WWE: Muting CM Punk fan reaction may have just backfired

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The WWE has continued its attempt to downplay the departure of superstar CM Punk, with the WWE Network this time taking center stage as the at times juvenile battle continues.

As reported by Nick Paglino of WrestleZone, those in charge of the Network opted to mute the loud fan reaction to CM Punk's name when airing their WWE 2k15 roster reveal special this week.

Silence is golden

Fans could be heard giving a warm reaction to the names of numerous other superstars from past and present, from Hulk Hogan to John Cena, as each name was announced by hosts Stone Cold Steve Austin and Renee Young.

But, when it came to news that CM Punk would indeed be included in the upcoming video game, the Network, as Paglino notes, ensured that the real reaction to the ever-popular wrestler could not be heard - instead giving viewers complete silence in its place.

Pointless move

We can only assume this was in order to save face what with the seemingly never ending fall out from Punk's decision to leave the WWE continuing to make Vince McMahon and co look bad.

Since his departure many fans have been quick to put their support behind CM Punk and blame WWE for their handling of the situation and as such the organization were never likely to promote this via their own official channels, assuming the reaction to Punk at the reveal was positive.

Nevertheless it seems a fairly childish move that, now it has been revealed, shows that the two sides are as far away as ever from patching things up.

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Fallout continues

CM Punk last appeared in the WWE way back in January at the Royal Rumble event and saw his contract officially run out over the summer. During this time there have been reports of legal action, wrestler's backing both sides, and crazy rumors of a CM Punk return still in the pipeline.

The WWE even had a fire sale of CM Punk merchandise on their official website last month.

It is in relation to the WWE 2k15 game reveal that fans attempted to cheer for CM Punk at that has caused perhaps most unrest however.

It was reported recently that Punk's legal team had sent a 22-page legal document to the WWE outlining his issues with their continued use of his face and likeness on products such as WWE 2k15 - a move that very nearly saw the game release delayed.

Their decision to mute the reaction to CM Punk's inclusion on the game therefore may well have been an attempt to keep him out of the headlines as the Network brought the recent marquee reveal to a wider audience.

Vince McMahon
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