Soon after Brock Lesnar returned to WWE at SummerSlam, there were reports that The Beast’s return was “a last minute deal” that was put together for a number of reasons, all in some form related to John Cena leaving WWE again, and CM Punk signing with AEW.
During his recent appearance on The Wrestling Inc. Daily, WWE Hall of Famer Kurt Angle was asked if believes WWE brought back Lesnar to counter the buzz AEW generated by Punk’s debut.
“Anytime you bring in Brock Lesnar, it’s a huge deal,” Angle said. “So, yes, it definitely took away some of the buzz that was created when CM Punk and possibly Daniel Bryan joined AEW. But those two are big names, too. I think WWE did enough damage control by bringing Lesnar in, that I don’t think it [Punk joining AEW] will affect them much. But, they did lose Bryan and Punk, who I’m guessing was never going back to WWE, so that didn’t really matter.”
When asked to comment on CM Punk returning to pro wrestling after a 7-year hiatus, Angle wished the new AEW signee nothing but success.
“Well, I think it’s great for wrestling,” Angle admitted. “CM Punk is a huge name. He had an incredible impact on pro wrestling when he was with the WWE. So, he he made a great name for himself. If he wants to return, all the best to him. Good luck.”
Wrestling Inc. Managing Editor Nick Hausman then asked Angle if he regrets never having a match with AEW TNT Champion Miro. Angle and Miro have previously spoken about wanting to wrestle each other.
“Yes, I really did want that, and I know he did too,” Angle said. “Unfortunately, it never happened. At the time we wanted it to occur, WWE wasn’t looking at me. They wanted to see if I could stay out of trouble for a couple more years (laughs). I got one too many DUIs and had a problem with alcohol and painkillers. Fortunately, I got myself through that, and cleaned up my act.
“And by the time I returned to WWE (in 2017), I was probably a little too old to produce the way I used to. The reason I retired early is because I wasn’t at the level I was in my prime. I know I had lost a step, and that’s why decided to retire.”
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