As of 2016 C M Punk is valued over US dollars, most of which has been due to his popularity with the WWE. He has won the ‘Money in the bank’ twice and has cashed in the opportunity to make a huge amount of money through his pure passion for the industry.
Although Punk turned a sizable profit after his brief tenure in the UFC so far, we take a look at how CM Punk strived throughout his life to earn that net worth of his.
Phil Brooks was not your average high school going, guy. He dressed different didn’t drink, smoke drugs, in short, had a hard time finding and keeping company. He even left his parents to stay in his friend’s basement.
CM Punk net worth – $8 million
He found the Straight Edge way of living and one person pulled him towards the sport of wrestling; that person was none other than Rowdy Roddy Piper. Here’s what he once said about his idol:
“Look at this guy on TV nobody likes him, look at me, nobody likes me; he wears this skirt people make fun of him for the way he dresses; people make fun of me the way I dress; he is not the biggest guy but he has got the biggest mouth. Holy Crap… I am Rowdy Roddy Piper!! That’s my ticket I am gonna be Rowdy Roddy Piper and make all the money.”
C M Punk started his own wrestling federation in his backyard LWF (Lunatic Wrestling Federation) and got popular. They used to have 200-300 people on weekends. Business picked up the LWF started booking halls, renting proper wrestling equipment.
These shows were also attended by around 1000 people at times. But then in a major turn of events, Punk’s brother embezzled money from him, and they have never talked since.
Punk rose through ranks of the independent wrestling scene like none before, quickly make his way through IWA to ROH. After a short stint at TNA, he finally got signed by the WWE.
Punk travelled the country every week, and this passion of also made him the first-ever head coach at the ROH School of wrestling. Punk also made money through royalties from his DVD Joe vs. Punk II, which was the best-selling ROH DVD at that time.
WWE: The beginning
Even in the WWE C M Punk was not welcomed, he was in the OVW (developmental territory for WWE) until Paul Heyman saw him. Under his tutelage, C M Punk became the main guy on ECW.
Punk earned about $300,000 to $400,000 yearly, from 2006-2008 while he was in ECW, which was much higher than the other wrestlers like The Miz, (about $100,000) who started their careers at the same time.
In 2008, CM Punk cashed in his Money In The Bank contract on his first night on RAW, to become the new World Heavyweight Champion.
Fast forward to 2011 Punk has become the 19th Triple Crown Champion and the fastest one to do so (203 days since winning the 1st title). He also led Straight Edge Society, New Nexus won the WWE Championship and left with the title!!! Yes, he left but came back with one the most lucrative contracts one can get (except Cena, Rock, and Triple H).
Punk returned and signed a 7-year contract which fetched him a Million dollars in salary during 2011. Well, he also wanted his own collector’s cups, private jet, C M Punk the Movie and demanded Vince McMahon, to bring back the WWE Ice Cream bars and have his name on them!!
Apart from that, he had a personal tour bus assigned to him. First class travel and accommodation and a 3.25 % royalties of all his merchandise. In fact, his merch sale was on par with Cena’s, which was an impressive non-wrestling feet to achieve in WWE. The Summer of Punk had begun.
In 2012-13, he roped up $1.3 million, and in 2013-14 Punk got paid $1.7 million dollars, for his services as he held the WWE title for 434 days straight. By the next year, his salary was cut by almost half a million dollars.
His net worth would reach $5 Million by the end of 2014. C M Punk was on the cover of the WWE 2K13 video game. The ‘Best in the World’ definitely would have made a lot of money through this medium as well because a top guy, who features in the game usually makes around 200,000 dollars and then some.
WWE: The end
According to his contract in 2015, Punk could have been paid another 1.3 Million, $1.8 million in 2016 and around 2 million dollars in 2017, but he decided to cut his ties with the company after the 2014 royal rumble match.
Punk was in a legal battle with the WWE throughout 2014, as he was fired by the company on his wedding day. WWE withheld Punk’s royalties, Punk lawyered up and won not only against WWE but also against 2K who advertised C M Punk for their WWE 2K15 video game even after he left the company.
“Thanks for the big fat check” – C M Punk to 2K sports on Colt Cabana’s Podcast.
WWE played dirty after the incident removing Punk’s merchandise from their WWEshop.com and returned ‘C M Junk’ whenever one searched for ‘C M Punk’!!
Also during his career, he was out of WWE studio movies and was rejected to bring in outside sponsors for wrestlers. C M Punk termed his wrestling career as a failure, as he didn’t Main event a Wrestlemania, but truth be told, he was a misfit in WWE as they both had a different vision for the wrestling business.
UFC: A new passion
Moving on from pro-wrestling C M Punk signed with the UFC. He always wanted to test himself as an MMA fighter. Since he signed in 2014, there was a lot of buzz surrounding his debut. It helped UFC turn a lot of casual viewers, who knew how big a name CM Punk was, to the octagon, as Punk fought his first fight in September 2016.
The Chicago native made a whopping $500,000 in a losing effort. He faced a lot of backlash from fellow UFC fighters for the amount he was paid. Facts justify this salary as Punk’s fight was likely responsible for an additional 125,000-225,000 PPV buys. Punk also took home $2,500 in Reebok sponsor pay.
Apart from that he also featured in a 5 episode series ‘The Evolution of Punk’, where we saw how punk trained to become an MMA fighter.
We got to see his 2 million-dollar humble abode, in Chicago. This mansion has 5 bedrooms, a 2 storeyed living room, a gym, a Jacuzzi installed in his master bathroom and 3 garages. He also has a Tattoo parlour built on the first floor of his house.
Comic Books: The inner nerd
C M Punk is a self-proclaimed nerd and had his childhood dream come true when he wrote an introduction for Marvel’s 2012 Avengers vs. X-men. He has also co-written Marvel’s Thor #1 in 2015 and is contributing to the ongoing Marvel’s comic book series DRAX.
Punk has also been associated with Nerdist Industries and has featured in their YouTube videos and has been a part of their coverage team for the San Diego Comic Cons.
It is safe to say Punk’s evaluation could have been more if he would have stuck around, but he did what he had to do. Nevertheless, he is into a new career of Mixed Martial Arts, which might take him to new heights and make him worth way more than he is currently.
Making money was never Punks passion, he does what he likes, regardless of what the world has to say. He is a brand by now and will get paid whatever he demands. I guess you could call that a successful life.