CM Punk took part in a UFC 225 open workout media scrum ahead of his upcoming fight with Mike Jackson (0-1) on Saturday in Chicago. While Punk made the transition from WWE to UFC, his friend Ronda Rousey did the opposite, going from the UFC to WWE. During the scrum, Punk was asked if he spoke to Rousey before she made her WWE debut at WrestleMania 34 this past April.
"The only thing I've told her is to just have fun," Punk said. "I don't know what it's like back there in this current environment. I know she'd probably get treated differently, just as like I know I get probably treated differently here. The only thing I ever told her is that I know you've got a lot of people telling you, 'do this, don't do this.' I just said, whatever you do, when you go out there for WrestleMania, make sure you have fun. Period."
Punk noted that he did not watch Rousey's WrestleMania match, where she teamed with Kurt Angle to defeat Triple H and Stephanie McMahon, although he saw some clips "here and there." He noted that it's hard for him to watch WWE because of how overproduced it has gotten.
"When I say it's hard for me to watch wrestling, it's not like an anxiety thing, it's not like, 'I can't do it!' I literally can't get through eight seconds without being like, 'OK, I'm bored, I gotta watch something else.' They've got like... it's like going to a baseball game at CitiField. I like Wrigley Field, it's old school. Going to a baseball game at CitiField, it's like a guy takes ball four and they blow off fireworks and there's LED screens on everything and wrestling now is completely like that. There's LED screens everywhere and there's flashing lights and I feel like I'm gonna have like a seizure."
Punk noted that he doesn't watch wrestling outside of WWE either, stating that there's a "disconnect."
"I don't know why," Punk stated. "Subconsciously, there's like a disconnect. I see clips of stuff, like I know Kenny Omega is the hot guy and he's probably one of the better guys in the world right now, but it's the same thing. I'll watch clips of matches, I don't see myself watching like a full match. I just can't do it."
Punk said that today's product is too glossy, but it's been that way for awhile. He noted that he liked the old school pro wrestling feel at house shows back in the day.
"I think it's definitely too glossy, but it's been like that for a very long time," Punk said. "My jam was house shows before they started calling them live events, where it was a curtain and a ring and a light above the ring. That was my jam, that was my world, that was where I liked to thrive."
When asked if he preferred the PWG-style more, Punk said that the promotion was very different when he worked there, adding that he might have had the worst PWG match of all time.
We will have live round-by-round coverage of UFC 225 this Saturday, followed by a special Saturday night edition of the Wrestling Inc. podcast with Matt Morgan, Chris Featherstone and myself discussing Punk's UFC return, NJPW Dominion and more.