For over years, CM Punk has been the subject of many rumors within the pro wrestling industry. With AEW trying to court him, and Punk actually visiting the FOX set for WWE's new show, the rumors have heated up.
Speaking on Barstool Sports' My Mom's Basement podcast, Punk discussed how his experience in the pro wrestling ring helped his acting career. The idea of doing multiple takes is different compared to live TV. It relates to keeping an audience whenever you are doing a promo in the ring.
"I think one of the reasons people thought I was good at pro wrestling is because I believed everything I said and did," Punk stated. "You can watch other wrestlers and the audience can, maybe subconsciously, but they'll see through certain people. If you don't believe what you are saying, you've lost your audience, they aren't going to care. I definitely think that helped me, acting-wise, get into character. I'm not Christian Bale where I'm a method actor and I'm going to try and stay in character all the time. Because of pro wrestling, when I see the red light go on, I'm on and I'm ready to go."
"WWE Backstage" is a studio show hosted by Renee Young and Booker T on FS1. It the latest example of the partnership between WWE and FOX. Punk's "audition" for the program was simple, but it was a true homecoming for him.
"I did the FOX thing," Punk continued. "They asked me to come out and I was already in LA, so I went into the FOX studios. I guess you could call it an audition? I haven't heard a thing. Renee Young and Booker T, I haven't seen either of them in five+ years. I think Renee is great, that's the kind of thing she is built for. Booker, to me, he's Booker; he's always laughing and he's good for that kind of role."
While he hasn't had the best luck fighting in MMA (0-2), Punk has utilized his skills as a talker in the sport. He currently does commentary for Cage Fury Fighting Championships.
"It is the best jobs I got, I love it to death," Punk said when talking about commentary. While injured with WWE, he sat at the commentary desk for RAW and NXT.
While WWE will be involved in aspects of the FOX show, Punk was told he wouldn't have anything to worry about. He was also told how important he would be for the organization.
"I was told WWE wasn't involved, but who knows? It could be why I haven't heard anything yet," Punk continued. "I made it very clear to them that if I landed this I wouldn't be there just to sh*t on everything, because nobody wants to watch that. The way they approached me with it was like, 'We have A-Rod for baseball, Troy Aikman for FOX and we would have you for wrestling. That would be your authority. You've been there, you've done the WrestleMania's, you've been the champion. We would like for you to be the analyst.' I thought it was kind of interesting."
When it comes to the rumors, many haven't been real, but several folks roll with it for the publicity. When it comes to who he is, Punk tries to be as authentic as possible. He also dismisses what he doesn't like about commentary in the sports world.
"I look at guys in the sports world like Stephen A. Smith, who I feel is just a complete gimmick," said Punk. "Yelling and screaming, and he gets paid probably like $10 million a year or something. I don't want to do that because I really despise it. Somebody will say something about me and then I'll see them in public, and when I ask what's the problem they'll be like, 'Oh no brother, we're just working' and I'm like no, we're not. You're caught. We're not going to fight, I'm just going to have to cross you off my Christmas list."
The idea of being an analyst enticed Punk. Something that concerned him, however, was whether or not he could be his authentic self. Not shy to be outspoken and judge something he doesn't like, he may have to do that when it comes to WWE programming. If it is indeed FOX and not WWE controlling it, and if they want it to be like an MLB or NFL analyst role, he can't fake it.
"The FOX thing to me was interesting based on that. I'd be an analyst, that sounds great," Punk stated. "Let's be honest, if they (WWE) do something bad, I'm not going to be able to toe the company line. I'll be like, 'Jeez, that was... great.' I just can't do that, and I expressed that to FOX. I stated that if that was the case, I'm not interested."
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit My Mom's Basement with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.