CM Punk has revealed why he teased performing John Cena’s signature ‘Five Knuckle Shuffle’ during his showdown with Eddie Kingston at AEW Full Gear.
At Full Gear, CM Punk and Eddie Kingston went to war. It would do the blood-soaked chaos a disservice to simply call it a wrestling match when it was nothing but an all out brawl. While Kingston fulfilled his pre-match promise to “beat up” Punk, he was ultimately defeated via a GTS. The win moves the former WWE Champion to a record of 6-0 since joining AEW in August.
However, one of the big talking points to come out of the match wasn’t the result, but a surprising series of moves Punk adopted during it. Part way through the clash, CM Punk delivered a series of familiar looking shoulder blocks, followed by an even more familiar looking side slam. A combination of moves, of course, made famous by John Cena. Punk then teased following up with the ‘Five Knuckle Shuffle’ before moving on.
During the match, Punk also paid tribute to Eddie Guerrero on the 16 year anniversary of his death.
Speaking during the AEW Full Gear media scrum, CM Punk explained his rationale behind his Eddie Guerrero tribute and John Cena tease.
“I have one boss when I’m in the ring, and I often like to say I have no boss when I’m in the ring but the truth is it’s the people,” Punk said. “I listen to them and sometimes I go with the flow and let them take me places, and sometimes, regardless of the seven-year gap, I’ve been doing this for a minute and I know what I’m doing. To me, it’s fun just to f*** with people.
This is the whole juice for me, right? Getting reactions, getting different reactions, and getting to play with that, and 16 years ago today we lost Eddie Guerrero, and I just thought, I’m wrestling a dude tonight [with the same name]. How great is this going to be when I get them chanting for Eddie?
In my head, I’m going to be thinking about Eddie so I get to play with emotions and stuff like that because I feel it too. When they’re chanting for Eddie, I’ll go ahead and give them the three amigos, you know what I mean? This is not what you want, are you not entertained? I never really expect to get booed or cheered. I have a pretty good idea and I think what I’m really, really excellent at is reading the room.
Again, pulling back the curtain it’s one of the reasons why a Friday ago when me and Eddie did the promo in the ring, I didn’t want people to see me or him until tonight. I figured the hay was in the barn, we set the stage and I didn’t want to influence them either way anymore than we already did. Let’s just let the chips lay the way they are Saturday and we’ll go out there and see what’s what. That’s what we did, hopefully everybody enjoyed it.”
Punk then looked to the future, while also giving a quick shout-out to Jon Moxley.
“I look pretty far ahead but that’s just me being greedy,” Punk said. “Like, I want to wrestle you, you, and you. I know we’re going to get to it all eventually, but sometimes I want to step my foot on the gas and go full board, but it’s been pretty calculated. I wrestled everybody that had a different style, so yeah, I’m coming back and proving that I’m still that dude. I can do it all. Today wasn’t a wrestling match, it was a fight. But things change.
Shout out to Jon Moxley, he’s getting better right now and when we lose a big piece of the company like that, we have to course correct and do different things. I think that’s where I thrive because I’m challenged with last minute stuff and working on the fly.
Everything going forward, I think everybody’s going to be stoked that stuff is going to happen and plans change. I think we’re beyond capable of, instead of just putting a band-aid on something, make them all think this was the plan all along.”
Reflecting on Punk’s mixed crowd reaction at Full Gear, AEW President Tony Khan compared it The Rock being booed at WrestleMania X8 during his match with Hulk Hogan.
H/t to Wrestling Inc for the transcription.