CM Punk has only made one cameo appearance on WWE programming this year and he’s already found himself in the center of a controversy.
Punk, who dramatically quit WWE in 2014, playfully tweeted about catching up on pro wrestling over the past five years. Always the no-hold’s-barred provocateur, Punk curiously tagged AEW President Tony Khan in the tweet. Khan responded in kind, taking the opportunity to go all Chris Jericho and mock WWE, particularly its recent Saudi Arabia snafu.
Never one to back down, the DGAF Viper tweeted out an article from Sportsnaut.com, referencing allegations of corruption from billionaire Jacksonville Jaguars owner—and, more importantly, Tony Khan’s father—Shahid Khan.
What resulted was a nuclear tweet from Khan, who not only discredited the article, but mocked Orton’s colorful language on Twitch.
Who knew it would take the fragile ego of a billionaire’s son and the unlikely return of CM Punk to get people to care that Randy Orton recently used the N-word during a live stream?
With fans thirsty for direct conflict between WWE and AEW, the mildly entertaining exchange has been treated as if it were Ali-Frazier. The Twitter spat quickly went viral, with the relatively covert Khan even trending on Twitter.
Randy Orton recently re-signed a long-term deal with WWE. With his contract coming due, Orton had previously made a series of posts suggesting he might leave WWE for AEW, tagging several undercard wrestlers in the process. In the end, what could have been a golden opportunity to launch a makeshift wrestler’s union—or, at the very least, raise WWE’s minimum salary—turned out to be yet another carny wrestler playing games with the internet for his own personal entertainment/gain. Orton seems to have met his match after provoking fellow carny Tony Khan, who was sure to call Orton out for his leverage-baiting tactics.
This is easily one of the bigger stories headed into Tuesday’s heavily anticipated edition of WWE Backstage. And with CM Punk bringing the promise—both implied and on Twitter—of not holding back, the likelihood of Punk and the “Backstage” crew doing everything it can to avoid making mention of this Twitter beef will further justify the fake and propagated nature of WWE Backstage on the first day of Phil’s tenure.
No one is safe? Sounds like a plane full of wrestlers in Saudi Arabia!
— Tony Khan (@TonyKhan) November 18, 2019
What’s that whole thing about glass houses and stones?https://t.co/z99BVuCMfP
— Randy Orton (@RandyOrton) November 19, 2019