CM Punk's arrival to AEW has boosted business in a big way and helped AEW captured momentum leading them to being one of the top shows on cable.
Punk received a hero's welcome when he returned on the August 20 episode of AEW Rampage in Chicago, receiving a pop that only a few in wrestling have been able to experience.
Speaking to Brandon Walker on Rasslin, Punk discussed his pop and how he's become arguably the top star in wrestling with the way he's shifted the business of AEW.
"It's like the kids say, there is levels to this, and you don't know until you ascend to those levels. One of the things I've always hated about the wrestling business is it seems that people -- there are exceptions to the rule, some people are good about it -- there have always been people who have gotten to a certain level and they are almost taught, and the culture is fostered for them to believe that they need to make sure nobody else gets to that level. They don't want anyone to 'steal their spot.' Throwing my name in the hat with someone like Steve Austin, who arguably is the biggest star the business has ever seen. A lot of this is subjective. You can make the argument that Hulk Hogan is a bigger star than Steve Austin. Then you look at business periods and eras and box office receipts and all that other stuff. I think Hogan is a piece of shit, so obviously I'm like 'Steve Austin, yeah.' What it feels like, I don't have the words to describe. I know what I feel like is, I want to help everyone on the AEW roster fucking get there," he said.
AEW Senior Vice President Chris Harrington noted on social media that there are "at least six business metrics that have seen a sizable bump since CM Punk joined AEW."
Punk is set to face Powerhouse Hobbs on Friday at AEW Rampage Grand Slam. Fightful will have live coverage of the event beginning at 10 p.m. ET.
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