Rob Van Dam says backstage fights used to end up in the ring.
CM Punk is no longer with AEW after the company “terminated for cause” Punk’s contract on September 1st. That decision came after Punk was involved in a backstage incident with Jack Perry at All In, but that was not the first time Punk had gotten physical backstage with his colleagues.
Punk was suspended by the company in September 2022 following All Out when he was embroiled in a backstage fight with The Elite after an explosive appearance at the post-show media scrum.
While the decision to fire Punk has not been a universally popular one, Rob Van Dam isn’t even sure why the incident became news in the first place.
Speaking on his 1 Of A Kind podcast, Rob Van Dam explained why he was surprised the altercation between CM Punk and Jack Perry was big news.
“It happened, and it wasn’t that big of a deal. I’m sure people are going to sh*t on this opinion, but that’s what I said when I saw that every single site was picking this up. I said to Katie, I’m sure it’s my old school fundamentals, but I said ‘I don’t think this should be that big of a deal.’ She said, ‘Right, they’re both fighters, right?’
“I see at weigh-ins where they do the face-off and they take the picture, a lot of times they get too close and they pie face and start going at it or whatever, and I get you got to set some strict rules if you don’t want that to happen every single time, I get it with that. But with wrestling, it’s even a little bit different because the competitors don’t have the whole injury, win or lose, be in the best condition possible to have every advantage, wrestlers aren’t in that the same way that a fighter is.
“So if they let out a little bit of steam every once in a while, usually what would happen is that the promoter would put those two in the ring as soon as possible. That happened every time that I can think about it. That’s what Paul did with me and Taz. It’s always been that way and I always find that people work it out by working together.
“I’m surprised that it’s that big of news, but if you look at it like it’s football, sure whatever I guess. With wrestling, I don’t know, it’s not something you should just ignore if you’re the boss and you got millions and millions invested and some of that is going to these two players and you need to handle the business end of it to protect your investment. Besides that, it’s not the same thing as the corporate office, it’s the dressing room.”
Rob Van Dam recently made AEW debut
Rob Van Dam recently made his AEW debut on the 9th of August edition of Dynamite where he just so happened to challenge Jack Perry for the FTW Championship. Perry won that match but lost the title on the pre-show of All In when he was defeated by HOOK.
For his part in the altercation with CM Punk, Tony Khan confirmed that Perry is still suspended indefinitely by the company.