CM Punk addresses all of the backstage issues in AEW, specifically his issues with Colt Cabana and Hangman Page.
When CM Punk returned from his foot injury, he began his first promo by calling out Hangman Page. In the days following his promo, news circulated of issues behind the scenes stemming from Colt Cabana's status with AEW.
CM Punk and Colt Cabana were friends for a long time. CM Punk aired grievances he had during his tenure with WWE on Colt Cabana’s podcast in 2014. Shortly thereafter, both men were sued by WWE doctor Chris Amann. Eventually, they had a falling out and Cabana sued CM Punk in an effort to have his legal fees paid and CM Punk counter-sued.
CM Punk took time to address Scott Colton and their issues as well as all of the rumors that began to circulate in the media during the post-All Out 2022 media scrum.
CM Punk told Nick Hausman of WrestlingInc that it has been nearly a decade since he has had a relationship with Scott Colton and he thinks it's a shame that he has to address this publicly.
“If you fancy yourself a journalist, even if it’s for the silly world of professional wrestling, and you have journalist integrity, people who report things, mostly that are bullshit and slanderous lies against myself, if you are friends with somebody, you blew my spot, if you’re not friends with him, I apologize,” he said. “You should probably disclose who you’re friends with. I haven’t had anything to do with Scott Colton in almost a decade. Probably wanted nothing to do with him even longer than that. It’s fucking unfortunate that I have to come up here and on this when I’m on my time and this is a fucking business.”
“Why I’m a grown-ass adult man and I decide to be friends with somebody is nobody else’s fucking business but my friends, if I fall backwards, will catch me. Scott Colton, I felt, never would have,” CM Punk continued. “My problem was, I wanted to bring a guy with me to the top that didn’t want to see me at the top. You call it jealousy, you call it envy, whatever the fuck it is. my relationship with Scott Colton ended long before I paid all of his bills. I have every receipt. I have every invoice, I have every email. I have an email where he says, ‘I agree to go out separate ways, I will get my own lawyer, you do not have to pay anymore.’ That’s an email that I have. The only reason the public did not see is because, when I finally had to counter-sue him, through discovery, we discovered he shared a bank account with his mother. That’s a fact. As soon as we discovered that fact and we subpoenaed ol' Marcia, he sent the email, ‘Oh, can we please drop all this?’ It’s 2022, I haven’t been friends with this guy since at least 2014, late 2013.”
CM Punk also addressed the Executive Vice Presidents of the company, The Young Bucks (Matt & Nick Jackson) and Kenny Omega, before turning his attention to Hangman Page, and the promo that he cut prior to AEW Double or Nothing 2022, claiming that Hangman went into business for himself and jeopardized the first million-dollar live gate for the company.
Fightful Select reported that the belief among several on the roster we spoke to was that Punk believed Hangman went into business for himself leading into their Double or Nothing match, and that Punk may have seen the August 17 promo as a "receipt.
“The fact that I have to sit up here because we have irresponsible people who call themselves EVPs and couldn’t fucking manage Target, and they spread lies and bullshit and put into a medium that I got somebody fired when I have fuck all to do with him. Want nothing to do with him. Do not care where he works, where he doesn’t work, where he eats, where he sleeps. The fact that I have to get up here and do this in 2022 is fucking embarrassing. If y’all are at fault, fuck you. if you’re not, I apologize. What did I ever do in this world to deserve an empty-headed fucking dumb fuck like Hangman Adam Page to go out on national television and fucking go into business for himself, for what? What did I do? I didn’t do a god damn thing,” said CM Punk.
When Tony Khan tried to intervene and say that he did his best to make the backstage situation clear, CM Punk said that it is not his business to have to make it clear, repeating that the EVPs should have known better because this situation is none of their business.
“It’s not his [Tony Khan’s] position to make it clear,” CM Punk said. “There are people who call themselves EVPs that should’ve fucking known better. This shit is none of their business. I understand sticking up for you fucking friends, I get it. I stuck for that guy more than anybody. I paid his bills, until I didn’t, and it was my decision not to. I’m trying to run a fucking business and when somebody, who hasn’t done a damn thing in this business, jeopardizes the first million dollar house that this company has ever drawn, off of my back, and goes on national television and does that, it’s a disgrace to this industry, it’s a disgrace to this company. We’re far beyond apologies. I gave him a fucking chance. It did not get handled. You saw what I had to do, which is very regrettable, lowering myself to his fucking level. That’s where we’re at right now. I will still walk up and down this hallway and say, ‘if you have a fucking problem with me, take it up with me.’ Let’s fucking go.”
Furthermore, CM Punk reiterated that he tried many different avenues to resolve his issues with Scott Colton but at the end of the day, Colton went ahead with his lawsuit.
“Sorry to keep bringing this up, but I had never spoken a word about it. When it came down that he was going to sue me, I asked to talk to him. He refused. I asked for mediation, it was denied. I offered him money, he said it was not enough. He went ahead with the lawsuit and sued. It’s his fucking funeral, I don’t care. He shares a bank account with his mother, which tells you all you need to know about what kind of character that is.”
Turning his attention back to the EVPs, whom he never addresses by name, CM Punk says that he is doing his best to fill arenas while the EVPs think they are “in Reseda.” Reseda, California was the longtime home of PWG.
“I’ll tell you why I’m upset about it. If you’re an EVP, you don’t try to middle your top babyface. Try to get your niche audience that is on the internet to try and hate him for some made-up, bullshit rumor. Really pisses me off. Stepping on your own dick, trying to fucking make money, sell tickets, fill arenas. These stupid guys think they’re in Reseda,” said Punk.
CM Punk also addressed Hangman Page claiming that he is not one who likes to take advice, rather he is someone who believes in trial and error. CM Punk, a fan of the history of wrestling, believes that it's not very wise to suggest that there is nothing to gain from listening to the advice of the veterans around in the AEW locker room.
“Our locker room, for all the wisdom and brilliance it has, isn’t worth shit when you have an empty-headed idiot, who has never done anything in the business do public interviews and say, ‘I don’t really take advice.’ Who the fuck do you think you are? That’s stupid. I’m on a team with Barry Bonds, Mark McGuire, Sammy Sosa, and I don’t need to work on my swing. I’m not gonna listen to these guys. Fucking go fuck yourself. I dare you to fucking say that to Terry Funk’s face. ‘I don’t need to listen to you Mr. Funk, I know what I’m doing.’ Fucking grow up,” CM Punk said.
CM Punk has once again in a position to be the face of AEW as the World Heavyweight Champion. He won the title for a second time by defeating Jon Moxley at All Out.
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