Current AEW star CM Punk has fuelled the ongoing rumours that Conor McGregor, formerly a UFC star, will one day make the switch to step inside the squared circle as a professional wrestler.
Speaking with ESPN Sportsnation, CM Punk commented on the success that other stars from MMA and beyond have had when they’ve become wrestlers, and how he’s sure McGregor will do the same to make big business.
[Floyd] Mayweather crossed over and did a match at WrestleMania, I’m sure we’re eventually going to see [Conor] McGregor come over. [Ronda] Rousey was excellent when she came over. The bottom line is making money. If you’re making money, you’re technically not doing anything wrong.
There have been plenty of rumblings about Conor McGregor making the move, with plenty of cross-sections of the wrestling industry getting involved including Sheamus echoing what CM Punk has said, as well as Becky Lynch voicing a BT Sport video package hyping Conor McGregor earlier this year.
CM Punk confirmed the similarities between MMA and wrestling, stating that both boil back to entertainment.
Everything is entertainment. I think some people conflate being a fighter with being an entertainer.
One of the most recent sporting crossovers with wrestling was when Logan Paul was involved in the heated rivalry between Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn, at the same time as his brother Jake was rising to fame inside the boxing ring. Punk has likened what the Paul brothers have been doing to old-school professional wrestling.
When it makes dollars, it makes sense. What the Paul brothers are doing, for the lack of a better term, it’s old school pro wrestling. You can say they are crossing over, but there are so many similarities between the two businesses. They command attention. People want to see them get knocked out and they know this, but they are putting themselves out there and putting themselves on the line.
CM Punk also said he will never criticise someone who puts the effort in for the sport.
I’ll never criticize in a negative way anybody who makes the walk, anybody who trains their ass off because I did it and I know what it takes. You put yourself out there and on the line. A lot of the times, a lot of the sacrifice goes unnoticed, but it’s what it is.
With thanks to Fightful for the transcription.