In July 2014, just weeks after his contract with WWE expired, CM Punk declared his retirement from professional wrestling. Punk’s last appearance on WWE television was at the January “Royal Rumble” event where he remained in the contest longer than anyone else, only to be eliminated near the match’s conclusion by Kane. Fans in Eastern Iowa and worldwide have almost certainly seen the last match of a top star of twenty-first century wrestling.
While that battle royal looks to be Punk’s final sojourn into the squared circle, the man born Phil Brooks left an indelible legacy on professional wrestling through his fifteen year career. Whether it was in IWA Mid-South, Ring of Honor, ECW or on the main WWE roster, CM Punk became a star wherever he worked. He held the world titles of all four aforementioned promotions and even earned the moniker “the longest-reigning WWE Champion of the modern era” from WWE for his 434 day run with the WWE title.
His modern appearances might be limited to seventh inning stretches at Cubs games and commentary on AMC’s “Talking Dead”, but Punk’s wrestling career features numerous highlights. This list covers five of the best moments in that long career.