Former 2-time AEW World Champion CM Punk was released from the company this past Saturday following a number of reports that Punk had a physical backstage altercation with Jack Perry as well as how he was lunging at AEW President and CEO Tony Khan after the altercation. The former 2-time AEW World Champion also had a heated confrontation with Khan immediately after the incident and threatened to quit the company in the moment after the incident, which the AEW President said he feared for his safety.
Since then, the pro wrestling world has been speculating that Punk might return to WWE when he’s free and clear in case there is a non-compete clause in place as part of his AEW termination. According to Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful Select, people close to former 2-time AEW World Champion CM Punk stated that the idea of him working with the WWE was on the table once again as it was earlier this year. It was noted on the report that Punk was open to leaving All Elite Wrestling around December of last year and was open to the idea of returning to the WWE at the 2023 Royal Rumble Event this past January.
There’s no word yet on if the WWE was interested in bringing in Punk at the time or if AEW was open to the idea of releasing The Best In The World, but the rumored idea was that Punk would make his WWE return at the 2023 Royal Rumble Event and face the person who would eliminate him in the 30-Man Royal Rumble Match in the main event of WrestleMania 39 Night One and that person is Kevin Owens.
It has not been confirmed whether this rumored idea was something WWE was really considering, but the idea did make its way to the locker room. After being suspended and sidelined following the backstage brawl at All Out last year and the surgery he needed to get, Punk returned to AEW TV in June as he was still under contract with the promotion. Punk went to a WWE RAW Event earlier this year, where he visited with friends, had a talk with The Miz and even met with Triple H before being asked to leave.