Fox Sports aired the fourth and final episode of their Evolution of Punk documentary series on Monday. The series chronicles 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, the second episode here, and the third episode recap here. Is Punk getting any more ready to face Mickey Gall at UFC 203 on September 10? Let’s find out!
CM Punk’s first meeting with Mickey Gall was “soccer mom small talk”
We got a lot of cool behind-the-scenes footage of Punk attending Mickey Gall’s first UFC fight, their meeting in the Octagon and their chit-chat afterward. When Gall met with his family after the fight, one of the first things they did was ask about his meeting with Punk. Gall said it was “soccer mom small talk” and that Punk was a nice guy. So Gall is in a small circle of people that Punk has been nice to on first blush.
Mickey Gall has the exact same opinion of CM Punk as everyone else
This week, we got a whole lot of Mickey Gall and his perspective, which is totally fair! We also got his training partners being a bunch of sh*theads about the fight, sarcastically setting up strategy sessions to joke about using chokeslams and Sharpshooters to beat Punk. Which is also totally fair.
No one in the world is taking Punk seriously except Punk, which is probably exactly how Punk prefers things to be. The most poetic thing in history would be Punk coming into the fight and shutting up everyone who badmouthed him. That’s absolutely not going to happen, but it would be great. Regardless how you feel about Punk, him impressing the hell out of you would be the best possible end to this story.
Mickey Gall knows exactly how it’s going to look if he loses to CM Punk
Despite all his camp mockery, Gall knows the one thing he can’t do in this fight is be made to look like a chump. Gall is training his ass off, because he knows his career is essentially over before it begins if he loses to Punk, and particularly if he gets finished.
He’s on the verge of being our generation’s Seth Petruzelli, for better or for worse. He’s going to make a name for himself, whether it be as a hero of MMA or as an all-time goat. And not in the Michael Jordan sense.
Punk is well aware of the history of the building in which he’ll have his first fight
Punk’s first fight in the UFC is going to take place in Cleveland, in the same building where he told Vince McMahon to f*ck off and took his ball and went home. Punk says he likes that this is going to be the location and let’s be honest: this is one hell of a bookend and they probably couldn’t have drawn it up better if they tried. (Note: they totally tried.)
The last Punk sparring session in the documentary sure looked like his partner was taking a dive
The last smoker in the four-part series suuuuuure got a lot of people talking on Twitter, particularly when Punk got his opponent to tap to a rear naked choke with no hooks in. On an opponent that had taken Punk’s back from the guard like 20 seconds earlier.
I’m not a conspiracy theorist and that RNC looked decently deep to me. It might just be a matter of a guy not wanting to risk getting hurt in a sparring session against a green guy with a few seconds left in a sparring round. But people are going to talk, and this editing definitely adds some fuel to a fire that didn’t need any stoking.
Regardless, the difference between Punk’s first smoker and his last one was definitely night and day. He looks competent now and he can think on his feet, throw passable punches and adapt to moderate ground grappling. He’s going to do everything in his power to shut people up on Saturday. He may not be able to, but no one can say he hasn’t put in the work and risked every ounce of his reputation in the service of taking the MMA plunge.
It’s going to be one hell of a night at UFC 203.