wrestling / Columns

CM Punk Discusses His Recovery & Jade Cargill on Her Undefeated Streak

July 31, 2022 | Posted by Jeffrey Harris
CM Punk AEW Image Credit: AEW

Author’s Note: The following CM Punk and Jade Cargill interview clips were taken from a roundtable interview session with other reporters. This transcript has been edited for clarity and to include only 411’s questions and answers.

During the 2022 San Diego Comic-Con, 411mania was on hand for a series of roundtable interviews with the AEW stars in attendance for last Saturday’s AEW: Heroes & Villains panel during Comic-Con International. During the roundtables, we were able to talk to reigning AEW World Champion, CM Punk, and undefeated TBS Champion Jade Cargill.

CM Punk is a wrestling legend and returned to the ring less than a year ago after signing with AEW at The First Dance event in Chicago. Currently, Punk is dealing with a foot injury, which he spoke to us about during our chat.

Since her AEW in-ring debut in May 2021 in a huge matchup teaming with NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal, Jade Cargill has remained undefeated at 33-0. She captured the AEW TBS Championship earlier this year after beating Ruby Soho in the tournament finals to crown the inaugural champion. She has kept the title since that time. Here’s a transcript and a full video of our chat with these two top AEW champions and stars:

Jeffrey Harris: Punk, this is not your first Comic-Con.

CM Punk: No.

Jeffrey Harris: Jade, is this your first Comic-Con?

Jade Cargill: This is my first Comic-Con.

Jeffrey Harris: Congrats.

Jade Cargill: Thank you.

Jeffrey Harris: Punk do you have an update on how the progress with the injury, and do you have a time frame yet? What do you think?

CM Punk: No, I’m not gonna talk time frames. I feel like everybody tells me something different. Surgeon says one thing. PT says another thing. I’m just kind of basing it on how I feel. Some days are better than others you know my foot feels like garbage, but I know I think it’s the type of injury where I know there’s one week it’s gonna just progress to a point where you know I can start pushing. I’m in a hurry to get better, I’m not in a hurry to come back because if I feel it if I put that pressure on me to hurry to come back, I’m not going to come back 100 percent, and the last thing I want to do is come back too soon, re-injure it, have a setback, and then I’m going to start drinking if I, you know, get another setback. So, it’s day to day, better than I was yesterday, you know.

Jeffrey Harris: Jade, when is Tony [Schiavone] going to stop cutting the you-know-what, and are you going to have to take some drastic measures because he won’t he won’t stop cutting it? So, I don’t think you should let him interview you anymore because he’s always causing trouble.

Jade Cargill: Yeah, I think we’re a dynamic. We’re a duo. I love Tony Schiavone. He’s a thrill to work with. Yeah, he needs to cut the s***.

Jeffrey Harris: Punk, you’re the AEW World Champion. You’re still the world champion. Do you consider Jon Moxley and his interim title a legitimate title, or as Tyson Woodley would say, is it a boo-boo title?

CM Punk: Great Tyron reference. I don’t know. It’s interesting, right? Like I think it carries some weight you know. I think it’s an interesting place where, you know, the champ breaks his foot, and he can’t perform. AEW is a place where there’s a couple different people floating around that could you know be an interim champ. Is it the real world’s championship? No. That’s why they call it the interim championship, and you know that’ll be my second order of business I suppose. First one is getting the foot healthy, and second one is you know coming in and essentially what Jon is the number one contender.

Jeffrey Harris: Does a potential title matchup with Jon Moxley get you excited?

CM Punk: Yeah, for sure it can. You know, I think we’re two really strong personalities. I think it’s a match that fans would want to see, and him filling the void or trying to when I’m gone, being an interim champion. I think it’s an interesting dynamic you know. We see it all the time in UFC. Fighters have long layoffs, or you know, they break a hand, they’re talking about doing one with Alexander Volkanovski out, a featherweight interim championship. It’s really just a way to kind of juice up the number one contender, and you can have a big match you know off of that. And I think it’s just, business-wise, I think it’s smart.

Jeffrey Harris: Jade, you’re already racking up records. You’re undefeated for over 500 days. You’re an undefeated champion. When you got into this business did you ever imagine you’d be racking up uh records like this and in a short time be a great champion and representative of the company?

Jade Cargill: Thank you. No, never. I knew about the match I had with Shaquille O’Neal. That was about it. I know that I made the best decision as far as wrestling companies were to go. Clearly, I mean *motions to her title belt*, it speaks for herself, but I would have never ever — if you told me this five years [ago], well last year, I’d been like, “Yeah right! There’s no way!” So again, I’m just thankful for our owner Tony Khan for just trusting and believing that I can be put in these difficult positions and come out on top of it.

Jeffrey Harris: Punk, does it ever dawn on you that you returned to wrestling after a 16-year hiatus less than a year for The First Dance? You came back to wrestling for the first time in 16 years. That wasn’t even a year ago. Is that crazy or what?

CM Punk: Yeah it’s pretty wild. Yeah, it’s wild. It’s cool though. AEW didn’t exist until two-and-a-half-three years ago, so there wasn’t another avenue for me to do what I do best so I had to kind of find other stuff to do. I’m just thankful and grateful that it’s
Here, but yeah, it’s crazy. It’s not lost on me how wild it is.

Jeffrey Harris: Did you pick Darby [Allin] to be your first opponent, or did you have discussions with Tony [Khan] about who it was going to be?

CM Punk: I had discussions with Tony about who I wanted it to be, and then he threw out the name Darby, and I was like, “Oh. Interesting.” And to me coming back I didn’t necessarily want to wrestle the good guy, right? But everything just kind of made sense. You know, Tony said, “Trust me. Darby’s the guy.” And I was like, “Ah, interesting.” You know and him being with Sting was kind of a strange dynamic, but it was one of those things that was just wild enough and crazy enough and it was something that I didn’t initially think of. So, I was like, “Oh cool.” I think it’s important to be receptive, right? Like I had this idea of what I wanted to do and having a boss in a company in a situation where you can have discussions, it’s not just like, “Oh, you’re doing this. This is your name, and this is your entrance music. Go out there and do this.” We came up with, to me, what wound up being perfect. You can watch that back, and you can’t tell me that there was anybody else better for CM Punk to come back and start the renaissance of his career with.

Jeffrey Harris: Jade, did you fire Mark Sterling, or is just Stokely Hathaway right now? Does Mark still work for you? What’s the dynamic there?

Jade Cargill: Mark Still works for me. He’s still my lawyer. Stokely is my PR.

Jeffrey Harris: Can you trust Stokely? It looks like there’s some tension there with what’s happening with The Baddies.

Jade Cargill: He invited some random girl off the street that we can’t trust. We don’t know who she is. She probably just wants to be around to get the star rub, but I mean we’re gonna have to see what’s about to happen. I mean, Stokely just came here so I’m like, “Who are you to tell me what I can do, and this is my show.” So, I guess we’re going to sit back and see how this all plays out.

Jeffrey Harris: Punk, talking about great moments when you got to headline the Greensboro Coliseum teaming with Sting and Darby, you were wearing face paint. That’s just iconic stuff. How does it feel that you can still get to do matches like that and you can get in the ring with icons like Sting and you’re an icon too, but that’s just amazing stuff man.

CM Punk: I’m not an icon when I get in the ring with Sting, you know, in the Greensboro Coliseum? Like, that s***’s wild. That’s history, you know. You watch this when you’re a kid and you grow up and you get into the business, you know, you do it because you love it. You do it because your heart’s in it. You certainly don’t do it for f***ing money. You know, I’ve been broke longer on this earth than I’ve had money in my pocket and you know you do it to chase those moments that you watch on television, and watching Sting on television for so long. Next thing you know, you go, “Oh s***. I get to tag with Sting in the Greensboro Coliseum.” We both came to each other, and I told him I was like, “I want to make gear that you wore when you wrestled [Ric] Flair.” You know, the black long boys with the gold scorpion, and he said to me, “Well, I want to wear your shirt. You know, maybe come up with a way to put your design on my face paint.” I was just like, “Holy s***.” It’s wild to be in those positions, in those moments, and I cherish them very much. And I want to go do some physical therapy on my foot right now, so I can hurry back and get back to doing exactly those things.

Jeffrey Harris: Since we’re at Comic-Con, does it dawn on you that 11 years ago you crashed another panel for a different organization with a title and it’s been 11 years since that time. Now you’re here, and now you’re here with AEW for the Heroes and Villains panel. Is that special at all to you, thinking of your history at this convention?

CM Punk: I think it’s cool and it’s special because you know 11 years ago, a lot of people were like, “Oh, why do we want to do Comic-Con? It’s just a bunch of nerd s***,” and it’s just like, “No. This is pop culture. This is where we need to be. We need to have a presence here.” You know, it’s fun to me to see how much they’re involved now when they wouldn’t listen to reason back then. It’s almost like their hand was forced. So, it’s cool to know that I was a part of changing that for them.

Jeffrey Harris: Are you finally going to pick up that copy of Action Comics No. 1?

CM Punk: No, I’d be more versed to try to get like an Amazing Fantasy #15 or something like that. You know, it’s a little cheaper too.

Jeffrey Harris: Jade, is there an opponent or person you think has really pushed you forward in the ring, or do people get in the ring with you and that’s the biggest thing that’s ever happened to them?

Jade Cargill: Well, one of the people that I work with is Red Velvet. And she’s really pushed me in the ring and she’s like literally helped groom me and like calm me down when I think I’ve done anything brutal. And working with Athena right now has really pushed me to new heights. She came in like guns a-blazing. So, you know, I’m just thankful to be in the ring with her and just getting knowledge from her to continue to get better.

Jade Cargill AEW

Image Credit: AEW

Jeffrey Harris: I’m sorry I’m going to say this Punk, but what you did with MJF was like magic. You guys did some really deep cuts in that whole thing. Did you like that you got to do some of those deep cuts and callbacks? Some of the work you got to do in terms of character and storyline game chills. I thought It was really special.

CM Punk: Yeah, listen. I think there’s an art to making things personal, and I think I think that’s to me what draws interest and draws money, right? Have either of you guys ever been in a wrestling match, or have you ever been suplexed off the top rope? [No] So, if you’re watching the show, and you see somebody get suplexed off the top rope you can assume okay that’s not enjoyable that’s not something I want to do. That sucks, right, but you don’t know because it’s never happened to you. But if you see two people on television, and they’re having a conversation and they have a disagreement and one stabs the other one in the back, chances are you’ve had a family member or a friend hurt you in that way and you can relate to that.

And that’s what pro wrestling is to me. That’s what draws you in and that’s what makes it interesting. We have a lot of impressive athletes in AEW. They can do all the moves that I never could do, but the thing is, I don’t want to do them either. What I want to do is make you feel a certain way, whether that’s hatred, joy, I came back to pro wrestling and I had grown men in the audience crying, bawling, right? “I was bawling” because there was raw emotion in that building, and I will chase that until I can no longer wrestle to me that’s what it is about.

Those moments are special. It’s not easy to do. Sometimes it can be very, very difficult to do, but holy s***, when you got them, when I got you guys, there’s nothing like it. You know, that’s why it’s enjoyable to me that we have these characters, and as you know s***ty of a human being as he is, you know, a guy like MJF or Eddie Kingston, I think it’s great that the fans can cheer or boo who they want. Oh, they think Eddie’s a hero. Come on, man. I’ll let you do it, but like he ain’t winning s***. You know what I mean?

When I come back, there’s gonna be a reckoning. There’s gonna be me and Jon Moxley. Look, I know some people like him more than they like me. I know that there’s going to be a divide and a line, and I know that some people are going to fall to one side or another. I’m the guy that gets booed. I’m the guy that gets criticized. I’m the guy that gets s*** on because I can f***ing take it. Other people can’t. Some people are too sensitive. They need those people to love them. I want them to be them, and I will be me. And at the end of the day, that is what all this is about.

CM Punk AEW

Image Credit: AEW

Thank you to CM Punk and Jade Cargill for taking the time to speak with us. You can also check out our SDCC roundtable interview with AEW star and former World Champion Chris Jericho RIGHT HERE.

If you want to check out more of our exclusive interview videos and content, you can subscribe to the 411 Wrestling & Entertainment YouTube Channel via the above player. You can also check out more of our exclusive interviews on the 411 Wrestling Interviews Podcast, which is available on the following platforms:
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article topics :

AEW, CM Punk, Jade Cargill, MJF, SDCC, Jeffrey Harris