In an interview with Sports Illustrated, quickly after the taping of Rampage was over and done with, and the show went off the air, Khan was asked about what he thought of Episode 1 of AEW Rampage. The discussion also went to where it was undoubtedly headed all along…to the place where everyone’s mind is at right now in this industry, and that is upon the one and only CM Punk.
So much hype has been built up around his return to professional wrestling (we’ve covered quite a bit of that hype ourselves, here at Pro Wrestling News Hub); it was no wonder his interview went in that direction, as I’ve stated.
CM Punk, himself has been very vague about the rumors, but hilariously so. He has been interviewed and asked about it and has done a better job of dancing around it than Gene Kelly would have done in a torrential downpour (“I’m singing in the rain…”).
But the feeling that he will be there is indeed palpable in the air surrounding AEW, and especially in all the press they’ve done and are doing. If reading between the lines of what Punk has said publically and in Khan’s statements as well, there’s that promise that something very special is coming next week to Chicago for sure.
“…Next week’s Rampage is ‘The First Dance’, and I think everyone knows what to expect—and everyone is very excited. We built a foundation here for what you’re going to see next week. This was a huge premiere, and there is tons of anticipation for next week in Chicago…”via Sports Illustrated
When he was asked if the legendary CM Punk would be there, he had this to slyly add to his statements:
“…I can’t answer that question…But it’s a very good question to ask…”via Sports Illustrated
Instead, Khan hyped next week’s episode of Dynamite:
“Next week is our most stacked Dynamite card…It’s the fifth and final ‘Labor of Jericho’, which is a huge match of MJF vs Chris Jericho. Jurassic Express challenges the Young Bucks for the tag team titles, Sammy Guevara is going to make a huge announcement…And it’s also the night of Sting’s first wrestling match on TNT in over 20 years, since the final Nitro when he beat Ric Flair in the final night of WCW history. That’s a huge milestone, and they’re wrestling a team in 2.0 that has made a great start in AEW. Then we’ll come right back on Friday for ‘The First Dance’ Rampage, which is going to be the most anticipated television event we’ve ever done…”via Sports Illustrated
I find it very interesting that Khan included Ric Flair in his comments as well.
The very first episode of Rampage saw a massive title change in Christian Cage acquiring the TNA and Impact titles from Kenny Omega, and they saw Dr. Britt Baker retain her AEW Women’s World Championship against Red Velvet… and she did it all with a “freaking broken wrist,” no less, as she herself (Baker) promised before the match.
Tony Khan spoke about the episode in detail in the same interview with Spots Illustrated:
“…This was one of the biggest nights in the history of the company, and it was a great show…We went in with a tremendous card of three championship matches and a plan to deliver the best one-hour wrestling TV show anyone’s seen in a very long time. We needed to hit a home run, and we did. Everyone across the board, including production and staff, did a tremendous job…We highlighted our people, and that led to great moments…Tonight was all about showing fans the top stars of AEW, ones that are becoming mainstream names in wrestling and even outside of it, too…”via Sports Illustrated