Tony Khan Compares CM Punk Being Booed At Full Gear To The Rock At WrestleMania X-8

The Rock stalks Hulk Hogan in the ring

AEW President Tony Khan has responded to CM Punk getting booed during his match against Eddie Kingston at Full Gear, saying it was like the reaction The Rock received when he fought Hulk Hogan at WrestleMania X-8.

WrestleMania X-8 in 2002 featured one of the biggest dream matches in wrestling history as The Rock faced the iconic Hulk Hogan for the first time in singles action.

At that time, The Rock was one of the company’s top babyfaces, while Hogan was part of the infamous NWO faction alongside Scott Hall and Kevin Nash. During the match, however, the Toronto fans put their weight behind ‘The Hulkster’ and began booing ‘The People’s Champion’.

Despite losing the match, by the end of the night, Hogan was a firm fan favourite. He shook The Rock’s hand to show his respect, prompting Hall and Nash to come out to the ring and attack him, ending his time with the NWO and confirming his turn.

On November 14th at AEW Full Gear, CM Punk received a similar reaction from the Minneapolis fans as they favoured his opponent, Eddie Kingston. During the post-show media scrum, Tony Khan compared the two reactions, saying they were similar, although there were “way, way more Punk fans” at Full Gear than Rock fans at WrestleMania.

“I remember being the only person out of 70,000 cheering for The Rock in Toronto. My friend looked over me like, ‘what are you doing?’ And I was like, ‘somebody has to.’ And that’s how I felt about Punk getting booed tonight (vs. Kingston). There were way, way, way more Punk people tonight than there were Rock people in Toronto, though. I can attest as I was there for both shows.”

Staying on Toronto, Khan was also asked if there would be an AEW show held in Canada. He said he would love to, and that he was biased towards the city.

“I would love to come to Canada. There are a number of great wrestling cities all across Canada. It’s a great country for wrestling. I have so much respect for so many Canadian wrestlers from different cities. I’m very biased towards Toronto because my father owns a Four Seasons Hotel there.”

At Full Gear, CM Punk went on to defeat Eddie Kingston with a GTS in a brutal and emotional match.

H/T to Wrestling Inc. for the above transcription.