The 44-year-old former AEW, WWE and ROH champion started the show with a fiery promo about his intentions upon returning to the ring but it was what he said after the cameras stopped rolling at the United Center in Chicago which should resonate with people more.
After winning the main event trios with his partners FTR over Samoa Joe, Jay White and Juice Robinson, Punk addressed his hometown fans and brought one supporter into the ring who was holding a sign that read 'Support LGBTQ+ Kids.'
He added that he had recently received backlash for an Instagram story that promoted an ice cream bar with sales of the dessert going to a trans youth charity. Punk said that he didn't respond to any of the comments because "You can't argue with stupid."
\u201cwelcome back @CMPunk \n\ni love pro wrestling\u201d
Punk then launched into a heartfelt message about why he supports trans kids, bringing up his own experiences of growing up as a straight-edge punk.
He said: "The reason I support trans kids, trans-grown-ups, gays, and lesbians is because I know when I was growing up, I didn't fit in anywhere. That it was because of the clothes I wore, what my hair looked like, and the music I listened to. Those are all things I can rectify. I can comb my hair, I can listen to jazz, I don't know what.
But to be somebody who's gay, lesbian, and especially trans, I don't know what it feels like to be trapped in a body that I don't feel I belong in. That is why I support that Support Trans kids, support gay and lesbian rights. I want everyone to be themselves."
Refreshingly, Punk's message appeared to go down well with the Chicago faithful and has been widely supported by wrestling fans on social media.
\u201cI was feeling a lot tonight after what CM Punk said when #AEWCollision went off air, so in honor of the respective times these two vocalized trans support with fan signs, I say thank you Kenny and Punk. It means the world hearing that kind of support.\u201d
\u201c@ShiningPolaris As a trans woman who loves wrestling, I am happy someone spoke out, but can we talk about how it is always cm punk who\u2019s always speaking out? I love it first. It was abortions now, which is why I will always love him.\u201d
\u201ci need all my trans followers and any other queer person to watch this. this is @CMPunk at an @AEW show in Chicago talking about supporting trans rights. Listen to this audience and how much they support us. It's scary out there, but let this give you hope. We are loved\ud83d\udc95\ud83c\udff3\ufe0f\u200d\u26a7\ufe0f\ud83c\udff3\ufe0f\u200d\ud83c\udf08\u201d