid when he learned officials scripted Batista to win the Royal Rumble … because he feels Batista isn’t in great wrestling shape and shouldn’t be featured in the title match at the upcoming WrestleMania (the biggest event of the year).
We’re told Punk feels he earned the right to be in the main event at WrestleMania — because he’s been wrestling tirelessly over the past year from house shows to overseas events. Punk was angry when he found out he’d be wrestling Triple H at WrestleMania instead of squaring off in the title match.
Sources say … Punk — whose contract is up in July — made the decision to leave WWE after “Monday Night Raw” — and we’re told that right now, he’s very serious about his decision and has no plans to return.
ORIGINAL: As noted earlier here on the website, former WWE Champion CM Punk is taking an indefinite hiatus from WWE.
As noted earlier, Punk met with Vince McMahon on Monday before RAW and informed him of his decision to take time off. Punk’s WWE contract expires in July and has been very vocal about the possibility of leaving for good this summer. We’re told that his decision to leave is not due to an injury, but because he is unhappy with the handling of his character and the overall direction of the company. He’s been very vocal about this and has money saved up. His attitude has always been that he’s not afraid to speak up and doesn’t care if he’s fired for doing so.
Punk had been scheduled to wrestle Triple H at WrestleMania, but is no longer expected to work the show and is no longer advertised for any upcoming live events. He’s stated in multiple interviews that his one remaining goal in WWE was to main event WrestleMania. In recent months it became clear that he was not going to be part of the main event this year. He’s also said to be very frustrated with WWE bringing in part-time wrestlers (The Rock, Brock Lesnar, Batista) and giving them main event programs instead of the guys who have been working full-time for years and giving the company everything they have.
We reported on Monday that WWE had completely overhauled the script for this week’s RAW, which was not completed until an hour or two before the show went on the air. The rewrites were partially due to the huge negative reaction to the Royal Rumble pay-per-view, however it was CM Punk’s announcement to management that he was leaving that also caused a lot of the changes.
There are some reports that Punk was scheduled to wrestle Antonio Cesaro on RAW in an Elimination Chamber qualifying match, which would have seen Cesaro defeat Punk with help from Kane. Punk was not backstage at RAW during the night and he was not backstage at Tuesday’s SmackDown tapings. Punk left the building shortly before RAW went live after a meeting with Vince McMahon.
During a recent interview with Ariel Hewani, Punk spoke about working the crazy WWE schedule, and only ever taking time off for injuries. Punk worked over 50-minutes in Sunday’s Royal Rumble match, and was described as being “pissy” backstage. But some have said that this is not unusual for him. He has “good days” and “bad days”.
Another source noted that Punk’s last goal was to work a WrestleMania main event, and that it may be a situation where Punk realized it wasn’t going to happen this year and with his WWE deal expiring and him being so goal oriented, it may have weighed him down when he realized it would not happen.
Also during the Ariel Hewani interview, Punk was asked about WWE killing his momentum at times and why such things happen and stated that he’d like to think they don’t make those decisions on purpose and it’s more they wanted to go in another decision and that it was a different era.
Also, Punk has been working through several nagging injuries over the course of the last year and has overall been very unhappy with the reality that WWE no longer sees him as “the guy.” One source said, “this has been building up for awhile now. It didn’t happen overnight.”
As noted earlier, the plan was to work towards a CM Punk vs. Triple H match at WrestleMania 30, but now it seems as if WWE may slide Daniel Bryan into that slot.
Punk’s last Tweet was from Monday night, and reads as follows…
Thanks for all the support. Keep being you guys, it’s pretty cool.
— Coach (@CMPunk) January 27, 2014
We’ll keep you posted as we hear more.
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