Former WWE star Phil “CM Punk” Brooks took part in the official weigh-in for his mixed martial arts debut at UFC 203 tomorrow night in Cleveland live on Pay Per View. The weigh-ins took place earlier this morning with a public weigh-in scheduled for later today. Punk, who successfully weighed in at 170 pounds, will take on newcomer Mickey Gall.
The former WWE Champion announced back in December 2014 at UFC 181 that he had signed a multi-fight deal with the UFC to begin his journey in the sport, just 11 months after he walked out on WWE at a RAW taping in Cleveland. Punk returns to that same venue to try and prove the MMA world wrong on Saturday night.
Punk comes into the fight a huge underdog against Mickey Gall (2-0 MMA, 1-0 UFC). He’s +250 according to Perry Port of My Top Sportsbooks. The pressure is certainly on with Saturday night being Punk’s first ever professional MMA fight on one of the biggest stages. Add in a sold out a crowd in Cleveland to the mix and you have a very interesting situation for any fan of combat sports.
The fight between Punk and Gall had been originally slated to open the main fight card of UFC 203 and has now been shifted to the third fight of the night. This puts the fight just before the co-main event of Fabricio Werdum vs. Travis Browne and the main event for the UFC Heavyweight Championship between champion Stipe Miocic and challenger Alistar Overeem. A majority of the advertising for UFC 203 has centered around the former WWE star in recent weeks including media obligations.
Punk has spent the last year and half training with the very well respected Duke Roufus at Roufusport in Milwaukee. He noted in a recent interview with the UFC that everything he has been taught by his coaches at Roufusport will be on display this Saturday night in Cleveland and wants to do everything he can to make his team and his coaches proud.
Whether or not pro wrestling fans decide to tune in is another question.
We asked on our official Twitter page if pro wrestling fans plan to purchase UFC 203 this Saturday. 77% said no. Whether that means Punk largely being out of the spotlight for the last two years will play a role with interest in his fight with that demographic remains to be seen. It’s also fair to wonder how future Punk fights in UFC do whether he wins or loses.
— Wrestleview.com (@wrestleview) September 8, 2016
UFC has posted highlights of the UFC 203 pre-fight press conference on Thursday before the weigh ins took place earlier today featuring comments from Punk and Gall.
We will have coverage of the weigh-ins later today beginning at 6:00 p.m. ET (5:00 CT) along with live coverage of the fight this Saturday night.