On RAW Monday night CM Punk buried former WWWF World Champion Bruno Sammartino, who held the title for a total of 11 years over two reigns, by saying Sammartino only wrestled once a month in Madison Square Garden.
The WWE has long coveted Sammartino for their Hall of Fame and were hopeful that ongoing negotiations this year with WWE COO Triple H would convince Bruno to take part in the Hall of Fame ceremonies this year since WrestleMania is being held in MetLife Stadium and the HOF ceremony will be in Madison Square Garden.
Sammartino has long been vocal about his disdain for the current wrestling product saying there is too much sex, theatrics and drug abuse including steroids. The former champion has also been critical of WWE CEO Vince McMahon saying McMahon has ruined Vince McMahon Sr's. vision of what professional wrestling was and should be.
According to reports Triple H had been making headway with Sammartino and Punk either went into business for himself with the comments made in the promo or negotiations with Bruno have fallen through and the WWE was making a statement. Many feel that Punk was just trying to continue to solidify his heel persona but making derogatory comments about a former well-respected champion who the WWE wants to include in the HOF so badly seems ridiculous.
"Superstar" Billy Graham, who is a former WWE World Champion and who sold out Madison Square Garden as well as a number of other venues sided with Sammartino and spoke out against CM Punk and the WWE by saying "CM Punk, I have lost all respect for you for not saying no to the writers of the WWE for saying Bruno Sammartino only wrestled once a month in Madison Square Garden. You talk about one of the greatest icons ever in pro wrestling like he was a JOBBER? You should be ashamed of yourself for not having the self-dignity to say NO to the writers on that line. That line you delivered indicates that I am a big loser like Bruno as well and insults me as I wrestled in the same era as Bruno. This only confirms more that I want my name out of the WWE Hall of Fame.
How many monthly sell outs have you yourself drawn at Madison Square Garden? Not a PPV or the Raw TV show. Quit talking trash about Bruno. It’s an insult to him and all the wrestlers of his era including myself!"
Sammartino has, to this point, has remained silent on Punk's comments and there has been no word on the status of the negotiations with him regarding the Hall of Fame.
Follow me on Twitter @jlwiseman13