Eric Bischoff Calls Out Tony Khan For Obfuscating CM Punk's AEW All Out Status

Tony Khan's decision to not commit to CM Punk's status for AEW All Out has drawn the ire of Eric Bischoff, who believes the AEW boss owes it to the paying public to be transparent about Punk's availability. As noted earlier, Punk's status for Sunday's pay-per-view – in his hometown of Chicago — is up in the air after he and Jack Perry were reportedly suspended for a backstage scuffle at All In. Khan said on a media call Thursday that Punk would be allowed into the United Center only if AEW's ongoing internal investigation were to conclude ahead of Sunday, calling it "a challenging situation."


Addressing the issue on "Strictly Business," Bischoff questioned the point of the investigation, highlighting that Khan was at Gorilla position during Punk and Perry's alleged fight, and therefore should have already reached a verdict on Punk's future. "This is the time when a leader leads," Bischoff said. "If that means, for all of you who bought tickets because you thought CM Punk was gonna be a part of this event, we apologize. Obviously, a situation happened, and it had to be handled the correct way. For the sake of the rest of the roster, and the long-term business ... 'We apologize, Punk's not going to be here this time. Maybe next time.'"

Bischoff urged Khan to "take the bullet" rather than beating around the bush, suggesting that the AEW President would earn "the respect" of fans and the rest of the AEW roster for putting his foot down.


Eric Bischoff To Tony Khan: 'You've Gotta Make A Stand'

"As much empathy as I have for Tony, and I'm really trying to put myself in his shoes — because I've been in that type of situation — but, you've gotta make a stand," Bischoff stressed. "Being wishy-washy and saying 'we're not really sure' ... you owe it to your audience to either say 'yes, he will,' or 'no, he won't.' 


"And there's nothing wrong with [making] a compromise," Bischoff continued. "Because he [Punk] was advertised for the show — let him work the show and then suspend him. But this whole, 'I don't know if he will or won't' ... that's weak."

Bischoff reiterated that "a vast majority of the audience" would respect Tony Khan for "having a backbone" and taking a stance one way or another about Punk. Furthermore, he believes Khan would be holding Punk accountable for his alleged actions at All In, rather than setting a wrong precedent for the rest of the roster. And in the event that Khan does suspend Punk for All Out, he'd be opening the doors to severe backlash, Bischoff opined. 

"If Tony decides not to put him [Punk] on [at All Out], he's going to look horrible, because people are gonna know, 'Wait a minute ... you knew all this stuff ... and you didn't tell us till the last minute?'"


If Punk does indeed work All Out, there's no word on his opponent for Sunday's show. It was previously reportedly that Punk vs. Ricky Starks was planned for the pay-per-view, but the match was nixed after Punk's alleged actions at All In. Starks would instead be wrestling Ricky Steamboat in a Strap Match at the United Center.