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CM Punk

CM Punk

Real Name: Phillip Jack Brooks
Date of Birth: October 26, 1978
Billed Height: 6’2”
Billed Weight: 218 pounds
Spouse: AJ Mendez (AJ Lee)

Accomplishments

Major Titles Held

Current AEW Champion
3 Time World Heavyweight Champion
2 Time WWE Champion
1 Time ECW Champion
1 Time Intercontinental Champion
1 Time World Tag Team Champion with Kofi Kingston
Money in the Bank winner in 2008 and 2009
Headlined 17 WWE PPVs
Headlined 1 AEW PPV

Life Before Wrestling

CM Punk was born in Chicago, Il. His father was an alcoholic. Punk did not want to be like his father and adopted a Straight Edge lifestyle at an early age. He incorporated his Straight Edge lifestyle throughout his wrestling career in every promotion that he wrestled in.

Early Years in Wrestling

During CM Punk’s early training, he met Colt Cabana and became long time friends with him. They would team up as The Second City Saints. CM Punk wrestled for IWA on and off from 1999-2005 and TNA in 2003-2004. The wrestling industry took note of him when he started wrestling for Ring of Honor in 2004.

CM Punk in TNA

CM Punk wrestled for TNA in 2004 feuding with Raven, among others.

Ring of Honor: CM Punk vs. Samoa Joe

In 2004, the Samoa Joe-CM Punk trilogy for Joe’s ROH Title caught the attention of the wrestling world. In June, they wrestled to a 60-minute draw. The rematch was signed in October, in which they went to another 60-minute draw. Joe finally one the third encounter in December in a no time limit match.

2005: ROH departure, CM Punk signs with WWE

The series of matches between Samoa Joe and CM Punk in ROH caught the eye of the WWE. They brought Punk in for a tryout match in May and offered him a deal. Punk signed with WWE in June. Even though signed to WWE, CM Punk defeated Austin Areas for the ROH Title. The ROH fans knew that Punk was on his way out to go to WWE and were shocked at the title change. Punk turned heel by telling the fans that he was leaving ROH for WWE and taking the ROH title with him. Mick Foley made several appearances in ROH to tell Punk to do the right thing and not walk out with the title. The fans showed up for Punk’s next title defense assuming it would be a title change. Punk and ROH orchestrated this angle brilliantly as Punk successfully defended the title in his next four matches. This period of time in ROH became known as “The Summer of Punk”. Punk finally dropped the title in his fifth defense in a 4-Way Elimination match involving himself, James Gibson, Samoa Joe, and Christopher Daniels when Gibson won the match and the title

CM Punk in OVW 2005 and 2006

CM Punk’s WWE career began when he started wrestling for Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW) in 2005. Paul Heyman had just started working with talent there after the departure of Jim Cornette. It was there that Paul Heyman thought Punk had the makings to be a big star. He would go on to win the OVW Heavyweight, OVW TV, and OVW Tag Team Titles while he was there. Punk wrestled some dark matches and on Sunday Night Heat during this time. At one point, there were plans for him to have Mickie James as his manager but plans changed.

2006: CM Punk debuts on WWE ECW

CM Punk was brought up to the WWE ECW brand in July, just a few months after WWE resurrected ECW as their third brand after presenting the second ECW One Night Stand PPV. He debuted on the August 1, 2006 episode of ECW on SyFy.

2007: CM Punk wins WWE ECW Title

One of the main feuds in WWE ECW was the ECW Originals (stars from the original ECW in the 1990s) vs The New Breed (new talent appearing on ECW). Punk was part of the New Breed before turning on them and siding with the Originals. Bobby Lashley was stripped of the ECW Title when he got drafted to RAW. A tournament took place to crown a new champion. It came down to Chris Benoit and CM Punk with the match scheduled to take place at the Night of Champions PPV. Benoit was replaced due to the double murder of Benoit’s wife and son and his suicide. Benoit was replaced by Johnny Nitro who defeated Punk for the vacant championship. Punk won the title from Morrison in September.

2008: CM Punk gets drafted to Monday Night Raw

CM Punk lost the ECW title to Chavo Guerrero. He got called up to the main roster and won Money in the Bank at WrestleMania XXIV. Punk was drafted to RAW in June. On his first night on RAW, Punk cashed in his Money in the Bank and beat Edge for the World Heavyweight Championship. At the Championship Scramble PPV, Legacy, which consisted of Randy Orton, Cody Rhodes, and Ted DiBiase, conducted a hyenas assault on Punk with Orton punting Punk in the head and injuring him, which resulted in Punk having to forfeit the title. In October, Punk teamed with Kofi Kingston to defeat Rhodes and DiBiase to win the World Tag Team Championship. They lost them in December to The Miz and John Morrison.

2009: CM Punk wins WWE World Heavyweight Title, formation of Straight Edge Society

Punk won the Intercontinental Title from William Regal in January, but lost it to JBL in March. At WrestleMania 25, Punk once again won Money in the Bank. He was drafted to SmackDown in April. He successfully cashed in his Money in the Bank on Jeff Hardy to win the World Heavyweight Title in June. In the rematch, Punk turned heel and proclaimed himself better than Jeff Hardy because he is Straight Edge. Punk wouldn’t hold the title long as he lost it back to Jeff Hardy at the Night of Champions in July, only for Punk to win it back at SummerSlam in August. The Undertaker attacked Punk after the match, leading to the two of them feuding for the rest of the year. Punk retained the title over The Undertaker in September at the Breaking Point PPV. The Undertaker beat Punk for the title in a Hell in a Cell match PPV in October and again at Bragging Rights PPV. Punk formed an almost cult-like following called The Straight Edge Society in November. His first two converts into this lifestyle were Luke Gallows and Serena (Deeb).

2010: Feud with Rey Mysterio, Straight Edge Society disbands, new leader of the Nexus

Punk feuded with Rey Mysterio for the first quarter of 2010. They were part of the Elimination Chamber in which Punk eliminated Mysterio. Mysterio beat Punk at WrestleMania XXVI in a match that if Mysterio lost, he would have to join the Straight Edge Society. In a rematch, Punk defeated Mysterio at Extreme Rules in which if Punk lost, he would have to have his head shaved. After the match, Joey Mercury joined the Straight Edge Society. They fought again at Over the Limit where if Punk lost, he would have his head shaved and if Mysterio lost, he would have to join the Straight Edge Society. Mysterio won and Punk’s head was shaved bald. Punk then appeared on TV wearing a mask. Punk’s next feud for the next two months was with Big Show. Show would eventually pull the mask off of Punk. At SummerSlam, Show won a 3 on 1 match against the Straight Edge Society when Punk walked out on his team. Punk lost to Show one on one the following month at Night of Champions. The Straight Edge Society disbanded when Serena was let go by the company and Mercury was injured. Punk was drafted back to RAW once again in November and immediately took over control of the lead heel group, The Nexus, from Wade Barrett. Some of the Nexus members stayed with Barrett and they formed a group called The Core.

2011: CM Punk vs. John Cena feud, Pipebomb promo, 

Punk was looking for revenge on Randy Orton who cost Punk the title in 2008. However, Orton took out all the members of the Nexus. This set the stage for Punk vs Orton in which Orton beat Punk at WrestleMania XXVII and Extreme Rules. Punk became the number one contender to John Cena’s WWE Title. The match was set for Money in the Bank on July 17th, the same day Punk’s WWE contract was set to expire. Much like what he did in ROH in 2005, Punk threatened to win the title and leave the WWE with the championship he said he possibly might take it to New Japan or ROH. Punk appeared on Monday Night RAW to hype the title match at Money in the Bank and cut a scathing promo on John Cena, Vince McMahon, and the WWE. Punk claimed the WWE did not market him correctly and that John Cena was an ass kisser. This promo became known as “The Pipe Bomb” promo. It was picked up by media outlets across the country and had the wrestling world buzzing about it. Was it scripted? Was it a shoot? Fans got behind CM Punk in his match against John Cena. The event took place at The Allstate Arena in Rosemont, Il. Cena had Punk in the STF. Vince McMahon and John Laurinaitis came down and told the referee to award the match to Cena similar to the Montreal screwjob. Before that happened, Cena broke the hold as he did not want the victory in that manner. Punk hit the Go to Sleep on Cena to pin him and retain the title. The crowd was ecstatic. McMahon wasn’t finished. He then ordered the Money in the Bank winner, Alberto Del Rio, to come down and cash it in on Punk. Punk kicked Del Rio and left as the WWE Champion before Del Rio could cash it in. This will easily go down as one of the top five crowd reactions bell to bell in WWE history. Punk left for a month, and during that time, fans in the arenas would chant CM Punk’s name. On the July 25th episode of RAW, a tournament was held to determine a new WWE Champion. Rey Mysterio won the tournament and the championship. In the same episode, Mysterio then had to face the former champion, John Cena. Cena beat Mysterio to win the title. Punk returned and a champion vs champion match was scheduled for SummerSlam. Punk won the match and the title, however, Kevin Nash attacked Punk after the match. Following the attack, Alberto Del Rio cashed in his Money in the Bank on Punk to win the title. Punk would regain the title from Del Rio at Survivor Series.

2012: Feud with Chris Jericho, CM Punk turns heel on The Rock, Ryback match at Hell in a Cell

Punk engaged in a feud with Chris Jericho for the first quarter of 2012 with both claiming to be “The Best in the World”. It started when Jericho attacked Punk who was defending the WWE Title against Daniel Bryan at the Royal Rumble. They fought at Elimination Chamber, WrestleMania XXVIII and Extreme Rules with Punk emerging victorious. Punk followed that up with a two month successful title program against Daniel Bryan. At RAW 1000 in July, The Rock showed up to announce he would be wrestling for the WWE Title at the Royal Rumble in 2013. Punk turned heel by attacking The Rock and aligning himself with Paul Heyman as his manager. Punk said he demands respect and is tired of being overlooked while he has been the champion. Punk would go on to defeat Ryback at Hell in a Cell. At Survivor Series, Punk retained the title over John Cena when The Shield (Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins, and Dean Ambrose) made their debut and attacked Cena.

2013: The Rock beats CM Punk for WWE Championship, Punk vs. Undertaker at WrestleMania 29, babyface turn

The Rock returned at the Royal Rumble, and as promised, defeated CM Punk to become the WWE Champion. Punk’s title reign came to an end at 434 days, making him the longest reigning WWE Champion in the previous 25 years. He again lost to The Rock at Elimination Chamber. He then lost to the Undertaker at WrestleMania 29. He defeated Chris Jericho at Payback and told Heyman he did not want him to accompany him to ringside anymore and got attacked by Heyman’s other client, Brock Lesnar for those comments, turning Punk back into a babyface. Lesnar beat Punk by DQ at SummerSlam. Punk then defeated Ryback and Paul Heyman in a Hell in a Cell match.

2014: CM Punk walks out on WWE, Colt Cabana lawsuit

Punk left the WWE amid many injuries, complaints over his push, and payoffs and failing to be in the main event at WrestleMania. Fans would chant CM Punk’s name in buildings across the country on and off years after he left. Punk listed a number of injuries that WWE wanted him to work through, some confirmed, some not, resulting in lawsuits. In November of 2014, Punk went on his long-time friend Colt Cabana’s Art of Wrestling podcast to tell his side of the story and made accusations against WWE doctor Christopher Amann of medical malpractice. Amann filed a defamation lawsuit for $4 million dollars that included not only Punk, but also Colt Cabana for hosting the podcast and allowing this interview to take place. Punk and Cabana won the lawsuit in 2018. Cabana then filed a lawsuit against Punk as he claimed Punk was supposed to pay Cabana’s legal fees. Punk filed a lawsuit against Cabana. Both lawsuits were settled in 2019. They no longer speak to each other. Now that both are in AEW, in a recent interview with AEW owner Tony Khan, when asked if Punk and Cabana get along together now that both work for him, Tony Khan replied, “I can’t talk about that.”

2015: CM Punk trains for UFC debut

CM Punk began training for his debut in UFC. While in training, he suffered an injury and announced that his first fight would be delayed.

2016: CM Punk MMA debut vs. Mickey Gall at UFC 203

CM Punk made his debut at UFC 203. He was taken down and immediately choked out by Mickey Gall. Punk said he is not done in the UFC and that he would continue to train, get better, and come back for his second fight.

2018: CM Punk vs. Mike Jackson at UFC 225

At UFC 225, Punk once again lost, this time via unanimous decision to Mike Jackson. Three years later, the decision was switched to a no contest after Jackson tested positive for marijuana. UFC President Dana White said CM Punk would not be fighting for UFC again. Punk later would say he had no regrets about fighting in MMA as it was always something he wanted to try. He said he worked hard in training, but was not at the level of the fighters in UFC. Also in 2018, another MMA organization, Cage Fury Fighting Championships, signed CM Punk as an announcer for their company which he still does to this day.

2019: CM Punk joins WWE Backstage on FOX Sports 1

WWE debuted a new show called WWE Backstage. WWE had just gotten on the Fox Network and they wanted CM Punk to be on this show. Because Punk was signing with Fox and not WWE, he took the job to come on the show and analyze the current WWE product. The show did not last long as ratings continued to decline, coupled with the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

2021: CM Punk signs with AEW

All Elite Wrestling started on TNT Network on October 2nd, 2019. Owner Tony Khan wanted to sign CM Punk and be the star of the promotion. Punk chose not to sign and sit it out to see if this company was for real and how they would do. On August 20, 2021, CM Punk made his AEW debut to an enormous crowd reaction on Rampage, challenging Darby Allin to a match at the All-Out PPV. He defeated Allin in Punk’s first match in 7 years.

2022: AEW World Champion, feud with MJF, hiatus due to foot injury

Punk then entered a feud with MJF. MJF beat Punk in their first meeting, but Punk gained revenge by beating MJF in a bloody Dog Collar match. Punk went on to win the AEW Title by defeating Adam Page at Double or Nothing. Less than a week later, Punk came to the ring to announce that he was injured (he needed foot surgery), he would be out of action for a while, and wanted to relinquish the AEW title, however, Tony Khan wanted him to remain champion. A tournament took place for the Interim AEW Championship which was won by Jon Moxley. When Punk returns, he will fight whoever is the AEW Interim Champion at the time to unify the titles.

Listing of WWE/World Heavyweight/AEW Title Defenses:

JBL, Kane, Batista, Chris Jericho, Jeff Hardy, Rey Mysterio, Edge, Undertaker, Matt Hardy, Alberto Del Rio, Dolph Ziggler, John Cena, The Miz, Kofi Kingston, R-Truth, Mark Henry, Daniel Bryan, Big Show, Ryback

Listing of PPV Main Events

2006:

WWE December to Dismember: ECW Championship: Bobby Lashley defeated Big Show ( c ), Test, Rob Van Dam, Hardcore Holly, and CM Punk to win the title

2009:

WWE Extreme Rules: World Heavyweight Championship: CM Punk defeated Jeff Hardy ( c ) cashed in his Money in the Bank to win the title

WWE Night of Champions: World Heavyweight Championship: Jeff Hardy defeated CM Punk ( c ) to win the title

WWE SummerSlam: World Heavyweight Championship: CM Punk defeated Jeff Hardy ( c ) in a TLC match to win the title

WWE Breaking Point: World Heavyweight Championship: CM Punk ( c ) defeated The Undertaker in a submission match

2010:

WWE Elimination Chamber: World Heavyweight Championship: Chris Jericho defeated The Undertaker ( c ), John Morrison, Rey Mysterio, CM Punk, and R-Truth in an Elimination Chamber match to win the title

2011:

WWE Elimination Chamber: John Cena defeated CM Punk, John Morrison, King Sheamus, Randy Orton, and R-Truth in an Elimination Chamber match

WWE Money in the Bank: WWE Championship: CM Punk defeated John Cena ( c ) to win the title

WWE SummerSlam: Undisputed WWE Championship: CM Punk ( c ) defeated John Cena ( c ). After the match Alberto Del Rio cashed in his Money in the Bank to defeat Punk for the title

WWE Night of Champions: Triple H defeated CM Punk in a No DQ match

WWE Hell in a Cell: WWE Championship: Alberto Del Rio defeated CM Punk and John Cena ( c ) to win the title

WWE TLC: WWE Championship: CM Punk ( c ) defeated Alberto Del Rio and The Miz in a TLC match

2012:

WWE Night of Champions: CM Punk ( c ) defeated John Cena

WWE Hell in a Cell: CM Punk ( c ) defeated Ryback in a Hell in a Cell match

WWE Survivor Series: Triple Threat match for the WWE Championship: CM Punk ( c ) defeated John Cena and Ryback

2013:

WWE Royal Rumble: WWE Championship: The Rock defeated CM Punk ( c ) to win the title

WWE Elimination Chamber: WWE Championship: The Rock ( c ) defeated CM Punk

2022:

AEW Championship: CM Punk ( c ) defeated Adam Page to win the title

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