Eric Bischoff Claims CM Punk Is “The Biggest Financial Flop In Wrestling History”

Eric Bischoff

Eric Bischoff has blasted CM Punk’s AEW career to date, not just saying that it’s failed but that financially it’s the biggest flop ever in wrestling.

Speaking on his 83 Weeks Podcast, former WCW President Eric Bischoff gave some insight in to his recent social media spat with CM Punk, including the phrase “an old head bad faith bad take carny dipsh*t” being used.

Putting a caveat on what he was about to say, Eric Bischoff claimed he wasn’t trying to start a fight with Punk but was just comparing television ratings to the investment which had been made in the former World Champion.

I wasn’t picking a fight, I was responding. Punk had some very edgy comments that I’m assuming were directed to me because they were in response to something [Conrad] and I said in a very interesting conversation about current wrestling, WWE and AEW. But evidently, he got a little case of the ass-rash and decided to lash out on social media.

I love that sh*t, I love to counter punch. Sometimes I don’t really wake up until I’ve been hit really hard, it’s just my nature but he threw a punch on social media and I thought this would be fun so I responded. I pointed out that this was a guy who came out and said that for a guy who thinks he was a bigger deal than Scott Hall and Kevin Nash coming to WCW, so far he’s fallen flat on his face.

I published his quote, I didn’t make anything up. I took his quote and posted it and said how’s that working out? Which it isn’t, obviously. In terms of a return on investment, this guy has to be the biggest financial flop in the history of wrestling.

Eric Bischoff went on to discuss the fact that there are claims Punk shifts a lot of merchandise which helps the balance, saying that he would eat his words if he was shown the exact figures.

How many millions of dollars in net profit in t-shirt sales is he doing? Nobody knows and we’re responding to comments that aren’t backed up. If somebody can show me, then I’ll eat my words and I’m happy to do that. I’m wrong a lot, I’m aggressive, I try new things, I talk sh*t and I’m not always right and if I’m wrong, I’m wrong.

So far all we get is ‘he’s selling so much merchandise,’ but how much is so much? By the way, once the initial excitement of anybody, not just CM Punk, you bring somebody in, you launch a new t-shirt, new merchandise, you get a big hit and then it just levels out so you come up with something new and if you’re really over, you can continue to come up with new merchandise and fill the tank. I don’t know if that’s true.

At this point Bischoff reiterated his original point that it wasn’t strictly cash he was talking about, but it’s relative value to television ratings.

In the context of the conversations that we’ve had on this show, which was the catalyst for Punk’s response on social media, we’re talking about television ratings, we’re talking about impact. We weren’t talking about the broader spectrum of revenue opportunities. In terms of television, he’s been a horrible return on investment.

I’m not saying he certainly hasn’t had any impact on advertising, only Turner Broadcasting would know that. Nobody at AEW would know that because AEW doesn’t sell their own advertising, Turner does. In terms of the context of Punk comparing himself to Randy Savage, Scott Hall, and Kevin Nash and the impact that they had on WCW vs. Punk coming out and saying he’s a bigger deal than that, in terms of ratings he’s fallen flat on his face.

He came out to 1.17 million people who came out to see his debut Friday night on Rampage, it’s down to around 400-500 thousand on average. Punk’s primer on Dynamite did like 1.29 million people and they came, they saw and they left and now they’re hovering around that 900,000. Which they’ve been doing for, I don’t know, a year, year and a half.

When Punk comes out and says he’s a bigger deal than Scott Hall and Kevin Nash coming to WCW, that created a paradigm shift with people watching wrestling, where Punk has created absolutely nothing.

It seems as if it could be a long time before the paths of Eric Bischoff and CM Punk cross again after this, especially as the former WCW President has said he will never be invited back to AEW.

With thanks to Wrestling Inc for the transcription.