CM Punk has compared the backstage environments in WWE and AEW, and, unsurprisingly, it’s very clear which one he prefers.
Punk described WWE as a “shark tank full of bullies” with people burying other talent to keep their spots at the top.
Speaking on Renee Paquette’s Oral Sessions, CM Punk said:
“My perspective is, I came up in a place that was a shark tank full of bullies that were protecting their spot. And it wasn’t about what was good or bad or right or wrong. It was, what I did was always bad and always wrong, and there were people who ran the show who told me to my face, ‘I don’t get it’. And I would just be like, ‘Well what the f**k are we doing?’.
“If I’m in developmental, and to liken it to playing Triple-A (base)ball, I wanna make it to the Major Leagues. And if I’m hitting home runs, I’m the home run king in Triple-A ball, and I get called up to the Major Leagues and the guy on the team with the most home runs tells the hitting coach and the bench coach and the manager, ‘That guy sucks’, it’s just like, oh, we don’t wanna just win games? I came up around a lot of that, but I also think that’s what made me a cycle-breaker.
“Kofi Kingston’s first day on the road, I was like, ‘Hey man, you’re riding with me’, and he was just like, ‘Okay great’. Because I got there and I was already a grown ass man, and I had these other grown ass men picking on me, and I was like, ‘Why is this like high school?’. But that’s the culture, that’s what they want. ‘We want you guys to fight and we want you to want his spot’. And I never wanted anybody’s spot, I wanted my own spot.”
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Punk has spoken highly of the environment backstage at AEW, in particular the handling of the Brodie Lee situation that wasn’t leaked to news outlets.