He hit the leg drop (brother) and cupped his ear en route to his victory over Samoa Joe at Wembley Stadium, winning in front of the biggest crowd in wrestling history (discounting the North Korean show in the 1990s).
However, that wasn’t the only time CM Punk has drawn comparisons to The Immortal One.
In fact, his recent run and eventually firing from All Elite Wrestling has seen fans comparing CM Punk to Hulk Hogan, with their demise and backstage attitude both shockingly similar (despite CM Punk hating Hulk Hogan).
CM Punk Has Become Hulk Hogan
Backstage in AEW, it seemed like CM Punk was becoming Hulk Hogan.
It was just like Hogan’s peak in WCW. Punk had his own crew of friends that he stuck close with. The likes of FTR, Ricky Starks and Powerhouse Hobbs were all kept sweet with the top star, being pushed by association (although they deserved it due to their immense talent).
He had his own locker room, his own creative control and even his own show. Collision was created to separate CM Punk from the Elite, following on from their fight backstage at AEW All Out 2022.
Politics were also the name of the game. CM Punk could do what he wanted, and work with whoever he wanted. He used his influence to ban wrestlers from Collision, including Ryan Nemeth and Christopher Daniels (despite the latter being Head of Talent Relations in AEW).
Just like Hogan, Punk was paranoid and let his ego run wild. He seemed afraid that somebody would come and take his spot, scared about rumors in “the rag sheets, brother” being leaked about him to turn the fans against him.
Punk acted like he was above all the drama, despite being in the center of it. Having issues with Adam Page, Kenny Omega, Young Bucks, Jack Perry, William Regal (he thought he was a WWE spy) and Tony Khan doesn’t mean the world is against you – CM Punk was the problem.
He was the most popular man on the roster. CM Punk drew the most money and sold the most T-shirts. However, he held the show hostage, building Collision around him as a top star with a fake belt that he had to give up due to injury.
Eventually, CM Punk’s ego ran away with him. He worked himself into a shoot, and thought the on-screen spats were real – mirroring Hul Hogan’s last WCW match at Bash at the Beach 2000.
Just as Hulk Hogan is remembered equally for his backstage reputation for his on-screen heroics, so will CM Punk.
Nobody will forget “The First Dance”, his matches with Darby Allin and Eddie Kingston, his incredible promos with MJF or his title wins against Page and Moxley.
However, his constant fights and bickering soured the fans on the once Best in the World. His behavior even called into question his WWE run, with fans questioning the truths he revealed in his podcast interview with Colt Cabana a decade ago.
CM Punk’s run came to end in disgrace, just as Hulk Hogan did. For two men that don’t see eye to eye, there were some remarkable similarities between how their career faded out and died.
Hamish is a writer and podcaster and wrestling fan who is a key part of the Atletifo team.
After playing countless hours of WrestleMania X8 on the Gamecube, he discovered Rey Mysterio getting his head crushed by The Great Khali, and thus a love for professional wrestling was born.
He is also a Media Graduate, as well as writing for multiple sites about Premier League football and the culture of Wales – his home country.