Five iconic replacements for CM Punk on AEW Collision


With CM Punk gone, it seems that AEW Collision’s fate is sealed. Is there an iconic replacement for Mr. Greatest In The World? I think there is.

On the September 2nd taping on AEW Collision, the viewer numbers dipped to 345,000 and the most likely cause is the loss of the face that runs the place, CM Punk. CM Punk did some wonderful services for the new show, keeping it from the fate of being just another B-team show (ahem…Rampage). I am firmly behind Tony Khan’s decision to let go of the drama, but that does no favors for their brand-new investment. Here are some worthy and farfetched replacements that would help the brand.

1. Mick Foley

If you want experience and charisma without all that drama, then Mick Foley is your man for leading a show. He has experience being a major chairman in TNA and he has hardcore credibility in all he does. Imagine the man who is bold enough to throw himself off a twenty-foot cage making up show ideas for a brand. Foley is not as hot as a commodity as CM Punk, but Mick would add a flavor to Collision that would make it undeniably different than Rampage.

Most likely, Mick would not be an active wrestler, but he could take young talent under his wing and elevate them. He could start his own faction that would be exclusive to Collision. You might think that hiring another Attitude Era veteran is out of touch, but you have to admit that seeing Mick run an AEW show would make you curious. Tony Khan could at least sleep at night knowing that Mick wouldn’t be threatening his staff.

2. Christian and Edge (tag team a show)

You can file this one under dreams. The rumor that Edge is coming over to AEW is as credible as the rumor that Vince McMahon owns both WWE and AEW. Let’s play with this idea. AEW is strongest with tag-team matches. AEW Collision has already proven that tag teams are a huge selling point. Christian and Edge spearheading this show as co-directors would elevate Collision as the place to get excited about tag team wrestling.

The presence of Edge coming to the ring would be equal to CM Punk’s reception. Edge would have to invite Christian along otherwise it would feel weird not involving his counterpart. When the two unite on Collision they can promise a match against the Hardy Boys. Or, if Edge and Christian are feeling up to it, they could invite FTR and The Bucks to a ladder match. It would be a sold-out show with at least 700,000 viewers.

You might groan at the thought of AEW trying to take WWE’s old memories and capitalize on them, but this could be the shock treatment that would get Collision back on track. I know it is wishful thinking, but it is fun to think about it.

3. Colt Cabana

I know what you are thinking. Colt Cabana does not sparkle with hype and excitement nearly as much as CM Punk.  Colt is a workhorse that has amazing work ethic and a gift for elevating talent. He made Ricky Starks look amazing in NWA. He made the Dark Order look good back when they looked like Fat Shark Boy and a guy named Stu.

I am asking a lot out of Colt Cabana. He has to run an entire show and drag it out of the pits. He might not be up for it. Though, Colt would make stories interesting and fun. He could introduce a new title and put the spotlight on the new blood. He could get in a feud with Samoa Joe to keep up with ROH.

This option will not bring glory to Collision as much as it will bring stability and young talent to it. It would be up to the writers to work with Colt to help him look good.

4. An International Brand

The one thing AEW does 1000 times better than WWE is to include talent from all over the world. They have networks all over Europe, Asia, and South America. WWE has dropped the ball on renewing NXT UK, so this would be the perfect opportunity to create a show that loves wrestling from other countries. The best part about international wrestling is that it would be an excuse to make a cruiserweight show. Everyone wants a cruiserweight show they are just too scared to admit it.

Imagine Jon Moxley putting the international title against Tiger Mask. Think about a cage match with BXB Hulk, Vikingo, Aerostar, and Shingo Takagi. A country versus country tournament would be amazing. The women’s division would be Maki Itoh, Thunder Rosa, Flammer, Rika Tatsumi, Lady Apache, and Hikaru Shida. There would be so many chants of “This is Awesome.”

Is there room for an international cruiserweight show for the American markets? I think the fans are begging for one, but the producers see it as a money liability. Take a chance, Tony Khan, and prove us wrong.

5. Stone Cold Steve Austin

You probably think I am on drugs with such a bold choice. Just hear me out. I know this will never happen. Stone Cold Steve Austin will forever live in WWE’s pocket, but one can dream. The Rattlesnake would be such a refreshing change of pace after CM Punk left.

Stone Cold comes out to the Collision arena at a sold-out Texas crowd. He announces that he is the new commissioner of the show. He tells the audience that there will be no more “snowflake babies messing up the show.” He calls out Jack Perry. He tells Jack Perry that things are going to be very different and that he better not be a little ***** backstage. Jack Perry rolls his eyes and Stone Cold Steve Austin gives him a stunner for his troubles.

From that point on we usher in a neo-Attitude Era where Stone Cold’s tough law runs the show. More bloodshed (I can hear Moxley breathing heavily) and ruthless aggression. Fans would clamor just to see how the tough Texan would interact with the AEW talent. He could stun the entire Elite to a glorious roar of affection. You better believe that the main event would be a first-blood match between Jack Perry and Moxley with Steve Austin as special referee.

This would be amazing. Where is the lie?