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   September 02, 2014



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Guest column: If Punk's gone from WWE, where does it leave us fans?
By JEFF GOODRIDGE - For SLAM! Wrestling


Was the Royal Rumble on Sunday -- when he was the first entrant -- the last we'll see of CM Punk in WWE? Photo by Mike Mastrandrea

What a week it's been... and we're only at Wednesday. For those of you who haven't been paying attention or who haven't taken the time to read the 'dirt sheets' online, CM Punk more or less walked away from World Wrestling Entertainment on Monday afternoon.

F4WOnline.com's Dave Meltzer wrote: "C.M. Punk reportedly told Vince McMahon last night that he was going home, and did so. That's where things stand right now. At this point, he's off everything going forward."

Now, considering this isn't the first time this has happened with Punk and certainly NOT the first time this has happened with WWE as a whole, it leads to a few different opinions of where we're heading with Wrestlemania only some 60 days away.

Punk has been removed from all upcoming live events. It's understood by the company that he's being removed from immediate future plans and there is nothing going forward with him. Mike Johnson of PWInsider had this to say:

"The belief among those who are willing to talk about the situation is that Punk is no longer factored into company plans. Punk is under contract to WWE through July.

It is believed that when Vince McMahon had the writers re-write Raw late yesterday (6 PM for a taping that was scheduled to start at 7:45 PM), it was because Punk had informed the company he was going home and wouldn't be back.

While we cannot 100% confirm why, the belief among wrestlers backstage is that Punk leaving was not an injury issue. It was described to us as more likely a case of burnout and unhappiness with the overall direction of the company. Punk had been very vocal in the past about the usage of returning and "part time" stars being pushed beyond wrestlers who were working full-time for the company."
The issue is, where does that leave us fans?

Well, on one side I can definitely see the company's agenda. They have a HUGE gamble on the horizon with The WWE Network and it cannot fail. They have so much riding on it, a failure at this point would be horrendous, as well as what it might to do the stock value -- or have you not noticed the jump that it has made over the last few weeks? It's going large and holding... That matters to the company and its stockholders.


The brass feels older established stars coming in to work now will bolster the network offering, with older fans coming back to see the stars they loved in the days before HD and three-hour Monday Night Raws. Batista is a guaranteed good deal in the eyes of the company, with two movies on the horizon, one of which is a MARVEL Comics movie based on Guardians of the Galaxy. They can put him in their own features after the fact and this is a solid move for both sides.

That being said, I can also see Punk's side of things. As someone that has spent some time on the independent circuit, I understand why someone like Punk would be upset by "names" coming in and squashing the incumbents and the guys that are working their tails off day in and day out. The Royal Rumble was pure proof of that, with a crowd reminiscent of the old ECW days burying not only Batista but also the championship match. Part-timers can be used correctly, and usually that's by putting over the guys that are having a hard time getting there or by solidifying a guy that's already over and keeping him there.

There is also a steady online belief that this whole thing is a work, including the Daniel Bryan "burial" that Triple H seems to have going on.

So, in any of the three cases, where does this leave Wrestlemania? In the air.

It's more or less guaranteed we're going to see Brock Lesnar and the Undertaker have one more match, and I don't personally know how badly I care to see that. Done correctly, it could be incredible. Done incorrectly, Undertaker could end up in the hospital.

Will we see Punk or Bryan in a situation that's favourable? No one seems to know... and at this point, no one seems to know if Punk will even be there.

That is, except for CM Punk.

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  • Previous Guest Columns

    Jeff Goodridge is a former commentator for Alpha-1 Wrestling as well as CWI and has worked in the independent wrestling sector for four years. His opinions are his own and are usually not shared by anyone.