Tony Khan announced he was terminating CM Punk’s AEW contracts at 4:33pm ET on Sept. 2. Speculation about Punk’s future — and specifically the possibility he could return to WWE — started at approximately 4:34.
Or we should probably say “re-started”, as a reunion between Punk and the company he walked away from, was fired by, and (indirectly) fought with in court seemed possible at times during Punk’s Sept. 2022 - June 2023 injury rehab/post-Brawl Out hiatus from AEW.
But now that he’s truly a free agent (or will be in about another month), the chatter’s grown louder. The volume’s been turned up the past couple weeks as fans have noticed Punk-related phrases like “best in the world” popping up during Seth Rollins’ segments on Raw.
Regarding C.M. Punk, there is obviously tons of talk regarding him returning. There have been rumors that it’s happening, but those in WWE have only said that no deal is completed and those close to Punk have told us that it is his intention to return and the two sides are in talks.
Dave Meltzer goes on to mention Survivor Series in Punk’s beloved Chicago as a likely time & place for his return, should a deal happen.
Which is interesting and oft-suggested. The key takeaways, however, are that Meltzer’s Punk sources (whoever those might be considering the contentious nature of the Punk/Observer relationship) tell him Punk intends to be a WWE Superstar again for the first time since Jan. 2014, and that WWE sources aren’t denying that talks are happening.
The first thing isn’t too surprising. In addition to signs late last year & early this year that Punk was flirting with the idea of returning to WWE, almost everything he’s done in his combat sports career has been about performing on the biggest stages possible. If he wants to continue wrestling, with the AEW door closed WWE is pretty much his only option.
Which means it will be very interesting to see what shape a CM Punk/WWE contract takes in 2023, and how that impacts his booking on Raw, SmackDown &