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What was CM Punk’s first WWE match?

cm punk wwe debut

CM Punk grew to be one of the biggest stars on the independent scene before he made his WWE debut. He was a Ring of Honor Champion in the promotion’s fledgling years and made his name as one of the best in-ring storytellers in the world.

CM Punk would eventually be signed to WWE and sent to OVW to train with none other than ECW legend Paul Heyman. The pair struck up a friendship, and Heyman resisted calls to fire Punk as he helped the Straight-Edge Saviour to hone his skills and become one of the best wrestlers in the world.

Eventually, WWE would see the talent in the Chicago native, and would move him to the ECW brand for CM Punk’s WWE debut. He became a star in ECW, even becoming the ECW Champion in a match against John Morrison after Chris Benoit‘s untimely death.

CM Punk ECW Debut

CM Punk made his ECW debut at a house show in the ECW Arena, taking on ECW original Stevie Richards in a singles match on June 24 2006. CM Punk came out to his Ring of Honor theme “Miseria Cantare” (which he also used in AEW against MJF at Revolution 2022), although this would later be changed for his TV debut due to copyright.

CM Punk’s WWE debut ended in victory as he defeated Stevie Richards to a “great pop” from the fierce ECW crowd. Punk had made his name on the independent scene and was a favourite to the hardcore fans who turned out for ECW’s revival show.

CM Punk’s WWE debut on TV would come in the next month, on the first episode of the newly revived “ECW”. On July 4 2006, he debuted in a backstage promo, informing the crowd of his Straight-Edge lifestyle, emphasising his discipline and love for wrestling. He became an instant fan-favourite, as the casual fan joined the hardcore ROH fans in being behind the Second-City Saint in WWE.

CM Punk’s debut match on WWE television was on August 1 2006, facing Justin Credible in the legendary Hammerstein Ballroom arena. He emphasised not just his straight-edge lifestyle, but also his Muay Thai background that helped him get the win over the former ECW Champion.

Utilising the Go To Sleep (GTS) and the Anaconda Vince, he established himself as the undefeated top star in ECW. He would earn himself a shot at the ECW Championship multiple times, most notably inside an Elimination Chamber and against Chris Benoit at Vengeance. However, Benoit killed himself and his family, so the match never took place and Punk instead lost to John Morrison in the ECW Championship match.

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