UPDATE x 7: Despite the fact that CM Punk is still included in the advertisements for WWE's "Elimination Chamber" pay-per-view, and may continue to appear on some official WWE advertisements for upcoming live events in the future, the word within the company is that those will eventually be pulled. The advertisements are made well in advance and they take some time to change from market to market.
In the past week, two different key people within WWE with knowledge of Punk's situation, have noted that he was "as good as gone" from the company once his WWE deal expired in July. He had been very vocal about it and flat out told people he was leaving. Many people shrugged it off as they hear it time and time again from talents and they always wind up coming back. One person even claimed that Punk wouldn't even last until the duration of his contract.
As far as the meeting between Punk and Vince McMahon backstage at RAW on Monday before he ultimately left and went home, one source noted that the meeting didn't even take place until approximately 7:30pm. Following the "heated exchange" between the two, Punk walked out of the building.
The reason the Kofi Kingston vs. Alberto Del Rio match went so long this past Monday night on RAW was because it took place during the period that Punk was originally scheduled to have a segment, and because he left, the two had to have their match go a second segment to cover the time.
Apparently there has been a working assumption within WWE creative for multiple weeks now that Punk was going to be leaving when his contract expired in July, and that he would not be signing a new deal at that time.
As things stand right now, Sheamus is scheduled to replace Punk on the bookings he had advertised for the SmackDown television tapings. Daniel Bryan is also expected to replace CM Punk against Triple H at WrestleMania 30 as reported earlier here on the website.
UPDATE x 6: Here is a video of CM Punk's Q&A session at the Wizard World Comic Con in Portland, OR this past weekend. This is the Q&A session that we've been posting about where he appears frustrated with WWE:
UPDATE x 5: As previously reported, CM Punk held a Q&A session at the Wizard World "Portland Comic Con" event on Friday. Since the news broke that CM Punk has quit WWE, several fans who were in attendance sent in their recaps of Punk's Q&A. Here are the highlights:
- Punk said he doesn't think Sting should come to WWE because he doesn't have "anything left in the tank." He thinks Sting would take another spot away from WWE's younger superstars who are trying to make it to the main event level.
- Punk said Batista is his friend, but he doesn't feel the time is right for him to return, for the same reason Sting shouldn't be brought in. Punk said it's Daniel Bryan's time and Bryan should be in the main event of WrestleMania.
- He has been frustrated with WWE’s direction for a while and feels that the writers aren’t in touch with what fans want.
- He has been saving a lot of money and he would be fine if he wasn't receiving a paycheck from WWE anymore.
- He's entertained the idea of fighting for UFC, but he doesn't know if his body could handle it at this time.
- Punk said his health has been bad for months, especially September through November of last year. He’s had weekly MRI’s and blood work done, but doctors can’t figure out what’s wrong. He started eating meat again and is starting to feel better, but isn’t close to 100%.
UPDATE x 4: ESPN Cleveland reporter Casy Kulas reports that there may be some concussion issues that came into play during CM Punk's argument with WWE officials on Monday. Kulas posted to Twitter:
My info on CM Punk: I do know from sources that at #Raw in CLE there was heated exchange backstage between Punk & staff. Topic - concussion.— Casey Kulas (@CaseyKulas) January 29, 2014
Punk was heard arguing with staff saying "I passed all your damn concussion test" and "I'm not going out and telling fans that BS"— Casey Kulas (@CaseyKulas) January 29, 2014
UPDATE x 3: As previously reported, WWE RAW was re-written a number of times this past Monday night. According to sources, the RAW script for Monday...