CM Punk praises former Ring of Honor and current WWE Superstars like Samoa Joe in an interview at UFC 189.
The former WWE champion has shown huge respect for former ROH and current WWE Superstars such as Samoa Joe, Sami Zayn, Kevin Owens, Seth Rollins, and Dean Ambrose for making a success in the WWE.
Punk believes that ROH changed the landscape of the WWE, something he feels acquitted by even after leaving the company.
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Punk said in an interview to SevereMMA.com at UFC 189: "I think it's funny now when you look at the pro wrestling landscape, like all the guys that they're hiring, all the guys that they're putting on television,I can honestly say that I don't know if that happens if a guy like me and a guy like Samoa Joe don't take a chance.
"Everyone is talented in their own right, but everything that I was made fun of and vilified for by management, is now what they're looking for in guys.
"I wear that as a badge of honor. It's a big I f--king told you so. I mean, you should have listened to me in 2005."
In essence, Punk did pave the way for many superstars like him that followed. His championship run and the amount of people that jumped on his bandwagon showed the WWE and the rest of the world that there isn't a generic look for a champion.
It's something that is being implemented in the development leagues of the WWE in NXT, and as they search for the next big thing on the WWE reality TV show Tough Enough.
Punk is hopeful that one day, Samoa Joe can be given a main event shot in the WWE.
He said on the matter: "I hope so. They should. I mean, he deserves it more than anybody.
I sit back and I laugh. I mean, good for all of these guys. I hope they make millions of dollars (so that) they can support their kids and live how they want to live.
"I'm not taking credit for their success, they would have made it eventually somewhere somehow. I just think it's funny that the machine that never wanted me now wants (talent like) me."
Punk's decision to leave wasn't going to be changed, but this last quote would make you think that if they had listened to him, he would still be there today.
"I believed I was the best guy there. Because it is a fake or predetermined sport, I felt like I wasn't getting a fair shake," he said.
"I had been there long enough and heard the same bulls--t to know that I wasn't ever going to get what I wanted so I peaced out, what are you going to do?"