CM Punk Explains Why Initially Getting To WWE Was Never His Goal

CM Punk was recently awarded the Iron Mike Mazurki Award by the Cauliflower Alley Club, and in his acceptance speech, disclosed that his goal in his younger years was to wrestle in Japan and not WWF-WWE. He said that he didn't have any intention to join WWE early in his career.


"WWF, to me, was never the goal," revealed Punk. "I looked up to people who went to Japan to wrestle. I thought the idea of going to Japan and being a superstar, like a Bruiser Brody or a Stan Hansen or an Eddie Guerrero, and coming home and nobody knowing who you are ... I thought that was the coolest idea in the world. That's what I wanted."

Punk recalled having a conversation with the late Japanese star Shinya Hashimoto, who told him that he was too big to be a cruiserweight and too small to be a heavyweight, which crushed his dreams of becoming a star in Japan. He then chose to join WWE after speaking to Tommy Dreamer, who was then working behind the scenes in WWE.

"Then Tommy [Dreamer] called and I said, 'Tommy, if they legitimately want to look at me ... I'm not a WWE guy. I'm skinny fat, I wore basketball shorts.' I dedicated myself, I told Tommy, 'Give me six to eight months. I'm gonna bust my ass and I'm gonna get into shape and do everything I can until when they legitimately take a look at me, they will not be able to say no.'"


Punk thanked Val Venis, who he wrestled on "Sunday Night Heat," which, he says, ensured that he was offered a WWE contract. He joined WWE in 2005, a few months after his match with Venis, and went on to have a legendary career with the promotion, which came to a bitter end in 2014.