The jury is still out on CM Punk.
After signing with Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) in late 2014, Punk’s mixed martial arts (MMA) debut has been put off due to one setback or another.
As he gears up to make his highly-anticipated debut at UFC 203 on Sept. 10, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio, against Mickey Gall, fight fans and critics alike will finally have their questions answered regarding his fighting skill.
And while the expectations may be mixed, for Punk — real name Phil Brooks — his have stayed the same since committing to MMA.
"It’s a case-by-base basis. I don’t know what the expectations are," Punk recently told MMA Junkie. "I know what my expectations are. I know what my team and my coach – what they expect out of me. I think it depends on what corner of the media or the Internet you look at to see what the expectations are. People expect me to get knocked out. People expect me to get starched in 30 seconds. The people who see me work here every day expect me to win."
More from his UFC 203 media scrum here.
After leaving WWE on a sour note, Punk feels happy with his new career choice and says he’s the happiest he’s ever been. A win, of course, would make everything that much better.
"My expectations are to win – go out there, whether it goes three rounds, whether it goes three seconds, that’s what I expect," he said. "I expect to show up in the best shape of my life, happiest I’ve ever been, and happy looking in the mirror before the fight knowing, job well done."
Gall made his own successful Octagon debut earlier this year, taking out Mike Jackson at UFC Fight Night 82 via first-round submission. While still green in the sport, he does have four more fights under his belt than Punk.
And in this sport, that’s a world of difference.