During Friday’s UFC 203 weigh-ins, Mickey Gall extended his hand to CM Punk, and the former WWE star left him hanging.
In the weeks leading up to the weigh-in, Punk and Gall had been cordial to one another. Some people were actually disappointed that they were getting along, because they wanted to see Punk, who was one of the best talkers of all-time in the world of pro wrestling, pull out some of his old pro wrestling tricks to help sell the fight.
The two men had an intense staredown, and Gall was visibly annoyed after Punk refused to shake hands with him. After the weigh-in, Punk was asked by Megan Olivi why he decided to not shake hands with Gall, and what Gall said to him after he left him hanging.
“I don’t know. He was stuttering. He kept repeating, ‘Oh you don’t want to shake my hand, you don’t want to shake my hand’ or something like that. I’m not here to shake anybody’s hand. I’m here to punch people in the face.”
— UFC (@ufc) September 9, 2016
Prior to the weigh-in, there was some concern that CM Punk wouldn’t be able to make weight, as the former WWE star told Ariel Helwani on Wednesday that his weight cut wasn’t going well. But, both Punk and Gall ended up making weight, with Punk weighing in at 170 pounds, and Gall weighing in at 170.5 pounds.
After making weight, Punk expressed some exasperation with his weight cut, saying that it was hard for him to lay off the food.
“I’m not gonna say it was easy. There’s a level of difficulty that goes along with it and I’m a fat kid at heart and I love food and that’s obviously the hardest part.”
— Sports News (@_sports1_) September 2, 2016
Gall is predicting that he’ll finish Punk in the very first round, which is what he’s done to both of his other opponents in his young MMA career. Punk, on the other hand, has guaranteed victory, but he hasn’t made a prediction as to how he’ll end up beating Gall.
On the eve of CM Punk’s UFC debut, some pro wrestlers, including Ryback, who isn’t the biggest fan of Punk, wished the former WWE star luck on Saturday night.
“I respect that he wants to test himself and has the courage to do so. For that reason alone, while I don’t condone him saying the things he said about me, I want to him do well. Any man can beat another man on any given night, so I just hope he achieves what he is looking for in this and I will leave it at that.”
Seth Rollins and Scott Hall also want to see Punk be successful in his UFC debut.
— MMAFighting.com (@MMAFighting) September 9, 2016
The odds makers have Punk listed as the underdog, which isn’t much of a surprise given the fact that we’ve seen Mickey Gall fight twice, and we haven’t seen Punk fight at all, so it would be ridiculous to list the former WWE superstar as the favorite at UFC 203.
CM Punk vs. Mickey Gall will be the third fight on the UFC 203 card, as it will follow Jessica Andrade vs. Joanne Calderwood and Urijah Faber vs. Jimmie Rivera.
The show will be headlined by the heavyweight title fight between Alistair Overeem and Stipe Miocic, and the co-headliner is Travis Browne vs. Fabricio Werdum, which is a fight that will likely determine the number one contender for the heavyweight championship.
Of course, the CM Punk fight is the main attraction in this card, even though it’s not the main event. Most are expecting that Punk will fight again even if he loses badly, so, barring some kind of career-ending injury, this won’t be the only time we see the ex-WWE champ compete inside the Octagon.
[Image via MMA Fighting/Twitter]