Last Friday, we learned an unexpected forbidden door was opening. Chris Jericho is set to appear on WWE Network/Peacock during WrestleMania weekend. He won’t be on a wrestling show, but sitting down with Steve Austin for a Broken Skull Sessions interview is still more than many of us expected to ever see an AEW-contracted wrestler do on a WWE program.
Among those who were surprised by the announcement, you can include wrestling most famous expat, CM Punk. TMZ Sports caught up with the Chicagoan and got his thoughts:
“It’s interesting, for sure. Obviously, I understand the buzz. Maybe I’ll give it a shot and watch it, but it feels like it’s going to be softball questions. I don’t know if they’re going to ask Jericho all the tough questions and nor do I think that they possibly should. It’s an interesting situation and it’ll probably be a feel good interview where they talk about Jericho’s past at WWE. I’m sure they’ll mention AEW, but they won’t get into the hard questions that I think people are interested in.
Honestly, my knee-jerk reaction and opinion is that I think it shows Vince McMahon isn’t afraid of AEW at all. If he was, he wouldn’t allow that to happen. Anytime anybody is talking about you, it is good. There will be people that don’t know AEW exists who will watch it and say, ‘Cool, I didn’t know that. I just thought Jericho was retired.’ There is also something to be said about keeping your guys special and the only place you can see this superstar is on my television show, but it’s a new age and both companies need all the eyeballs they can get at the moment.”
Punk echoes others’ thoughts about the nature of the interview, predicting they’ll talk about Jericho’s current home just enough so they can say they didn’t avoid it, but mostly stick to his history in WWE.
As to what the former WWE Backstage commentator has to say about how the Chairman views Tony Khan’s company... I think there’s something to that. AEW’s been around for two years and hasn’t hurt WWE’s business in any noticeable way, certainly not their bottom line. I don’t think this means Vince will suddenly adopt a “rising tide lifts all boats” approach to his biggest competitor. But then I didn’t expect to see Y2J on WWE’s timeline last week either.
You can check out the whole brief interview, where Punk also continues to play coy about returning to scripted or unscripted combat sports, here.