CM Punk hates Ryback because he injured him twice, and refused to apologise for his actions after the fact.
If you believe Punk, he even told CM Punk that he was not malicious, but “dumb as ****” following the injury, which exacerbated Punk to the point of walking away from wrestling for seven years.
Ryback has also shown that he hates CM Punk over the years, claiming that Punk was jealous of his success at the time.
In this article, we’ll explain why CM Punk hates Ryback and vice versa.
Ryback Injured CM Punk In 2012
Prior to TLC 2012, CM Punk was booked to wrestle Ryback in a one-on-one match for the WWE Championship.
The pair had previously wrestled at Hell in a Cell 2012, which saw Brad Maddox interference costing Ryback the match. At Survivor Series, The Shield interfered to keep Punk as champion, screwing Ryback at every opportunity.
However, before they were booked to wrestle at TLC 2012, CM Punk suffered a torn meniscus, keeping him out of the ring for some weeks.
The WWE Champion blamed Ryback for the injury, dubbing him “unsafe”, and he refused to work with him in the future.
This is likely why their title match was cancelled, and replaced by Ryback and Team Hell No vs The Shield.
Ryback also injured John Cena the following year during the European Tour, leading to calls of him being unsafe in the ring from both Punk and Cena.
They were both two top stars, which did not bode well for Ryback’s career going forward.
CM Punk Was Thrown Onto Concrete By Ryback
After his feud with Brock at Summerslam 2013, CM Punk continued his war with Paul Heyman.
This involved Heyman’s new protegee, the Goldberg-light superstar named Ryback.
While it was clear he was a downgrade from Brock, CM Punk tried to make the best of it.
He put the past behind he and Ryback, offering him a clean slate and a promise to do his best to elevate their work to the main event.
However, on the first night they worked together, Ryback attempted to Gorilla Press CM Punk through a table, but instead missed and sent him crashing to the ground onto the solid concrete.
In doing this, Ryback injured CM Punk’s hips and caused him untold pain for weeks. The pair would work together again at Hell in a Cell, but that would be the last time CM Punk wrestled Ryback.
CM Punk revealed all this about his work with Ryback during his podcast interview on Colt Cabana’s Art of Wrestling podcast.
You can see the transcription below:
“I don’t even know if I want to cover the Ryback stuff that took 20 years off my life. We’re not here to knock anyone, but I was beat up and torn up. Then John Cena got hurt, and they’re like, ‘Oh well, how do you feel about this guy?’ You know, I mean, he’s definitely not ready, but you can carry him if you want.’ And I was like, ‘Yeah, okay, great.’ So that took 20 years off my life because, and then I have to wrestle steroid guy, and he’s very callous. I call it like I see it, so he’s very hurtful.”
“Sometimes they bring color, sometimes deliberately dirty. You know, I mean, there was one time he kicked me in the stomach as hard as he could and he broke my ribs right at the tail end. And yeah, I never got an apology for that. He was something else, real system. Can you work Ryback? I said no. And once again, Vince goes, ‘Oh, you won.’ And then I said, ‘That’s three. You’re gonna owe me.’ “
“I said, ‘You know this guy hurt me last time. No, it’s gonna be different.’ Like, you know, he went away for whatever reason. He turned heel. He’s gonna be a Paul Heyman guy. It’s gonna continue the feud with Paul. I was like, ‘Do you not see a problem with going from Brock to Ryback?’ It’s just whatever. But alright, I’ll try to make it work.”
“I was more interested in working with Curtis Axel to try to elevate him because Triple H did such an awesome job at doing it, even though he promised him he was going to. That’s the bitter part of me creeping out, ladies and gentlemen. So, but it’s better than instead of wanting to see young guys who deserved it.”
“I say, ‘Alright, I’ll work Ryback.’ And I go to Ryan and I go, ‘Hey, man, clean slate. Let’s kill this. Let’s show them that you’re better than they think you are. Let’s show them that I’m better than they think I am. And let’s turn this midcard into a main event.’ Yeah, I’m really excited. Great, blah blah blah.”I was more interested in working with Curtis Axel to try to elevate him because Triple H did such an awesome job at doing it, even though he promised him he was going to. “
“First night out, gorilla press through a table. Misses the table, dumps me on the concrete ground, tilts my pelvis, messed me up for weeks. I’m compensating because my knee is still messed up. Both my knees, you know what I mean? The one that had just had surgery six months ago and the one that was torn up. “
” And I refused to have surgery on. I just wanted to rehab it, which I did. And then he’d and like now it’s at the point where I walk up to him and I go, ‘You can’t tell me you didn’t do that on purpose because you’ve done it so many times now. You either tell me right now you’re dumb as **** and you suck, or you did it on purpose.’ And he was like, ‘I’m dumb as ****. I’m sorry.’ And like, at that point, there was nothing I could do in my mind. There’s like, well, great, I’m…”
Ryback Claims CM Punk Was Jealous Of His Success
Ryback has claimed that CM Punk’s only issue was that he was jealous of how popular Ryback was getting, compared to Punk and John Cena.
In an interview on Disco Inferno and Konnan’s K100 show, Ryback said Punk’s initial problem with him revolved around merchandise numbers:
“We got along great, I thought, prior to that. I can tell you, him and [John] Cena were the two [highest] merch sellers when I came up and I got hot, and I’ll never forget he came over to me when the merch guys were showing me the numbers, and Punk became aware of it and he goes, ‘Holy s**t.’ From that point forward, I felt like everything kinda changed with everything.”
“When you’re in that environment, it brings out the worst in everybody. You know how money is with everything. I understand it. You’re in the top positions, you wanna protect your money. Nobody is gonna go out of their way to make it easier for me, right? So, it’s just the way that it is in that environment.”
Ryback also revealed that Colt Cabana apologised to him for his remarks years later, showing that maybe CM Punk may have gone slightly too far with his criticism on the podcast.
“It’s unfortunate. Colt Cabana actually apologized to me for all of that (…) I worked with top guys my whole time. Even no matter where I was at on the card, live events, I was with top guys from the beginning to end.”
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.