LaBar: CM Punk fans plan to 'hijack' Monday's 'RAW'
“Monday Night RAW” is going to be in Chicago, and fans are attempting to band together to hijack the show.
They plan to do this by voicing their displeasure at Chicago native CM Punk being absent from WWE programming since he went home the day after Royal Rumble.
The fans are going to pay for gas, parking and tickets to get in the building to be mad about something. Oh, and they'll probably buy a CM Punk shirt if some are available at the merchandise counter.
Who's working who?
If fans really wanted to hijack the show, nobody would walk in the building. If it's two minutes until ‘RAW' goes live and there is an almost empty arena, that gets the point across to WWE in one of the biggest markets in the country.
But that won't happen.
As much as the fans are upset about CM Punk leaving, they still will give their money to the “man” all the while trying to stick it to him. That “man” is Vince McMahon, and he has their money, and he has them hooked. They can complain all they want, but those fans are addicted to the product, especially critiquing it. They don't know how to not go to “RAW” if it's in their hometown.
WWE has made the mistake of not addressing the situation. As soon as Punk walked out, I felt they should have quickly addressed it, and it would have helped the situation move on. Not saying anything so far on WWE television has allowed it to be an elephant in the room.
I'm not suggesting the Chicago crowd won't still have strong emotions on the situation. However, I think McMahon should have taken the same action he did when Steve Austin walked out in 2002: Go to the ring and tell the people the truth. Tell them Punk was unhappy with some decisions in the company and went home.
Now, social media accounts are being created to get fans attending “RAW” in Chicago to revolt. Again, it's a revolt they have to pay to perform. There is a reason protestors and hippies are always on public property — they aren't paying the institution they are protesting.
And amid all this, strong rumors of a CM Punk appearance are circulating.
First off, the answer is “no” to those who keep asking me whether Punk would buy a ticket to sit in the crowd. Here's a guy who doesn't like being stopped in airports if he's not in the mood. Here's a guy who in October 2012, during an angle on “RAW,” was standing in the crowd and hit a fan who continued to harass him. You think he's going to sit as a regular patron among a sold-out arena?
Dave Meltzer, legendary wrestling reporter and editor of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, said on his radio show that a top star in WWE has told him that CM Punk definitely is going to come back to WWE programming Monday night during “RAW.” Meltzer has gained a lot of credibility in his decades of reporting. He certainly has the sources for information. A Punk appearance has to be considered.
On the other hand, I think he's reporting what he's being told. But fans have to wonder if he's even being told the truth to begin with. The WWE is well aware of the buzz surrounding this “RAW” in Chicago. It isn't out of the question that false information was leaked on purpose.
Why the false information being leaked?
Because it gives those same “hijackers” hope Punk is going to show up. It ensures they won't actually have the guts to not show up for “RAW.” It's also a big rib on them as they expect Punk's grand return and he doesn't show. Who knows? Maybe WWE thinks the fans could even revolt against Punk by hearing he's a definite to show up and doesn't.
Maybe Punk's music plays and a parody version of him appears a la how WWE treated Bret Hart after the “Montreal Screw Job.” Or better yet, his music plays, and Bad News Barrett appears.
It would all be in the name of entertainment. It would all be in the name of, like it or not, WWE holds the power. Until they stop caring, WWE owns them.
Of course Punk could show up. It's wrestling, anything is possible. I said when he walked out, this eventually will turn into a work. Most everything in wrestling does.
In the meantime, they can all go watch past Punk footage on the WWE Network. You know, another item they gave their money to WWE for. Stay angry, my friends.
Justin LaBar is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7949 or firstname.lastname@example.org.