After former professional wrestling superstar CM Punk lost in the first round of his UFC debut, company president Dana White said that the ex-WWE star’s next fight probably shouldn’t be in the UFC. But, it looks like Punk will probably get another shot in the world’s biggest mixed martial arts promotion after all.
While speaking with MMA Fighting, CM Punk’s coach — Duke Roufus — said that he believes that Punk will get another shot in the UFC and that his next fight is probably four or five months away.
“Things are looking hopeful. I can’t say yes or no, but they’re looking hopeful. We’re going to see. Dana’s always got a good recipe of what he’s going to create, and what’s best for the sport, and what’s best for Punk and everyone else.”
CM Punk added an estimated 100,000 extra buys to the UFC 203 show, which was headlined by the heavyweight championship fight between Stipe Miocic and Alistair Overeem.
While speaking with Ariel Helwani on the MMA Hour, Punk seemed confident that he’ll get another shot in the UFC, and he said that he wants to fight again as soon as possible. He also said that he’s spoken with Dana White about what they should do with him next, but he wouldn’t reveal any further details about their conversations.
The popular belief is that, if the UFC lets Punk fight in their organization again, they’ll put him against Mike Jackson, who also has a record of 0-1. Also, Jackson and Punk are on the same level in terms of skill, so it would be an even match up.
If you don’t remember who Mike Jackson is, he’s the guy who Mickey Gall defeated in his UFC debut back in February. Like Punk, Jackson also lost to Gall via submission, although Punk lasted a couple minutes longer than Jackson did.
There’s a chance that the UFC will put CM Punk on one of their big Fox cards, as he would undoubtedly draw a huge rating. The next UFC on Fox show takes place on January 15, and it’s a show that’s in desperate need for a fight that’ll draw a big rating. As of this writing, the card will be headlined by BJ Penn — who is making his return to the UFC after deciding to come out of retirement — and Yair Rodriguez. Of course, if Punk were to fight on that show, it wouldn’t fit Roufus’ four- to five-month timeline. But, Punk would probably be down to fight on that card.
It’s probably safe to say that CM Punk will fight in the UFC again, simply because if they were planning to cut him, they would’ve done it already. It’s been several months since his loss at UFC 203, and, as of this writing at least, he’s still under contract to them.
If the UFC does actually decide to cut Punk, he’ll probably end up in Bellator MMA, which is the UFC’s chief competitor.
Whether he fights for the UFC, Bellator, or a small, regional promotion, CM Punk is dead set on continuing his mixed martial arts career. Whether or not it’s a smart move remains to be seen, but at the age of 38, it doesn’t seem likely that he’ll develop into an elite MMA fighter.
Will Punk continue to pursue his MMA dream if he gets crushed again in his next fight? It’s possible, but if he loses again in the UFC, the company will probably cut him immediately following the fight. But, if the rumors are true, and he ends up in the Octagon with Mike Jackson, he’ll have a pretty good shot at winning.
[Featured Image by David Dermer/AP Images]