CM Punk’s comeback at the Survivor Series Premium Live Event became a significant event in pro wrestling history for many reasons. After all, no one expected Punk to return to WWE considering how he left the company in 2014. Interestingly enough, his WWE debut match allegedly went off script as well.

CM Punk joined WWE developmental territory in September 2005, but he made his WWE television debut a few months prior – on an April 2005 edition of Sunday Night Heat.

During that episode, he teamed with Russell Simpson in his tryout match against Simon Dean and Maven. While speaking on his new YouTube video ‘I Was CM Punk’s First WWE Opponent‘, Maven recalled backstage details regarding the match. He revealed that both he and Dean went off script on the match in order to protect Punk.

Maven revealed that WWE management wanted CM Punk to take the pin in this match, but Dean, the veteran wrestler in the match, opted for them to pin Simpson instead.


“The one thing management wanted, they wanted us to get the pinfall victory, the one two three, on CM Punk. And for whatever reason, I have no clue, I mean he wasn’t a signed talent at the time, but he already had heat in the company. There were already feathers he had ruffled. I don’t know how and I don’t know who’s.

Nova (Simon Dean) saw it different. Nova wanted to give the guy a chance and Nova made the decision. Earlier on, when we were going over the match backstage he said ‘Once we come in, I’m going to knock you out, Punk. You roll to the floor.’ That way we can get the slam, one two three, on Simpson.

I don’t know why Simon wanted to protect Punk. It could’ve been a favour to Stevie, like Stevie asked us earlier in the day, or he might have seen in Punk what the entire world would come to see years later.

Simon was always a good gauge of talent. He might have known that Punk, for whatever reason, had heat backstage and he was doing everything in his power to protect him, knowing that if there was any trouble to be had it was going to fall on us, and by us I mean Simon.”

Maven added that Dean made CM Punk roll to the floor so that he couldn’t tag in for the finish, so their decision to pin Simpson would appear like they were improvising. Regardless, CM Punk will always be grateful for what Maven and Dean did, as he is now back as one of the biggest Superstars in WWE.

What are your thoughts on the behind-the-scenes details of CM Punk’s WWE debut match? Leave us a comment.

Tags: CM Punk
Subhojeet Mukherjee

Subhojeet is a professional wrestling fan for over 22 years. He got captivated by the sport during the Monday Night Wars and has a passion for it ever since. He also enjoys TV shows, movies, anime, novels and music, which broadens his perspective and appreciation for wrestling. He is a knowledgeable and respected voice in the industry.

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