Why People Hate CM Punk, WWE Officials Concerned About Brock Lesnar?, Shane McMahon Getting Rich Outside Of WWE, Contingency Plans If Cena Can't Work, Top Star Out Indefinitely

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The 290th installment of the WNW Premium Mailbag is complete and is available in written format! Today's Premium Mailbag features questions that were sent from Sunday, April 28th to today. To submit your question for a future installment of the Premium Mailbag, click here.

In your opinion, what is the IWC's problem in regards to CM Punk? I know you read the comments as I do. They were all over him before his huge push and now they are all against him. What gives?

There are three types of people that do not like CM Punk. First, you have the people getting worked by the heel turn. They don't like him because of his over-the-top antagonistic personality and are more inclined to follow the tides of the storylines even though they are "smarter" than your average mark.

Secondly, there are people that used to like Punk but grew tired of his 434-day reign as WWE Champion. When Punk caught fire in 2011, he was the ultimate rebel. I don't think it's a stretch to say it was the most entertaining character turn in the last five years. However, once Punk made it to the top, this group of people grew tired of him staying there. They suffer from CM Punk burnout and wanted to see something different - even if that meant John Cena as WWE Champion. The same thing happened with people like Randy Orton and Triple H when they had 200+ day title reigns. People liked them at first but bailed when their reigns seemed never-ending.

Finally, there are people that just don't like CM Punk, whether he's babyface or heel. Punk is extremely outspoken and opinionated. Sometimes his mouth gets him in trouble and rubs people the wrong way. Even before Punk "made it" as a top star in WWE, there was always a long list of people that would line up to bury him because they didn't like him. Punk knew how to play the game of politics and stayed over with the right people.

Does Vince McMahon or anyone backstage ever worry about Brock Lesnar being reckless and careless in the ring or is that just how Brock is made to look?

Brock Lesnar is an odd case. The guy can wrestle, he was an NCAA national champion and he knows the basic principles of amateur wrestling. These basic abilities play a large role in whether or not someone can work as professional wrestler. Obviously one doesn't have to learn how to "bump" as an amateur but generally speaking, when someone can work as an amateur, they are more inclined to have success as a professional wrestler.

However, despite Brock's wrestling background and natural talent, he hasn't exactly "wowed" anyone with his ring work since returning to WWE last year. Part of this is by design. Two out of three of his matches have had "hardcore" gimmicks (an "Extreme Rules" match against John Cena and a No Holds Barred Match against Triple H). This trend will continue at Extreme Rules this month with a steel cage match.

The gimmicks allow WWE to book the matches more as "fights" rather than competitive pro wrestling bouts. After all, they want to make sure their guys come out looking good, while Lesnar, the part-time outsider, is used as the must-see spectacle. See, Brock is getting paid a lot of money in WWE but he's not "in it to win it" so it speak. Brock is back with WWE because they were the highest bidder for his services. He's not here because he "loves the business" or "wants to give back," he's here because he's making seven figures.  And there's nothing wrong with that and he shouldn't be demonized because of it.

So to answer your question, yes, Brock is a little reckless. It isn't something that "causes concern" as WWE knows what they are getting with him. He's raw, he's massive and he's someone that people want to see. One cannot, however, accuse him of being apathetic as he is in great shape and has done everything that has been asked of him.

What are your thoughts on Shane McMahon?

Shane McMahon is a smart businessman, just like his father, grandfather and great grandfather. I can't help but have respect for what he's done as an executive, making a name for himself outside of WWE as the Chief Executive Officer of You on Demand Holdings Inc. . Shane obviously had a top position with WWE for life, however, he realized Vince was grooming Triple H to take the reigns and wanted to try something else.

It's not something that was easy and even strained their father-son relationship. Vince wasn't expecting Shane to resign. In the end, Shane can say he "made it" on his own and that's not something a lot of people in his position can boast.

Do you know how much money he made last year under his currently position? According to Reuters, the younger McMahon raked in $251,875.

If John Cena misses Extreme Rules because of injury, how would you go about booking the PPV?

Well thankfully this doesn't look to be an issue as the latest word on John Cena is his injury wasn't as bad as originally thought and he is scheduled to defend the WWE title at Extreme Rules. If he would be unable to go, I think you have to try and get another part-time name on the show. I'm not sure Triple H vs. Brock Lesnar III could sell it with Brock's limited schedule and I would probably look to do something with The Shield and Undertaker. However, it doesn't look like it's going to come to that and Cena will be able to work.

If Cena had suffered the worst case scenario, an Achilles tendon tear, there would have to be a serious set of discussions about what to do with the WWE title. Obviously Cena would have had to be stripped of the title and replaced but that would have been a very complex and difficult situation to address.

If CM Punk is out for an extended period of time, could you see him come back as a commentator like he did before he started his run with the Nexus?

I wouldn't mind seeing CM Punk on commentary but the whole idea of giving Punk time off is to allow him separation from the wrestling business. Punk is beaten down and burnout and requested time off to let his body heal and get a chance to do some "me" things. It's a good idea to keep Punk away as they can possibly allow, letting him collect his downside, while he recharges his batteries.  This is why CM Punk is considered to be out "indefinitely," not because of one serious injury.

The guy is coming off a run where he was "the guy," and his knees were hurting baldy after Wrestlemania. He's lucky he doesn't need any surgeries but there is no reason to try and hotshot him back into storylines, only to end up suffering a serious injury that requires surgery.

Rey Mysterio is one that comes to mind that tried to rush a return from a knee injury and ended up right back on the shelf.

Please note: We aren't doing away with the "audio" mailbags. I just like to type one up every now and then to appease those that prefer written. Since we just had an audio installment on Sunday, I opted to type this one out.

Send all Premium Mailbag questions to: [email protected]

  • Jeff Lile

    I very much enjoy the “written” premium mailbags. Trying to listen to the “audio” mailbags can be troublesome at work (try to explain hearing a “babyface takes bumps” to your boss) or at home with the wife and kids. I’d be in full support of you doing most or all premium mailbags in this format.

    • Captain America

      NEGATIVE!!! Am I the only one that cuts his grass while listening to Richards sweet sweet voice!. Now!! Not only do I not have it, for grass cutting, but now this is another thing I have to read!!! Also!.. I know i am not the only guy that read the whole thing in your head using Richard’s voice!.. I didn’t even get to here the trademark “.. I AM” Richard Gray!..”

      • Haha. We’ll never stop the audio mailbags just as we’ll never stop the written Backstage News or the Weekly Newsletters.

        • Patrick

          the written mailbag is all right but my favorite is the audio mailbag.

  • Patrick

    then there is the fan like me who 1: is a big CM Punk Fan, 2:doesn’t get tired of seeing him on top or with a long title reign. ( Since I’m a Old School Wrestling Fan who enjoys long titles reigns ) 3: enjoys his extremely outspoken and opinionated. personnality. (and others like him ) and he doesn’t rub me the wrong way with what he says.

  • LeftyTosser

    Richard, I fully agree with Jeff on preferring the written mailbag. Typically I won’t listen to the audio, but always check out the written version when you do it. I can read way faster than you talk so it takes far less time.

    Also, one point you failed to mention on Lesnar. Even though he has a strong amateur background, he wrestles like crap. He hasn’t gotten better or worse than his first run in WWE. He couldn’t wrestle then and he can’t wrestle now. He is a brawler which really does limit the appeal over a longer term when he is being seen frequently. He fits an occasional schedule much better at keeping people’s interest. Seeing him more often would really burn people out on the character.
    On Punk, there are also a portion of the fan base that just flat out don’t like jerks and Punk comes across as being a top shelf jerk, even as a face. Some folks just can’t support someone they don’t feel they can trust (face or heel).

  • Stoney

    I Remember in 2002 when he injured hardcore Holly’s neck and he was out for a year. But holly sandbagged the powerbomb and had a reputation for being stiff and uncooperative with rookies so he kind of asked for it.

  • Stoney

    What I hated about about punks wwe title reign was that he headlined 5 out of 14 ppvs (2 against cena, 1 against rock and 2 when cena wasn’t even on the ppv card) and cena headlined 7, hhh vs lesnar and the royal rumble headlined the others). I know cena is the cash cow of wwe but doesn’t mean vince has to put the wwe championship on the backburner

  • Must admit I do prefer the written mailbags too. Nothing to do with accent/quality/etc, but I have a horrid attention span and for some reason I never absorb information from podcasts. But I can read through these absolutely perfectly.

    If you don’t plan on them being written except in circumstances where you can’t record them, perhaps you could chuck someone a few dollars each week to transcribe them? I wouldn’t mind them being a day or two late in return for getting to see them written, and that way everyone’s happy!

    Nonetheless, keep up the awesome work!

  • I’m pretty sure the main reason you see people “hate” on Punk is because a lot of the IWC act like everything he does is the best thing they have every seen.

  • Jamie

    I got bored of Punk, he had his rant, then that was it, to my it sounds like turned into something he said he disliked.