Backstage AEW News On CM Punk, His Reputation & Success

CM Punk returned to AEW TV nearly a month ago and has already resolidified himself as a big part of the overall brand. Pro Wrestling Torch reports that Punk is taking pride in putting his stamp of approval on Saturday night’s AEW Collision program, both in the ring and behind the curtain. Since returning, he is said to actively be looking to mend fences and repair what some have perceived as a damaged reputation. The report also noted that not everyone backstage at AEW has embraced the Second City Saint quite yet, but so far, things have generally been positive, and the vibe is that things have begun moving in the right direction.

On that note, Wrestlenomics is reporting that, once again, Punk has already become the top merchandise seller for the company. The other top merchandise movers include Orange Cassidy, The Acclaimed, FTR (w/ CM Punk), and Kris Statlander. Merchandise sales are only one part of the equation when it comes to measuring success in pro wrestling; TV viewership is also a powerful barometer.

Collision’s debut pulled in around 950,000 viewers, which includes live viewers and those who watched later on DVR and was ranked #4 for the night among cable originals. Since then, Collision has dropped to around 500,000 viewers for episode three, and we should have information regarding viewership for week four, which includes Punk vs Samoa Joe, later today.

Fightful reports that Warner Brothers Discovery isn’t as concerned with Collision’s overall viewership but more with the ranking it pulls in among cable originals. A win for WBD would be Collision consistently ranking in the top five cable originals for Saturdays, which admittedly will become difficult when college football begins, and WWE starts running premium live events, like SummerSlam.

Fightful also noted that once Bryan Danielson went down with an injury at Forbidden Door, Punk offered to participate in Blood & Guts in his sted, teaming with the Blackpool Combat Club to take on The Elite. Considering the unresolved bad blood between Punk and The Elite, and possibly Jon Moxley, for that matter, it is not clear whether the offer was serious or not. Still, Punk has made it clear since returning to AEW that he is willing to work with The Elite.

“Neither team would want him,” is what a source close to the situation said before it was noted that the surprise partners for the match have already been decided.