By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
CM Punk spoke with ESPN’s Marc Raimondi. The following are the highlights of the interview that can be read in full at ESPN.com.
-On working with Hangman Page after Page went off-script in a promo: “And I proceed to have what I think is a garbage match because I’m trying to protect myself on stuff instead of actually just working and trying to put on the best performance I can. I’m keeping an eye out. He chopped me in the mouth one time, and I’m just like, ‘OK, did you do that on purpose?’ You chip my tooth, and I’m like, ‘All right, should I give him a receipt?’ It changes the dynamic. It poisoned everything for me, and it made it all really, really ugly, and that was what set all of this off, and here we are over a year later and ain’t shit been done about it.”
-Punk also spoke about apologizing to Tony Khan for his comments at the All Out press conference: “The first thing I said to Tony when I sat down with him and spoke to him after it was, ‘Man, I’m really sorry I put you in that position.’ I apologize for the scrum. But when you’ve watched that scrum, you’re looking at a very, very frustrated guy who had told people. That’s not the first time he heard all that. It’s not the first time lawyers were told all that. And I was just looking for something to be done and nothing got done. So, if you want something done right, you got to do it yourself. And I just didn’t approach it in the right manner, but tension was high. I was very, very pissed. I pretty much knew that I had just injured myself again. I was hurt, and I was disappointed. Yeah, it’s very easy for me to say I regret that and I handled it the wrong way, 100 percent.”
-Punk also comment on the Brawl Out incident: “I don’t think what happened was a big deal… This has happened in the last 10 months in hockey, in basketball, in baseball, in just about every sport. And it’s covered and it’s gone the next day. I think because I have injured my tricep and I’ve been out for so long, I think it has been exacerbated. I think it’s been exacerbated by people spreading lies about the whole thing. And when, in reality, my attitude is, well, shit happens.”
-Punk took issue with feeling as though he has been portrayed as the villain of the incident: “Now we all got to roll in the f—ing mud, and that never should have happened and has never been course-corrected. So, I understand people want to say that, ‘Oh, man, Punk is a dick.’ Well yeah, because I’m defending myself and I will always defend myself. I’m open to have a full-blown f—ing sit-down powwow discussion with everybody about it. But it hasn’t happened yet, and it’s not because of my lack of trying.”
Powell’s POV: Punk also described his relationship with Tony Khan as “great” during the interview. There’s been a lot of talk leading up to the interview that it was going to cause more turmoil within AEW. Perhaps it will, but I don’t find Punk’s comments to be all that scathing. He also stated that he has attempted to reach out to Kenny Omega, Matt Jackson, and Nick Jackson and has received letters from lawyers telling him not to contact the individuals. While Omega and the Jacksons surely have their reasons, it does seem silly to me that the parties involved in the Brawl Out incident can’t sit down and at least try to talk through their differences. Punk had more to say about being the featured talent on AEW Collision, his return promo that is advertised for Saturday night’s premiere edition, and more in the full interview.