Former WWE Champion Bobby Lashley hopes that CM Punk’s return to the company will be a positive one.
Speaking with Steve Fall of WrestlingNews.co, Lashley briefly shared his thoughts on Punk’s return.
“I really don’t know, to be honest with you. I was actually leaving [WWE] in 2008, around the time when Punk was really starting to pick up a little steam. I mean, he was there, but he really didn’t do anything at that time. And I know he had a big impact in WWE in his time there. I spoke with some of the guys that know him. I got mixed feelings. Some people were very against it, some people were, you know, whatever. But you know, it’s a land of opportunity. So, if he comes back and he helps out the show, and that’s the business side of it. I don’t really know Punk too personally. When I was fighting, he went to UFC. I put my money on him. So he does owe me a little bit of money (Laughs). Twice. I was like, Oh, you could do it. Come on.”– Bobby Lashley
He also spoke about the positive impact Punk’s return will have on WWE’s numbers, though he hopes that Punk’s contract and name value don’t lead to complacency from him and the company.
“For integrity purposes, I understand he has a big name, he’s coming back. And he’s gonna do some big numbers, but I hope they make him kind of work for some of the stuff. I hope he’s not one of the people that ‘oh okay, he comes back, gonna win the Rumble, we’re gonna do this, we’re gonna do that.’ I hope they give him an opportunity to kind of prove his loyalty to the business and some of the people in there just to let everybody know, some of the naysayers, some of the people that aren’t too happy about him being there. I hope he has his opportunity to work his way back up to the top and not just [be] given everything, because maybe he negotiated a good contract that allowed him to do that.”– Bobby Lashley
Lashley and Punk never crossed paths in WWE, as Lashley left in 2008 while Punk won his first World Heavyweight Championship that year.
CM Punk’s return to WWE after nearly ten years and several legal battles between the parties has been one of the most-discussed stories in wrestling this year. He returned to Raw on the November 27 edition and is scheduled to appear on this Friday’s (December 8) Tribute To The Troops edition of Smackdown. His return has seemingly divided parts of the locker room, though it appears that Lashley does not have any ill will towards him.
It remains to be seen how Punk will be integrated into WWE programming, but fans and wrestlers alike have been angling for several potential dream matches for years. There will likely be clear answers soon, potentially as early as this week. As always, we will keep you updated as more news about CM Punk and his WWE return comes out.