AEW hot take: CM Punk’s tendency to take away from the program

All Elite Wrestling
All Elite Wrestling /

CM Punk’s past is driving a narrative of potential disruption at the top of AEW.

When looking at CM Punk’s history with wrestling companies and his vocalness towards them, it’s no wonder why there have been reports of his unhappiness with AEW. The reports talk of current issues with “Hangman” Adam Page, which harken back to past situations before Punk left professional wrestling for seven years. This situation raises alarm for AEW fans as Punk is the current champion and the central focus of the men’s division, potentially causing a shift and distraction to where the angle with Jon Moxley was heading.

The distraction of CM Punk’s history is bad for AEW.

Punk is known for blurring the line between backstage politics and what’s seen in the ring. It remains a major criticism of Punk’s legacy and was the focal point of many promos during his feud with Triple H in WWE years ago. From current and past companies, blurring the line has equaled some of the biggest disasters in wrestling history. Anything from the backstage politics of WCW to using real-life demons on the program.

AEW has had its share of problems in a short amount of time with various stars in the last year. Being such a young company, those various controversies have put a sour taste in some fans’ mouths and created easy targets for criticism in the growing polarized conversations throughout wrestling.

Punk is a person who is not shy about taking on dirt sheet taboo head-on and being vocal about anything that rubs him the wrong way. He’s also a big personality within the wrestling community and that’s the perfect storm when combining those factors.

Just like previous incidents with AEW, it becomes more about the individual than about the programming. The time is spent speculating about what’s possibly happening that could shake the program, and it’s not focused on the progression of the storyline in the ring.

With the age of technology and many unveilings of past legitimate rivalries, it’s become easy for fans to get a taste of outside drama. Even if a story was fabricated, it’s an added distraction where no matter how many pipebombs CM Punk may drop, it will still be in the back of everyone’s minds and they will see how far the stars will take it.

It’s not to say that it could be a complete disaster, but it’s a spin of the wheel. With Punk, adding legitimate aspects to a rivalry falls partially on the shoulder of the company. A perfect balance between creative harmony and conflict resolution.

So far, AEW has had controversies that distracted fans and it will be a true test in event that there is in fact conflict again. If there is no conflict with CM Punk, fans will continue to use his reputation as a focal point to discredit the organization as a whole.

For either scenario, CM Punk and AEW will just have to make the most of the situation and turn it into an enhancement for the program. If not, it will be yet another example of how the young wrestling company can’t seem to fight distractions.

This is all happening as CM Punk goes against Jon Moxley one on one to determine the undisputed AEW world champion. Even with there being so much on the line, the focus has been on whether Punk is happy or not.

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Hopefully, this will lead to more for AEW, CM Punk, and wrestling fans rather than just another blunder in wrestling history. Either way, fans will have to wait and see as CM Punk continues the next part of his journey on AEW Dynamite.