Last week, Fox Sports debuted their Evolution of Punk documentary series chronicling the long, long, long journey of CM Punk from the WWE ring to the UFC Octagon. You can find our breakdown of the first episode here, but now it’s on to bigger and better things: the second episode! Is Punk getting any more ready to face Mickey Gall than last week’s terrifying showing? Let’s find out!
CM Punk thinks you have to be crazy to be successful in anything
One of the early trademarks of this show is clearly going to be Punk sharing his deep thoughts during his daily drives to and from Milwaukee. As the second episode opens, Punk is on one of these drives and talks about how craziness drives creativity and success. We get still photos of his WWE days before he gives a perfect example of what he’s talking about: Alexander Graham Bell.
Yes, this is perfectly analogous, Punk. Just as Bell invented the telephone, so too will you … win an MMA fight? Righteous.
Alas, these segments won’t be TOO frequent in subsequent episodes, as later in this week’s episode he and AJ move into an apartment in Milwaukee just to be closer to Roufusport while he remains in training camp.
Lars Frederiksen and AJ Lee hate watching their boy get wrecked
Punk has his second sparring session 12 weeks into training. His opponent for this session is Craig Eckelberg, a welterweight fighter with a 6-2 record. It goes EXACTLY as well as you think it’s going to. Even better, Punk brings along his wife April (AKA AJ Lee) and his good friend Lars Frederiksen, of the band Rancid. They get a cageside seat to watching him get choked and punched.
Later at lunch (more on that later), AJ says that was the most uncomfortable thing ever and she hated watching it. But she doesn’t say it in an unsupportive way!
AJ Lee is bad at steak
Well done, AJ? Why don’t you just eat a Slim Jim and be done with it.
Phil is fat
Punk’s desired weight class is welterweight, which is 170 pounds. Unfortunately, he’s walking around at over 196 with 12 percent body fat.
He’s at a fitness center to get him on the right track regarding diet, nutrition and workout. They put him on a multi-month plan and he starts doing some really intense workouts, in addition to his MMA training. By the end of the episode (many weeks later), Punk has leaned up considerably. But he’ll always be a LITTLE bit pear-shaped. I can relate, buddy.
Also, how crazy is it that even “fat” CM Punk is under the CWC weight limit? And that Seth Rollins walks around at only 12 pounds over that limit? It really is the era of the smaller guy, isn’t it? Thanks, Punk!
His coach didn’t bother teaching him how to throw a proper punch until 24 weeks into training
Late in the episode, Duke Roufus watches Punk hit a heavy bag and gives him some key pointers. Pointers like, “Here is how to throw a punch. Here is how your hand should land. Here is how you should extend your arm. Here is where your head should go.” Literally walking him through punching. In Week 24. I mean, we all knew Punk wasn’t on the accelerated course, but sheesh.
In Week 28, Punk has his third sparring session, this time against Israel Lozano, a 4-2 welterweight. This session ends up being almost all standup, whether intentional or not. Punk takes a lot of shots and lands a lot of shots. At one point, he takes a BIG left hook RIGHT to the jaw and is only phased momentarily, so he doesn’t have a glass jaw or anything. His coaches tell him he is making huge improvements and honestly, he does look a lot better.
Punk calls it his “best day.” Unfortunately, the episode ends with him alluding to the injury that required surgery and pushed back his UFC debut yet again. But we’ll get into all of that next week.