CM Punk believes that his reign as AEW World Champion can top his “Summer of Punk” reigns in both ROH and WWE.
At AEW Double or Nothing, CM Punk pinned Hangman Adam Page to capture the AEW World Championship and begin his first title reign in almost a decade. During the post-show media scrum, Punk was asked if this big win could be the beginning of another “Summer of Punk,” referencing his 2005 reign as Ring of Honor Champion and his 2011 reign as WWE Champion.
CM Punk believes that his reign at the top of AEW could be even better if they tell great stories and focus on wrestling.
“Oh god, I don’t know. I mean that’s the goal, right. And it’s weird, too because I’m a fall guy. I like Halloween, I like the cooler weather. But summer seems to be my time of year. I think we top it by telling great stories and making the focus wrestling. And I have a crazy sandbox full of talent that I get to wrestle and I think that’s how we try to top it.”
After saying that this is the first time in his career that he’s felt comfortable as “the good guy”, CM Punk explained that he feels more connected to his fans than any time previously in his career.
“I feel like this is the first time in my career I’m more comfortable being the good guy. I’ve always felt a little shy about it. I feel more connected more to the audience than ever before. Probably has a lot to do with me disappearing for so long. And every day, really, is a gift. And I think that the fans feel that, and I think I project that.
“It’s just like this could all be gone tomorrow, and I’m just really trying to really relish every single moment I have in the ring and make everything special. That’s how we make that the best Summer of Punk. Just try to make every moment count.”
Back in 2011, CM Punk defeated John Cena at Money in the Bank in his hometown of Chicago to become the WWE Champion, and now he will once again return to the city as the conquering hero for the AEW x NJPW Forbidden Door supershow on June 26th. The prospect of going back to Chicago as the champ is something Punk finds very exciting.
“Everybody always talks about locker room leaders and all this corny s*it. I don’t necessarily think they exist except certain people lead by example. And to me that’s what leading is. So I’ll lead the company into Chicago and I’ll learn from all my past mistakes and do the best I possibly can to show everybody in the locker room, not necessarily the one right way to do things but how to operate and how to conduct yourself as a champion.
“But I’m very excited to go back to Chicago. On top of doing AEW every week, I’ve been filming two television shows, so I kinda haven’t been home in a very, very long time and I’m hoping my schedule clears up a little bit so I get to actually spend a week or two at home before the pay-per-view but we’ll see.
“Shooting a television show in the time of COVID is more chaotic than pro wrestling, but I’m hoping to just keep working hard and staying healthy. And the show’s already sold out, so to me, my focus is selling pay-per-views. But I’m very excited to go home.”
H/T to WrestleZone for the above transcription.