When the UFC announced it had signed Punk to a deal, back in 2014, the decision immediately sparked debate. For fans / supporters of the former pro-wrestling star, it was an intriguing move. For purists and many fighters, however, signing a guy who has never fought in a pro MMA bout was unconscionable. Particularly since there are thousands of fighters around the world, with a lot of experience, who have yet to step into the Octagon.
Well, with Punk’s debut set to go down at UFC 203, Mir recently had this to say on his Phone Booth Fighting podcast:
“I’m gonna be honest, it pisses me off. I don’t like it. I’m trying to be impartial and not be a dick but the more we talk about this the more I’m getting angry at the situation because it’s bullsh*t. This is not a legitimate fight. This is not a legitimate UFC fight. We have these kind of fights in boxing … they have those celebrity matchups where it’s a name guy that shouldn’t be in there getting in there with somebody that has a novelty to it and people might turn it on for the novelty act behind it but you wouldn’t have it on the undercard of a Mayweather fight. They wouldn’t put those two together and the fact that we are putting that on there doesn’t sit well with me.”
As noted above, Mir certainly isn’t the only person who feels this way. It will be interesting to see, however, if any of the critics’ opinions change, provided Punk can score a nice win over Mickey Gall. The latter has shown some serious promise, and as a result, is a considerable favorite to defeat Punk on Saturday.
UFC 203 will be hosted by the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. In the headliner, heavyweight champ Stipe Miocic will take on Alistair Overeem.