In July of 2011, CM Punk became one of the most popular WWE superstars of all-time. After a 5-star match with John Cena at Money in the Bank, Punk cemented his legacy. At that time, it was only the beginning for Punk and his ascension to the top of WWE. He defeated the flag-bearer of the WWE and moved forward.
One thing about Punk that always found success was his merchandise. Punk’s WWE shirts were selling so much that he actually out-sold Cena in 2011.
For those that have followed the WWE, it’s a rare feat to out-sell Cena in merchandise sales. One reason being, Cena won’t turn heel. Heel turns kill merchandise sales. The WWE focuses on Cena because the children buy his gear. WWE executes brilliant business with just the merchandise sales alone.
There’s one man that believes CM Punk’s merchandise sales were held down during the latter-stages of his WWE career. Konnan, a former-WCW wrestler, is known to embellish the truth about WWE and other wrestling news. Keep that in mind when reading this excerpt from Konnan’s latest tirade on WWE. On an edition of MSL Radio, Konnan spoke on why CM Punk never outsold John Cena in merchandise.
“When CM Punk was red hot and started to outsell the John Cena merchandise, I know people that work in the company in the merchandise department, I know people that work the arenas and sell the merchandise, and I can tell you exactly what WWE did: as soon as John Cena started getting outsold by CM Punk, they made three additional John Cena designs, they refused to make a second CM Punk design and they started undershipping the CM Punk design on purpose. For every CM Punk shirt they would ship to the arena, they would triple John Cena shirts and they would do three John Cena designs. So every 10 shirts in the arena, if nine are Cena, only one is Punk. Punk is going to sell out right away because they didn’t send enough and at the end of the night they’re going “Oh John Cena quadrupled Punk’s merchandise.” Of course he did! Because you’ve purposely created a situation where it would be impossible for CM Punk to outsell John Cena.”
Remember, Konnan could possibly be stretching the truth a bit. One of the main reasons why CM Punk didn’t out-sell John Cena after 2011 was due to Punk’s heel turn. Not only that, but WWE had Cena go up against the Rock at WrestleMania 29. Cena had a least a few t-shirts come out, especially the “Rise Above Hate” shirt that everybody loved.
Perhaps Konnan had issues with WWE merchandising before, although that’s very unlikely, seeing as Konnan never worked for the WWE. A lot of factors went into Punk not out-selling Cena in merchandise after his huge face run at the end of 2011, which continued for half of 2012.
It truly is shame for WWE fans, because there are plenty of things WWE could’ve done with Punk if he had stayed. One thing is for sure; he’d be rivaling Cena in merchandise sales on a daily basis.
[Image via bleachereport.com]