Former WWE Superstar Mike Knox recently spoke to Sportskeeda Wrestling, appearing on their UnSKripted show with Dr. Chris Featherstone to talk all things WWE, including working with CM Punk.
Mike Knox signed to WWE in early 2005, mainly featuring for Deep South Wrestling before being called up to the ECW roster in the summer of the following year. Following the successful ‘One Night Stand’ pay-per-views, WWE had chosen to bring back the ECW name as a stand alone brand in May 2006. The company set about building a new roster creating exciting, edgier new content. This lead to a striptease segment featuring Kelly Kelly which was interrupted by the debuting Knox.
After numerous squash matches the California native’s first real feud was with CM Punk. An experience that Knox still looks back upon very fondly.
It was awesome working with Punk. I never really got to work with him before that,” Knox noted. “We’d both been bounced around for a long time, maybe eight-ten years before where we finally got up to finally meet each other. We never met. We never played around in the ring or nothing.”
Not that every match that the pair had was straightforward. As Knox recalls, the first time that the two worked together was anything but plain sailing.
“I remember the first time that we wrestled. I missed like two or three planes, and it was just one of those nightmare days… I thought I was never going to get there. I was changing in the car as they were driving me to the arena because the music was on and he was already out in the ring, and I had to jump out of the car and run. Yeah, we ran to the ring and did everything out there. You know what I mean? The lost art (calling it in the ring). Everything single thing, including the finish.”
Knox also admitted that before that first match, he didn’t really see what all of the fuss was about where his new adversary was concerned. It was only after that first match that he became a fan of the future WWE Champion.
“Before, when I was in Deep South, I was kind of like, I saw him on tape, and I was just like, I don’t get it. What’s the big deal, man. I don’t think he’s that good. I don’t understand why everybody’s talking about him. Then I went out there, and we did our first match, and I was a fan of his ever since. Ah, Oh, that’s what it is! Okay, duh, alright!”
Punk would go on to enjoy a glittering career in WWE, winning all of the company’s major championships before departing in acrimonious circumstances in 2014. During his 434-day WWE Championship reign Punk famously joined forces with Paul Heyman, a partnership Heyman would exclusively tell Inside The Ropes was “the time of my life.”