Former WWE World Heavyweight Champion CM Punk officially signed with the UFC a little over thirteen months ago, and since his signing, he’s probably been the most polarizing figure in all of mixed martial arts, even though he has yet to step inside the octagon.
After CM Punk signed with the UFC, it seemed that every fighter under the sun wanted to fight him in his UFC debut, because they knew that it would be a big fight, which would mean that they would get a big paycheck.
For a little over a year now people have been wondering who was going to win the “CM Punk lottery,” and it appears that we finally have the answer to that question.
On the very first episode of UFC Fight Pass’s new series – Dana White Looking for a Fight– a young MMA fighter by the name of Mickey Gall defeated his opponent in the very first round via rear-naked choke, and then he proceeded to call out CM Punk. The win was the first of Gall’s professional career, so in terms of experience, both he and CM Punk are on the same level, even though Punk is over ten years older than him.
After Gall called Punk out, everybody began to assume that he would be the man to take on Punk whenever the former WWE star was ready to step inside the octagon, and it appears that everybody’s assumption was right on point, as UFC president Dana White announced on TSN’s Off the Record with Michael Landsberg that he had signed Mickey Gall, and should Gall win his UFC debut, which will take place at UFC 196 in February, he’ll be Punk’s debut opponent.
“Well, I might as well break it here, right? So I’m bringing Mickey Gall in, and he’s going to fight a kid named Michael Jackson. They’re going to fight on the prelims on February 6 on Fight Pass. If he wins that fight, Mickey Gall will fight CM Punk, and CM Punk will be there at the fight to watch.”
“[Mickey Gall] is holding a lottery ticket, with really good odds of winning the lottery right now. He said he’s got to get through this fight, and it’s going to be a life-changer for this kid.”
It’s still unknown exactly when CM Punk will fight, but, with Gall’s UFC debut taking place in February, he’ll have five months to prepare for a fight with Punk at UFC 200 in July, if that’s where the UFC wants the fight to take place.
As previously mentioned, Mickey Gall has only had one professional fight, and his opponent at UFC 197, Michael Jackson, has had 21 pro fights, and has a record of 11 wins and 10 losses. It’s also worth noting that Jackson has lost six of his last eight fights, and four of those losses have come by way of knockout.
If Gall ends up defeating Jackson, he’ll almost certainly be the favorite going into his bout with CM Punk, whenever the bout ends up taking place.
As for what the UFC’s backup plan will be if Gall ends up losing, well, that’s not public knowledge, and it’s likely that they don’t even have a backup plan. One would think that they’d just end up giving Jackson the fight against Punk, but the UFC may just be interested in finding a completely new opponent for the former WWE star.
There’s a chance that, if Gall wins, the UFC will announce the date of the CM Punk vs. Mickey Gall fight immediately following Gall’s victory. Many believe that Punk’s debut will take place at UFC 200, which, as previously mentioned, would make a lot of sense, given that Gall’s fight takes place five months before the event.
(Featured image via Mike Roach / Getty Images)