Ricky Starks Calls CM Punk A Great Rival Who Showed Respect

Ricky Starks headlined AEW: Collision this past Saturday night against “The American Dragon” Bryan Danielson in a brutal Texas Death Match. The two men previously faced off in a bloody Strap Match encounter at AEW: All Out, but it does not appear their feud was always the plan. At AEW: All In London, CM Punk infamously got into a backstage altercation with Jack Perry, and the subsequent internal investigation led to The Second City Saint’s termination. Punk was rumored to be Starks’ opponent at AEW: All Out the next weekend, but with him out of the equation, Danielson stepped into his place.

Following his termination, few AEW talents or representatives have said much about Punk, with Tony Khan repeatedly declining to comment on the “Real AEW World Champion.” Starks has been a rare outlier when it comes to AEW talents speaking publicly about Punk. Recently, the former TNT Champion has shown respect for Punk and Danielson on X. Not long after, an Instagram Stories post from his account was published, also praising Punk, but was deleted shortly after, with Starks claiming he had been hacked.

Starks is back with more praise for Punk today and, as of now, has not claimed to be hacked. The latest Punk comment came after a fan reacted to a post Starks published claiming to be the “Face of AEW and the Face of Collision.”

“Do you miss Phil?” the fan asked.

“Yeah of course,” Starks replied. “Great rival in the ring and treated me with respect.”

Starks caused a stir yesterday when he shared that he is “proud” of Jade Cargill following her signing with WWE. The comment prompted some negative responses from the online pro wrestling community, which AEW Executive Vice President Kenny Omega addressed earlier today.

“This may be news to a lot of fans out there, but when one wrestler goes from one company to another, we tend to always wish them the best and cheer for them while they embark on their new journey,” he said. “Genuinely. It’s embarrassing and shameful that some fans aren’t capable of the same.”