Cody Rhodes and The Young Bucks are pulling out all the stops for their upcoming All In show in Chicago. The September 1st event sold out in less than thirty minutes and it will include some of the biggest names in independent wrestling. While CM Punk will be doing a meet and greet appearance in Chicago the day before the show, Punk is not scheduled to be at All In.
Wrestling Inc. President Raj Giri spoke to Cody this morning about Punk's absence from All In. Cody revealed that Matt Jackson made an overture to Punk about appearing at the event. The Second City Savior seems set in his ways and focused on MMA at this stage in his career. Cody spoke of Punk's "mythical presence" and said that he thought it would be a good idea for the former WWE Champion to reconnect with the fans.
"Yes, I mean I talked to [Punk] just vaguely," Rhodes said. "He even at one point said 'nobody's asked me -- hey here's how much we'll pay you and here's who you'll wrestle.'
"Matt [Jackson] actually made a full offer or full pitch for his services and I think Punk is focused on the Mixed Martial Arts element of his career. One of the reasons we didn't first come out and say, 'here's who we want you to wrestle,' because I think we just wanted him to be a part of the event for a lot of fans, he's captured their imagination even with the amount of time he's been gone. He has a mythical presence to them. I thought it would be good for him to connect with them, but that's me, you know?
"Nobody owns Punk but Punk, so if he wants to do Mixed Martial Arts, go for it. He was always very nice to me and helpful to me in OVW. I always looked at All In with the perspective that it's about the present and future of the industry and not really about cheap pops, even though I'm sure they'll be plenty of those on the show. Matt had reached out to [Punk] and made him a real offer. I think Punk is set on not being part of it."
WGN America is airing the All In: Zero Hour live before the event, which will bring a lot of eyes to the Sears Centre on September 1st. Rhodes expanded on how big of a deal it will be to spread awareness of the All In event. Rhodes also said they plan on booking the Zero Hour show as a separate portion of the All In event entirely.
"You know they've got a channel that reaches seventy-seven million homes," Rhodes said of WGN. "So penetration is there and you're talking about the milestone of two big arena shows that wrestling is returning to TV and it's not WWE and to be nationwide.
"That's why we decided this isn't going to be a preshow, this is just going to be a different part of the show. The Zero Hour portion of All In that's how it came about.
"The aptly named Over Budget Battle Royal which will have over fifteen competitors, I don't know why I listed fifteen. I'm really looking forward to that for the ROH Title shot later."
Rhodes spoke about the thought process he went through when deciding who would get a chance to be in the Over Budget Battle Royal. He said it came down to finances as he had to sell off some important material to even afford the Over Budget Battle Royal.
"It's more about maybe be young and hungry," Rhodes said. "Obviously there's a legend like Billy Gunn in there and you have a few individuals of that credibility in there, but it's more about people who reached out to us and said they wanted to be part of it, and how can they be part of it. It's also difficult to get anybody really expensive because the facility found everything you see on the ring, the apron, the skirts, the buckles, I sold those goods to pay for the Over Budget Battle Royal."