A dream match in its own right, yes, but was CM Punk vs. Samoa Joe the right match for All In? We’ve just seen this match. Is it too soon and a wee bit of the same old to see it again?
Especially when you consider that AEW gave us Bryan Danielson vs. Kenny Omega only once? Food for thought, dear readers.
And of that match we were given of Punk vs. Joe, it was indeed a masterpiece and revisiting it again should have definitely been in the cards, but perhaps not this soon, especially when fans were probably expecting an end to the culminating heat between Punk and certain members of the Elite.
What Vince McMahon would have called the perfect opportunity to establish the momentum needed for a match between the parties involved and all because of the real-life feud between Punk and the Elite. Now talk about build.
It was all there—everything needed; all the pieces of the puzzle, so to speak—but as per reports, only one single party was ready to work and move on from all the turmoil that came to a head at the All Out media scrum last fall.
That would be the man that had the most to say at the time; none other than CM Punk himself…the one with the sharpest sword.
After a controversial exit and injury leave, Punk did return and he now headlines AEW’s Saturday show, Collision, but is he expected to feud with only a limited amount of wrestlers that wrestle just for that show? Or can we expect things to broaden slightly as time passes? It’s all a big mystery right now, but Punk had a few words to say on Collision and how it’s a “team effort,” a few weeks back, as per a piece at Sports Illustrated.
“Collision is on a bad night for television, but the trade off is that I think it’s a lot easier to sell a ticket to a Saturday night show than it is on a Wednesday or Monday or Friday…I knew it was going to be an uphill battle, but we absolutely love the challenge. I think we’ve outdone ourselves so far…It’s a team effort…FTR is a big part of it. There is a group of people I want highlighted on Collision almost every Saturday…
It’s a lot of people and it’s hard to get them in there, but it’s FTR, Samoa Joe, Jay White and Juice, the Gunns, Ricky Starks, all three members of House of Black, Andrade, and we just got Rush…I want him on Collision, too–Hobbs, Miro, and I don’t want to forget anyone else…
Give me a Statlander every week; give me a Toni Storm every week. That’s what is going to drive repeat viewers, knowing they’ll see these people every Saturday. That’s how we’ll hold a rating. It’s 100 percent a team effort…We want to bring new people up…It’s not about me at all, it’s about us…It’s not just me on Collision. It’s not one single person. Sure, there is numerical evidence that points to people selling the most merchandise and doing everything else…
From my perspective, I have to go out there and be excellent because I expect excellence out of everybody else. Dax expects that out of me, and I expect it out of Ricky, who expects it out of Hobbs, who expects it out of Miro. We’re trying to build something out of this show. I’m pleasantly surprised so far that we are doing just that.”
We have gotten some epic moments out of Punk, but really that was to be expected. The man delivered the most revenue for AEW since his return to pro wrestling with his debut for the company back in 2021. Since then it’s been a roller coaster ride, but episodes of Collision have delivered on that big show feel, that big fight feel every night.
We’ve seen Ricky Starks step up in ways we all knew he could and as per the aforementioned match with Samoa Joe and Punk, we were given something we hadn’t seen in 18 years… a rivalry that was reignited and culminated in an epic match between the two and on Collision, but that brings us back to All In.
For months after the All Out media scrum incident and resulting controversy, many, including premiere pro wrestling and sports journalist, Dave Meltzer of The Wrestling Observer Newsletter, stated that many members of the AEW roster, which included Chris Jericho and of course The Elite and others didn’t want to work with Punk if he was ever to return.
This was only proven when Tony Khan announced the premiere episode of Collision, which CM Punk was to headline.
It was now in a way obvious to one and all that the beef was as real as could be, and the rumors circulating that The Elite (and others) didn’t want to have anything to do with Punk were also validated with the sudden segregation of the roster.
To this day, the consensus is that the Elite still do not want to speak to Punk and are unwilling to work things out, and thus we are left with a repetitive match at All In for the legendary CM Punk and Samoa Joe, and perhaps each could have had better feuds…Miro and Joe would have been epic, and perhaps a triple threat between Adam Cole, MJF and Punk would have indeed also been equally epic for the World Heavyweight Championship (perhaps even throw Adam Page into that one and we could have had an incredible build for a match worthy of some attention and hype).
But alas this is what we’re left with, folks….something that is both sweet and bitter all at the same time.
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