Former WWE Champion CM Punk Has Made The Jump To UFC

Fans of professional wrestling still holding out hope for Cult of Personality to fire up during next year’s Royal Rumble match appear to be completely shit out of luck. Former WWE champion, and the self professed “best in the world,” CM Punk has revealed he is making the jump to mixed martial arts, signing a multi-fight deal with the UFC.

Punk made the announcement by showing up at yesterday’s UFC 181 pay-per-view event in Las Vegas in a short interview with UFC announcer Joe Rogan.

Though Punk – who is being billed by UFC as Phil “CM Punk” Brooks – does have a kempo background and has been training extensively in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu with the legendary Rener Gracie, he is not expected to make the same instant splash in the sport that fellow wrestler-cum-fighter Brock Lesnar did when he jumped across to MMA in 2007. UFC boss Dana White has stated that Punk will likely face fighters with a similar record to his own – which at the moment stands at 0-0.

Punk infamously walked out on the WWE back in January, following long simmering disputes with company executives – including Vince McMahon and Paul “Triple H” Levesque – over creative differences and issues with work load and injuries.
It’s likely that Punk will be fighting as either a middleweight or a welterweight, but he distinctly ruled out fighting as a light heavyweight, meaning he’ll be shedding a significant amount of weight if his billed wrestling weight of “220 pounds” is to be believed.
Whether or not Punk has the ability to be successful in the UFC remains to be seen. But his drawing power remains undeniable, as evidenced by the overwhelming reaction to the announcement. But the bottom line of it is probably best said by CM Punk himself, who stated:
I’m here to either get my ass kicked, or to kick somebody’s ass.
Yep. Pretty much.
Photo: Jason Merritt via Getty Images.