In his final interview before going into the WWE Hall of Fame, Bruno Sammartino spoke with Inside The Ropes. Here is what he had to say about CM Punk:
What he thinks of CM Punk as a performer: “I think his interviews for a villain…I think he’s very, very good. That’s why it surprised me that Billy Graham would say anything when he used to be a villain who would say things to put down his opponents, even myself. I think he does a very good job when he gets on the microphone, how he talks, how he says it. I took no offence at CM Punk, I know he was doing it to be a villain, that’s what he does. But I think he does a very good job when he gets on that microphone as a villain, what he says, how he talks, how he says it. As a villain I think he does a tremendous job and as a wrestler, I’ve seen him a few times and I think he’s pretty darn good. He’s not too bad at all. The only thing is I think if he was in my era, he would be a little bit too small, we had bigger built guys back then.”
— Living Colour (@LivingColour) April 4, 2013
— CM Punk (@CMPunk) April 4, 2013
The 20 coolest tattoos in WWE history #4. CM Punk | Tattoo: Skull & snake | Location: Chest
To pick only one of CM Punk’s pieces to showcase might be an exercise in futility. Practically every inch of The Best in the World’s upper body is covered with tattoos, each with its own unique story worth telling. And while Punk’s word tattoos such as “drug free” and “straight edge” seemingly attract the most attention due to his image, it’s the dangerous combo of skull and snake across his chest that’s immediately eye-catching on first glance, partially because of how fresh that ink still is.
When asked for his take on getting tattoos, The Straight Edge Superstar once told WWE.com: “Tattoos are like wearing your heart on your sleeve. It’s about showing who you are on the inside by showing it on the outside. … Each tattoo you get should have some deep, deep meaning.”
We couldn’t have said it better ourselves, Punk.
As confirmed yesterday, WWE Champion CM Punk has been cleared for in-ring action by WWE physician, Dr. Michael Sampson, four weeks after undergoing knee surgery (STORY). Consequently, he’ll defend his title as promised in a long-gestating Tables, Ladders & Chairs Match against Ryback on Jan. 7, the first Raw of 2013. The news came as somewhat of a surprise, given The Straight Edge Superstar’s status was in doubt as recently as New Year’s Eve, when Punk’s personal physician refused to clear the champion for active duty. But now that the word has come down from on high and Punk is set to return to the ring, it seems a few weeks on the bench hasn’t cost The Voice of the Voiceless any of his trademark confidence.
“‘WWE sources’ can kiss my a**,” the champion said in a pointed statement regarding the initial, unconfirmed report that cleared him for duty. “Of course I’ll be cleared. Of course I’ll wrestle Ryback in a TLC Match. Of course I’ll win.”
Punk’s associate, Paul Heyman, was a bit more loquacious if not respectful of WWE sources and management in his own response. Despite Punk’s return absolving “The Voice of the Voice of the Voiceless” of having to face Ryback himself (Mr. McMahon named Heyman as Ryback’s replacement opponent if Punk was still not medically cleared to compete), the ECW mastermind had no positive sentiment on the verdict that will send the champion back to the front lines.
“In an obvious effort to appease the WWE Board of Directors, the Chairman of the Board has once again publicly demonstrated his vulgar obsession with denying the WWE Universe of its rightful undisputed reigning defending champion,” Heyman said in a statement. “Vince McMahon’s unconscionable tactics now include forcing CM Punk, less than 30 days post-surgery, to defend this industry’s most prestigious championship in a barbaric match known as TLC. The description ‘flesh-peddling promoter’for Vince McMahon is a terrible understatement. The medical clearance is a sham, and it is apparent this corruption starts at the top.”
Despite the duo’s bile, however, one thing is certain: Sampson’s word is final, and the time for statements and sources will soon be at an end as the bell starts the TLC Match against Ryback and tolls for the defending WWE Champion on Jan. 7.
As WWE Champion CM Punk’s potential title defense against Ryback approaches on the Jan. 7 edition of Monday Night Raw, WWE.com sources indicate that The Straight Edge Superstar has been medically cleared for in-ring competition several weeks after his undergoing knee surgery. The decision, if confirmed, returns Punk to action effective immediately, meaning he will defend his championship as scheduled in a Tables, Ladders & Chairs Match against Ryback.
The bout had originally been scheduled for the WWE TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs pay-per-view, but Punk’s sudden trip under the knife suspended that contest until the champion was fully recuperated. His status was in doubt as recent as Dec. 31, when his recovery timeline from the procedure was called into question by Punk’s personal physician (WATCH). WWE Chairman Mr. McMahon had gone so far as to schedule a potential replacement match should Punk prove unable to compete, but pending approval, it appears The Chairman’s worries are assuaged.
Our sources also indicate that a final decision on the champion’s status will be presented to the WWE Universe on WWE Main Event tonight at 8/7 CT on ION Television.