CM Punk appeared on Collider Live to promote his new horror movie, Girl on the Third Floor. Punk discussed being a fan of the genre, and also talked about comics and comic book movies.
Eventually the conversation turned to pro wrestling. Punk was asked about reports that he tried out for the new “WWE Backstage” studio show on FS1, which he confirmed.
“Yeah I did it,” Punk confirmed. “I’m very much in a position where, ‘Well come talk to me.’
“I’m open to anything,” Punk continued, before adding that it does not necessarily include wrestling. “If they come to me with, ‘Hey we want you to wrestle,’ I’ll say, ‘um, I’m not interested’.”
Punk noted that he’s changed since his last stint with WWE, which ended with a lot of bad blood in 2014.
“I’ve grown so much as a person and I look back at all the stuff and I don’t need it. I don’t need the confrontation and I don’t need the drama,” Punk said. “But I’m a businessman. I also put my morals and my integrity above business deals.”
Punk said that while he puts his morals about business, he will be open to the right deal.
“If you want me to do anything, well OK, come talk to me but don’t waste my time,” Punk stated.
Punk admitted that he doesn’t have specifics or numbers in mind regarding what the right deal may be. He noted that his agents contacted him about trying out and he knew that FOX spent a lot of money for the new WWE rights deal. Punk originally thought that the billions that FOX was spending was for the whole WWE package, and was surprised to learn it was just for SmackDown. He said that with all the money that FOX is spending for WWE, they’re looking at trying different things.
“Ratings are still dipping and that’s been happening for 20+ years,” Punk noted. “Trust me, I’m not saying that it’s because I’m not there or anything like that. When I was there and I was on top, RAW was doing 3.8’s and I was getting blamed for it, like that’s a bad rating. Now they would f–king kill to have a 3.8!
“My agents just called me and FOX is throwing everything at this because they spent a lot of money on this and they’re all in to make it work. Originally I thought it was a WWE thing, so I was just like, ‘meh, no.’ But then they said, ‘this is FOX.'”
Punk said that he is not dealing with WWE. He noted that if he were to do the job, he would call it down the line, but he would not pretend like something isn’t bad if it is.
“I’m not dealing with anybody in WWE,” Punk said. “They explained to me what it was and I love Renee Young. Renee Young is a great person… she’s Canadian, so obviously she’s super over-the-top nice and friendly. I prefaced it with, ‘Guys, I’m not going to come in and dump all over stuff just to dump on it. That’s old Phil. But if it’s bad, I’m not going to be able to pretend it’s anything but bad.’
“So they want to present it like it’s a real sport and just have a show that recaps stuff, just like they do with the NFL, just like the NHL Network would do with hockey games and stuff like that. That’s where we are with that.”
Regarding if anyone from WWE has reached out to him since the tryout, Punk joked, “No, I’m the boogeyman!”
You can watch the interview in the video above. If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Collider Live with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.