cm punk
Photo Credit: All Elite Wrestling

CM Punk Says He Quit AEW At AEW All In, Opens Up About Jack Perry Incident

CM Punk shares his side of the backstage incident at AEW All In that led to his termination from the company.

Speaking with Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour, CM Punk was asked about Jack Perry’s “real glass” line at AEW All In, which led to their infamous confrontation.

“I was in my locker room.” [Helwani asks if he feels that was directed at him.] Yes. It obviously was directed at me,” CM Punk said. “There’s all these rumors about NDAs. There’s a big difference between not being allowed to talk about some shit, or just not wanting to talk about some shit. I don’t necessarily want to litigate this again.”

CM Punk Asked To Be Let Go Before AEW Collision

CM Punk went on to open up about how he asked for his release before AEW Collision launched. He then recalled the incident with Jack Perry

“Tony’s big idea was separate show, we’re gonna separate everybody. I said,’ That’ll never work. Just let me go, just get me out of here.’ Just pay me my money,” CM Punk said. “I’ve already been off TV, I hurt this arm, just get me out of here. ‘No, I can’t let you go.’ Why? Just let me go. Who cares? It’s best. These guys don’t want me here. This isn’t a real business. This isn’t a real business, this isn’t a business predicated on making money, drawing money, selling tickets, doing business. It’s not what it’s sold to me as. ‘No, can’t let you go. I’m gonna do this new show.’ Then the second day we have this show, I’m sitting in catering, minding my own business, and Tony Schiavone comes and gets me. He’s like, ‘Hey, I really need your help.’ I was like, ‘What?’

“He’s like, Jack is cussing me out, and he’s cussed out Mike Penciri and he cussed out Daryl from production, and he’s cussing out the doctor right now. I was immediately like, dude isn’t supposed to be here.”

CM Punk On Initial Incident With Jack Perry

CM Punk continued by describing how he handled the incident with Jack Perry, and he did not think that it would be a problem.

“I was told people are getting separated so there’s not problems, and you don’t want me involved in this,” CM Punk said. “Just like everything else I’ve explained before, y’all need to handle this. Because if you don’t, I’m gonna handle it, and you’re not gonna like the way I handle it. Prophetic words. He’s begging me, and he drags me out of catering. I go up. HOOK and Jackie are doing an angle. I don’t know anything about Jack going on vacation. All I know is, there’s a litany of people that, they work one day a week, and they don’t want to. They want to show up and wrestle and then film vignettes, and then sit at home for four weeks. Great. Not my company. Do what you want. But not on my show. That was my attitude.

“I did, ‘Tony, you really want me doing this?’ Yeah. I walked up to Jack, and he was sitting in a rental car. What he wanted to do was smash the window of the rental car with a pipe. I was just like, it’s a rental car. I very politely, because I like Jack, I was just like, docs told you no, Daryl’s told you no, Mike’s told you no, Schiavone’s told you no, and now I have to tell you no. Apparently, you’ve cussed them all out, so I’m telling you no. We don’t do that here. You want to do this, go to Wednesday and do it. He has no problem. He said, ‘Okay. I just thought it was a really cool idea.’ I said it might be, but this is a rental car.

“The boys rent it for the boys. You’re gonna smash the window of a rental car, and you’re gonna return it with no window? Now national budget Hertz is gonna be like, don’t rent cars to pro wrestlers anymore. This is a thing that’s happened. So I wasn’t trying to throw my weight around. I wasn’t like, this is my show.’ I was just like, ‘This is f**king dumb.’ He wanted to do it so he didn’t have to fly back to Canada. Sorry, man. We’re privileged to be in this business. We’re privileged to do this for a living.

“I get it. I used to be that kid that was like young and I wanted to do it. But there’s a safe way to do it. I politely explained that to him. I didn’t raise my voice. I didn’t cuss at him. I was just like, ‘We don’t do that here. This is Saturday.  It’s a different show. You want to do stuff like this, do it on Wednesday.’ That was it. I didn’t think there was gonna be a problem. He obviously took something very business-minded very personally, and that’s fine. Because I’ve done that before too. But it’s very much who he’s friends with. Shit never got squashed. Nobody’s in charge, and it turned into what it turned into.”

CM Punk On All In Incident With Jack Perry

CM Punk then recalled what happened backstage with Jack Perry at AEW All In.

“I went to Tony [Khan], and I was like, please handle that, please,” CM Punk said. “He was like, ‘What do you want me to do?’ I was like, I’m not telling you what to do. Just be the boss, please.’ I’m tired of this shit.’ I told you this was a mistake, I told you separate shows wasn’t gonna work, and now we’re all here. Please, handle it. Because if you don’t, you’re not gonna like the way I handle it. [Helwani asked of Khan handled it] No. [Helwani asks if Punk did]. Yeah. Jack came back from his match. I was the best match. I’m sitting there. I got people with me. I got a lot of friends who work there, and I wish them all well. I walk up to him, and I’m just like, Jack, why do you insist on doing this dumb internet shit on TV? He’s just like, ‘If you got a problem about it, do something about it.’ I was just like, ‘Come on, man. I could fucking kill you. What are we doing?’

“Sometimes, it’s like, can’t let you get close. You know? I thought I was doing the responsible thing. I didn’t punch anybody. I just choked somebody a little bit. Samoa Joe was there, told me to stop, and then I quit. I turned to Tony, and I said, ‘This place is a f**cking joke, man. You’re a clown, I quit.’ I went to my room, and then Joe and Jerry Lynn came and got me, and there’re like, ‘Let’s just go out there and kill it.’ I was just too fired up, and I’m fired up now, and I’m probably gonna regret talking about all this shit, but that’s what happened.”

CM Punk then stated that he stayed for a bit and watched some of the show, but he left when he felt like it would make security’s job easier. Punk stated that he went back to his hotel room. When asked whether he talked to Khan to officially say he was done, Punk said he did not, as they did not speak after All In.

CM Punk On Tony Khan Saying He Feared For His Life

CM Punk was then asked about Tony Khan saying he feared for his life during the backstage incident with Punk at AW All In.

“I can’t tell you what Tony felt or what he was thinking, but I never did anything that would make him fear for his life,” Punk said. “He’s who he is. [Helwani asked if he felt like his reputation was being slandered] Of course. There was a concerted effort to slander me and try to ruin my character and stuff like that.

“That’s kind of the genesis of all the drama. Don’t do that. Why are you doing that to a guy that works for your company? Why are you lying? Why are you spreading rumors and lies and bullshit about your top guy? It doesn’t make any sense. You’re only hurting yourself. I don’t really know. It’s an unfortunate situation. I have a lot of friends there, there’s a lot of good people that work there. I hope they continue to get paid, and I wish them well.”

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