Former multi-time WWE world champion CM Punk is set to appear during Starrcast III, a fan convention during AEW All Out weekend in Chicago. It feels like forever since CM Punk has participated in a professional wrestling event, and in truth, it has been quite a long time. Punk infamously and abruptly walked out of WWE the night after the 2014 Royal Rumble event, and would later clarify his many reasons for doing so in a podcast interview. Basically, Punk had come to hate working for WWE, and also accused the company of inadequate medical care.
Since his WWE exit, Punk hasn't officially spent any time in a wrestling ring, outside of some rumored but unconfirmed instances of him showing up at independent shows wearing a mask. Punk of course made an unsuccessful attempt to begin a career as a UFC fighter, losing both fights handily. Still, he's not at a loss for work, booking multiple TV gigs, film appearances, and autograph signings for his still loyal fanbase.
Now, CM Punk has signed on to make his most overtly wrestling-related appearance since leaving WWE, as he'll take part in a one-on-one interview as well as meet and greets with fans during Starrcast III. Promoted by Conrad Thompson, Starrcast is a series of fan conventions featuring big names from the world of wrestling, and isn't technically tied to AEW. That doesn't change the fact that all three Starrcast events have been alongside big AEW pay-per-view events, creating an association between the two in the minds of fans. Check out the promo for Punk's Starrcast appearance below, complete with his old "Cult of Personality" theme song.
While Punk isn't scheduled to be a part of AEW's All Out event on the evening of August 31, this Starrcast appearance will only add fuel to the fire of hopeful Punk fans that would love nothing more than to see him wrestle under the AEW banner. Punk has said that he doesn't plan to step back into the ring for another match many times, but despite that, his fans still continue to hope he'll do so. Will they get their wish? Maybe one day, but they're advised not to get too invested in the idea of Punk making a surprise debut at All Out.
With Punk turning 41 in a few months, if he's going to ever pull the trigger on a final in-ring stint, the time to do so would certainly be soon. That said, there's much evidence to suggest that Punk is happy with his life as an actor, TV personality, and retired wrestling icon, as well as husband of fellow retired wrestler AJ Lee. Even if Punk never wrestles again, for AEW or otherwise, his legacy is secure. For now, fans can at least hope to see a little of the old pipe-bombing CM Punk when he has a live mic at Starrcast III.
Source: Starrcast III/Twitter