CM Punk’s arrival in WWE has had a huge impact.
When CM Punk walked out in front of a packed crowd at Survivor Series the wrestling world stood stunned. Not only had Punk returned to WWE after almost a decade away following a spectacularly acrimonious exit, but his big comeback had somehow been kept a secret.
After this appearance, Punk headed to Raw, SmackDown, and NXT before officially becoming part of Monday Night Raw. While Punk’s return has done blockbuster numbers on social media, and his merchandise is flying off the shelves, he could yet have an even bigger impact on WWE.
It’s been reported that AEW could move from TBS and even Warner Bros Discovery altogether when the latest round of TV rights negotiations are complete. Not only that, WWE Raw could land with WBD, despite talks said to be dead just weeks earlier.
Although it seems to be wide of the mark to suggest Punk alone is the reason for the shift, his arrival in WWE and early success from a business perspective have impacted the playing field.
Writing in the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Dave Meltzer noted that it’s been stated to him that Punk has been a major part of WWE’s pitch to WBD.
“The CM Punk signing looks to have opened doors up since Endeavor’s Mark Shapiro along with Nick Khan and Paul Levesque had a meeting with WBD this past week.
One report we had was that Punk was a major part of the pitch, with the idea he’d be a regular on the Raw brand. The report we had included pushing his merchandise sales and social media views along with ratings of recent shows.”
CM Punk To Make In-Ring Return At ‘The Garden’
It’s been announced that CM Punk will return to the ring at Madison Square Garden on December 26th. The match against Dominik Mysterio will be his first in WWE since January 2014. WWE will also be dusting off a classic stipulation for Cody Rhodes’ match with Shinsuke Nakamura.