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CM Punk Wants to Keep Working With Young Stars Like Powerhouse Hobbs

Sports Illustrated
Sports Illustrated

“This is my Lazarus Pit, this is my fountain of youth and I’m going to wrestle the young guys as long as I can.”

CM Punk will step into a wrestling ring on cable television Friday night on Rampage . Maybe 2021 isn’t so bad after all.

Punk, who made his AEW debut last month in Chicago, had his first match with the company at All Out on Sept. 5 against Darby Allin. His match against Powerhouse Hobbs will be his first on cable TV since he defeated Billy Gunn on the Jan. 20, 2014, episode of Raw .

AEW continues to infuse new life into professional wrestling, with Punk at the forefront. And not only is he back in wrestling on a weekly basis but he is also living up to his vow to make the industry a better place—which he does in a number of ways, especially highlighting young, emerging stars.

Punk helped shine a brighter spotlight on Allin at All Out than he ever had in his career, and the opportunity will be the same for Hobbs on Rampage .

“The naked eye shows these guys are oozing with potential,” Punk says. “The list of young guys like that in AEW is staggering. For so long, I saw people in an office position and go, ‘This is the guy,’ instead of saying, ‘These are the people.’ That’s the animus of wrestling Powerhouse Hobbs or Darby Allin, and I think Brian Pillman Jr. is another one of those guys. They have this raw charisma; they have ‘it.’ That’s been lacking in our industry for so long, and AEW is capitalizing on all of that star power.”

Phil Brooks (aka Punk) is a creative individual, with a gift of storytelling. Even after seven years away from pro wrestling, he remains a creative virtuoso, which will be visible in Friday night’s match against Hobbs.

“Selfishly, I want to wrestle Powerhouse Hobbs,” Punk says. “It just looks like fun. What he does can really fit with what I do. So to harness that potential and feel the crowd, and feel the youthful exuberance. This is my Lazarus Pit, this is my fountain of youth and I’m going to wrestle the young guys as long as I can.”

Punk and Hobbs is a clash of the past and future, meeting in the present at wrestling’s newest oasis in AEW.

“If you want to watch cool pro wrestling, that’s what this is,” Punk says. “If you like hard-hitting, a---kicking action, watch the whole show. If you love pro wrestling, then watch. We’re going to go out there and beat the s--- out of each other.”

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