CM Punk has agreed a deal to compete in UFC.
Punk – who settled his long-standing legal issues with WWE on October 22 – made the announcement during UFC 181. Punk will debut in 2015 and the deal is a multi-fight contract. During his cageside interview, Punk told UFC announcer Joe Rogan;
“I have a limited window like all fighters do, and I’m here for a fight. This is my new career 100%..This is something that’s been in the back of my mind for a very, very long time. The idea of being able to step inside the Octagon and find out what’s inside myself and test myself is an opportunity that I was not able to deny myself. I don’t think I would be able to live with myself if I didn’t give this a shot.”
Speaking to Fox Sports’ Ariel Helwani, the former WWE champion addressed the criticism that a former wrestler is being given a spot in UFC;
“At the ripe old age of 36 I’m trying to be less of a hot head, and see where people are coming from. And I understand – if that’s your opinion, that’s awesome; it’s my job to change your mind, although that is not going to be one of my hang-ups. I’m not going to deal with negativity. Plus, I think it’s part of the game. There needs to be fighters that call me out and say those things, I just hope somebody is more creative because the ‘fake wrestler’ thing is a little too obvious.”
Speaking of the signing, UFC president Dana White told ESPN;
“He wanted to fight here. He wanted to give it a shot, so we gave him an opportunity. It’s not like Brock Lesnar. We’re not going to throw the kitchen sink at him. Lesnar had a wrestling background. He is going to fight a guy who is 1-0, 1-1, 2-1 — something like that.”
It is believed that UFC are plotting Punk’s debut for their July 2015 PPV show, especially given that the show has a Fan Expo during the preceding weekend.
Meanwhile, WWE have briefly mentioned Punk’s new career choice (without mentioning said career choice) in a post on the company website. The post read;
WWE wishes Phil Brooks (aka CM Punk) the best of luck in his newest endeavor.