CM Punk reportedly turned down significant money from AEW, according to Bryan Alvarez on Wrestling Observer Live.
Punk did actually have talks with AEW, despite what has been said in the media, and he met in person with AEW President & CEO Tony Khan, according to Alvarez. There's no word yet on details of AEW's offer, but Khan reportedly offered "a lot of money" to the former WWE Champion.
There's been no update on Punk possibly returning to the ring for WWE, but turning down the AEW deal could be a sign that he has no plan for an in-ring future.
Punk is signed to a FOX deal, not WWE. It's been reported that Punk's agents contacted FOX a few months back, which led to the initial tryout in Los Angeles, where the show is filmed each week. WWE did give their blessing to the hire, but this was a FOX decision.
As seen in the tweet from FOX Sports PR below, "CM Punk" and "WWE Backstage" trended #1 and #2 worldwide on Twitter. The return had more than 5.5 million video views across the FOX Sports social media platforms, and counting. This was also the most re-tweeted post of the year on any FOX Sports account.
As we've noted, Punk appeared at the end of this week's Backstage episode after being introduced by host Renee Young. It was later announced that the former WWE Champion will appear as a Special Contributor and Analyst beginning next week, making "select appearances" in the studio alongside host Renee and analyst WWE Hall of Famer Booker T.
Stay tuned for updates on Punk working on WWE Backstage, and a potential return to the WWE ring.
.@CMPunk #1 trend worldwide ?#WWEBackstage #2 trend worldwide ?— FOX Sports PR (@FOXSportsPR) November 13, 2019
Tune in next week for @CMPunk, @ReneeYoungWWE, @BookerT5x and more
??: WWE BACKSTAGE - Tues., 11/19, 11:00 PM ET, @FS1 pic.twitter.com/J872z44d5j