Must-Read CM Punk Interview - Paying Tribute To Savage, Facing Austin Or Jericho At 'Mania, More


If he gets nervous: "I had somebody ask me yesterday if I ever get nervous. This somebody doesn't really know a whole lot about what I do, somebody I recently met. I hate kind of explaining it to people. When I meet somebody who doesn't know who I am, I get excited. I'm like, 'Oh, this is great. This is fantastic. I don't have to talk about work. I don't have to explain anything. I don't have to answer questions. I just get to be me.' I was explaining to her that, no, I don't really get nervous. I can count on one hand how many times I get nervous a year. I love high pressure situations. I thrive on it. It makes me feel alive so when I do get nervous I take it in stride and it just lets me know that I still love this.

"Wrestlemania is one of those times I get nervous. It is the biggest show of the year, all eyes on you. 70,000-80,000 people and not to mention all the people around the world who are watching you live. When you think about it, it gets kind of daunting. I love those situations. It's like, 'Hell yes, everybody look at me. Watch me rise.'"

The last time he got butterflies: "I'm going to say last night [at TLC]. I felt it last night. High pressure situation - no John Cena on the pay-per-view. CM Punk is the champion. I'm supposed to carry the load and I take that responsibility extremely seriously even though there's guys in the locker room that I've been wrestling with for 10 years. I still look at them as my crew. I take it very seriously. I'm the General on the ground and I'll be the first one on the ground and I'll be the last one off. We're going to war; that's the way I look at it. I very much take my responsibility as a leader very seriously. It's not like a we don't need John Cena sort of thing and John gets it."

His altercation with Tony Atlas at OVW: "What it boils down to is a misunderstanding. Tony was unfortunately a victim of backstage OVW politics. The true story is Al Snow, for whatever reason, hated the Major Brothers who is now Curt Hawkins and the broski, Zach Ryder and would give them grief. These guys were on the road, working house shows and if they weren't they were doing RAW and ECW on Tuesdays and they would get back and do OVW TV. They weren't released from developmental yet at the time so Al would make them do the weekend shows. They didn't get a break and they are hard working kids. For some reason Al had a boner for them and he'd constantly give them grief and treat them like crap. They had their wrists taped and it turned into this big thing where they'd try to hassle them about it. 'What happens when you have a taped fist match?' Stuff nobody cares about. So it was a thing.

"Tony was down there talking to the kids about saving your money and doing all that stuff. I was still living in Louisville at the time and I went down there to help out, and I wound up working a Dark Match main event. I had my wrists taped. I didn't know any of this was going on. I was there on my day off. I thought I was being a nice guy. Tony comes up to me and starts talking about the wrist tape. I didn't know what was going on. Tony says, 'If you don't listen to your coach I'm going to write you a bad report and you're never going to get called up to TV.' I was just like, 'What? I can't win this fight.' I said, 'Thank you sir. I appreciate the advice. I'll take it into consideration.' I'm not going to be like, 'I'm on television. I'm the ECW Champion.' It turned into a big thing.

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