Skysports.com caught up with Mr Money In The Bank CM Punk ahead of Judgement Day, which is live on Sky Box Office on May 17.
The two-time Money In The Bank winner has yet to cash in his championship challenging contract, with Umaga the latest fighter to stand in his way.
And as Punk concludes his preparation for the match with the Samoan Bulldozer, Skysports.com caught up with the Straightedge Superstar to talk about his rapid rise up the WWE ladder, and the bumps he has taken along the way.
Here is an preview:
Q: Which wrestler did you most admire growing up? Who was an inspiration?
A: That’s a hard question to answer because there are so many. Shawn Michaels is definitely one and he is pretty relevant because he’s still with the company. Ricky Steamboat and Bret Hart as well, those three guys are probably the big ones.
Q: Was there a particular moment or match where you thought ‘this is it, this is what I want to do’?
A: Ever since I can remember remembering this is what I have wanted to do. This is the only thing I have ever wanted to do. I generally equate watching Rowdy Piper smash a coconut over Jimmy Snuka’s head thinking ‘wow I want to smash stuff over people’s heads and get paid for it’.
Q: Do you think it’s important to keep the old and new breed together in the business? How do you see that going forwards?
A: There are plenty of veterans involved that don’t actively wrestle: Arn Anderson, Ricky Steamboat, even though he just competed at WrestleMania and Backlash, Mike Rotunda [aka Irwin R.Schyster], Dean Malenko. These guys are still around even though they’re not in the ring, they’re still there with their wealth of knowledge and they’re there for the young guys to pick their brains. It’s important to have the connection with the past. Without them and what they did we’re nothing.
Q: Mickey Rourke’s film ‘The Wrestler’ highlighted some of the brutal realities of wrestling and I was just wondering how many times do you fight a week? How do you cope with that strain on your body physically?
A: Normally in the States it’s four times a week. Physically you’ve got to stay in shape. I stretch, I work out, I drink a lot of water and I try to eat right.
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Punk was featured on WWE Superstars but did not make an appearance. Click on the thumbnails to view the screen captures.
CM Punk looked to finish what he started last week as it was announced early in the night that Edge would defend his championship against the Straightedge Superstar himself, tonight! After a dive to the outside and a few well placed knees to the face it seemed Punk wouldn’t need his Money in the Bank after all.
However, a match that started in an exchange of blows, ended less than favourably. Unable to defeat Punk, Edge was defenseless and eventually forced from the ring. Sensing he was being out wrestled left a sour taste in the World Champions mouth, the Rated R Superstar saw his only option, he voluntarily walked away and lost via count out. By doing so he retained his title.
After being awarded the victory, CM Punk failed to realize he exposed the target on his back. With his back turned the Samoan Bulldozer, Umaga, attacked Punk for the second week in a row! Edge watched as Umaga laid CM Punk out with a Samoan Spike. But it would be Punk who got the last laugh as it was announced later, Umaga would be facing CM Punk at Judgement Day!
On wwe.com when CM Punk was asked which WWE Legend he feels he is most like, he went with Bret Hart.
I think it may sound egotistical to liken yourself to any WWE Legend, but if I there was anybody to liken myself to, it was a guy like Bret “Hit Man” Hart, who was more about what he did in the ring than outside the ring. There are a lot of similarities between he and I. I’m not the biggest guy, I’m not the fatest, I’m not the smartest. I’m a jack of all trades, a little bit of everything. I’d like to think I bring at least that to the table.