Backstage News On When TKO Found Out About CM Punk's New WWE Deal

Another year of WWE Survivor Series WarGames is in the books and it's safe to say that the show went off the air as eventfully as possible. After almost 10 years, CM Punk returned to WWE in front of a hometown crowd in Chicago, Illinois. As the dust settles ahead of Punk's "WWE Raw" return tonight, the latest "Wrestling Observer Radio" features Dave Meltzer offering some details on Punk's return.

"The deal came together about 10 days ago," Meltzer said. "[They] obviously kept it [completely] secret from almost everyone. Paul Levesque said that the TKO people found out watching the TV, which I thought was ridiculous until I asked around and I was told the exact same thing."

Meltzer then speculated that some of the top brass at TKO, such as Ari Emanuel, could have been informed ahead of time, but that most of the company was not informed as they had no reason to be. Additionally, Meltzer said that Punk signed a multi-year deal with WWE and that Vince McMahon was not involved in the decision-making process. Instead, it was Nick Khan who made the final call, with plenty of input from Levesque.

Additional Details On Punk's Return

Fightful Select also has a few more updates on how the deal came together. Talent was made aware of Punk's debut shortly before it occurred, and the former AEW star openly appeared backstage during the final minutes of the main event rather than remaining hidden. Along with that, Punk and Levesque reportedly had an hour-long phone conversation in the last couple of weeks that helped clear up any potential issues the two may have had, paving the way for Punk's return.

Punk's initial run with the company ended poorly, with Punk notoriously telling his side of the story during a 2014 appearance on Colt Cabana's podcast, "The Art of Wrestling." In addition to his problems with the company's medical team, Punk spoke openly about his issues with Triple H, but it appears both men are ready to leave that in the past for the time being.

Earlier this year, before making his return to AEW, Punk made a surprise appearance backstage at WWE. He is said to have spoken to a few individuals, including Levesque, before he was asked to leave. At the time, it was reported that McMahon had asked for Punk to be removed.