WWE Tries to Connect the WWE SmackDown Hacker to CM Punk

It is pretty safe to assume that former WWE Champion CM Punk is not the hacker that has been popping up on Friday Night SmackDown over the past few months. Between Punk's numerous comments about being retired, the reports of Vince McMahon not wanting to work with him and the well-researched ongoing theories about the hacker being Mustafa Ali (and maybe Chad Gable and Xavier Woods), the idea that Punk would suddenly return as part of a midcard mystery gimmick seems like a monumental stretch. But that hasn't stopped both FS1 and WWE from trying to stir up speculation.

The hacker's latest appearance came on this week's WWE Backstage, when they overtook the show's feed and uttered the words "Let the games begin." The tweet that posted the footage of the hack had the words "Do I have everybody's attention now?" flipped upside down, a catchphrase Punk used often during the 2011 "Summer of Punk."

Both Renee Young and Mark Henry (on Busted Open Radio) have also speculated Punk's involvement. The "Straight-Edge Superstar" will be back on WWE Backstage next week, and will probably address the speculation there.

Punk even responded to the hacker's tweet.

Punk's last appearance on Backstage had him talking about the hot new trend in WWE, the Cinematic Matches.

"It's good and it's bad," Punk said. "If I had to pick which one [from WrestleMania] is my favorite Boneyard runs away with it because you've got a strong character like The Undertaker. This guy gets away with [it], this guy shoots lightning out of his hands, you know. He has the currency with the fans where he can get away with doing some hokey stuff. The sound effects with strikes and stuff, I can forgive that.

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"If you do that with guys who don't have currency with fans I think it exposes guys, it hurts them more than it helps them. In certain situations, big thumbs up," he continued. "In other situations, I think don't beat it into the ground and save it so it's special."

WWE's next installment, which Vince McMahon has referred to as "mini movies" will take place this Sunday at Money in the Bank with 12 men and women battle through WWE Headquarters to grab the two Money in the Bank briefcases placed on the roof.