ROH has named CM Punk as the latest addition to its inaugural Hall of Fame class joining The Briscoes, Bryan Danielson, and Samoa Joe.
Punk started with Ring of Honor during its first year of operations, debuting on the All-Star Extravaganza card in November 2002 after gaining buzz through his matches with IWA: Mid-South and other independents.
Punk had a well-remembered program throughout 2003 with Raven, which saw the two take the feud outside of ROH to NWA TNA and MLW.
While in ROH, Punk and Raven had a series of matches, which included Punk defeating Raven in a “Raven’s Rules” match in March 2003, Punk winning a dog collar match at Death Before Dishonor that year, Raven winning a Clockwork Orange House of Fun match, and the feud ending when Punk won a steel cage match in November.
As a member of The Second City Saints with Colt Cabana, the two won the ROH tag titles twice in 2004. The duo defeated The Briscoes in April and regained them from the same team the following month.
Perhaps Punk’s most famous program was with Samoa Joe where the two had a pair of time limit draws for the ROH championship, setting up a third match where Joe beat Punk.
The first draw occurred on June 12, 2004, with Joe and Punk going to a 60-minute draw as Joe was deep into his championship run. They came back and did another time limit draw on October 16th with the show simply billed as ‘Joe vs. Punk II”.
On December 4th at All-Star Extravaganza, Joe pinned Punk to retain the title in their last singles match inside of an ROH ring.
Punk became ROH champion in June 2005 defeating Austin Aries at Death Before Dishonor III and launching the first “Summer of Punk”.
It was public knowledge that Punk had signed with WWE and teasing he would take the title and deliver it to Vince McMahon.
Punk lost the belt on August 12th in a four-way elimination match that included Samoa Joe and Christopher Daniels and was won by James Gibson.
Punk was also the first head trainer at the ROH Dojo in Philadelphia, a role he took in 2003.
Punk delivered a taped message at Final Battle in December for the promotion’s “End of an Era” event.
The Hall of Fame episode for ROH will air over the weekend on March 5th with a special retrospective episode on Punk airing this weekend in syndication.