If CM Punk wants to return to AEW, as have been the rumors for months now, he sure has an odd way of showing it.
After seeming to suggest that his toxic issues with The Elite can be worked out, CM Punk took to his Instagram Stories to lash out at Jon Moxley, Chris Jericho, Tony Khan and Dave Meltzer, all of whom are arguably the real-life pillars of AEW.
In a diatribe similar to his rant at the AEW All Out media scrum, Punk claimed Moxley refused to lose to him last fall—which Moxley ultimately did at AEW All Out—while calling Chris Jericho a “liar and a stooge.”
Said Punk in a since-deleted IG Story on Thursday:
“SIGH. I wasn’t cleared to come back to wrestle yet. Then [sic] plan was to wrestle at the ppv. I sat and listened to Moxleys Rocky three idea. I explained how I’d never seen a Rocky movie. I and thought the idea sucked [sic] but if the boss wanted to do it whatever. He said he wouldn’t lose to me.”
“I’d never experienced someone refusing to lose to me. I just laughed. I asked Tony [Khan] if this was what he wanted. He said yes. He’s the boss so I said okay but I’d need to be cleared first. They kept saying it could just be a squash so I didn’t need to be cleared. I scoffed at that. My health is more important.”
“Dave Meltzer is a liar. Jericho is a liar and a stooge. There were plans but plans always change but I’ll never put a company above my health ever again,” Punk concluded.
For the few who are like CM Punk and have never seen Rocky III, that storyline saw Rocky Balboa get massacred by Clubber Lang, played by Mr. T
Desperate to find an edge after the crushing loss, Balboa went back to basics with the help of Apollo Creed, training at the bare bones Tough Gym in Los Angeles. A newer, more focused and hungrier Rocky Balboa prevailed in the rematch.
A similar storyline played out between CM Punk and Jon Moxley, who squashed CM Punk on the August 24 broadcast of AEW Dynamite in Cleveland, Oh. After an impassioned speech from Punk’s old friend—and fighting partner—Ace Steel, Punk regained the AEW Championship in Chicago at the infamous AEW All Out pay-per-view.
Punk’s own account of his final storylines before implosion suggests AEW pressured him to compete despite not being cleared. It is unclear what CM Punk is referring to while calling Jericho—who reportedly referred to Punk as a locker room cancer—and Dave Meltzer liars. On the latest edition of “Wrestling Observer Radio,” Meltzer noted Punk remains interested in returning to AEW. Punk joins a long list of individuals who have recently called out Meltzer for his reports, including DragonGate and Tony Khan himself.
Just yesterday, CM Punk appeared to suggest he was open to a return while discussing Steve Keirn’s book in an Instagram comment.
“Great story about Gator and Koko fighting in the locker room and then [Jerry] Lawler drags ’em in the office the next day and they squash it,” read the comment. Reading between the lines, Punk could be implying that his issues with The Elite can be squashed as well.
Given Punk’s latest temper tantrum on Instagram, however, an AEW reunion suddenly seems less likely.