Former WWE superstar Ryback left the company on bitter terms last summer, following his frustrations with a contract dispute and the way he was being used by the creative team.
Of course, The Big Guy is not the only wrestler in recent years to leave the WWE because of pay and creative differences. CM Punk also left the WWE after some tension with Triple H and Vince McMahon backstage. Punk walked out on a January 2014 episode of Raw and was eventually fired by the company on his own wedding day.
In fact, Ryback seems to relate quite a bit to CM Punk in this situation. The Big Guy appeared on Colt Cobana’s Art of Wrestling podcast to discuss the matter.
He brought up a specific situation where he bodyslammed Punk who was dealing with a nagging back injury. Here’s what he said about the frustration.
“But I too understand, after going through my own back and shoulder injuries, he was really beat up too during that time period and I am a power wrestler..you never want to hurt a guy that really is injured, so the things he said I think he was just really frustrated too. Again, being in a top spot, I just think it all got grouped together.”
Both Ryback and Punk’s departures from the WWE were far from graceful, as mentioned above. Ryback took time off then mutually parted ways with the company when the contract dispute couldn’t be resolved.
After Punk walked out of Raw, he claimed he wouldn’t return to the company and would get fired shortly after. Punk claimed that his departure from the WWE was for his own health (he had a series of injuries), and his disappointment in not headlining a WrestleMania, despite being promised he’d get his chance.
Ryback and Punk were among the top all-around performers in the WWE for some time. With both men leaving the WWE under controversial circumstances, it’s no wonder that The Big Guy “understands” CM Punk.
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