Ever since he inked his deal with the UFC in 2014, CM Punk has faced a litany of questions and criticisms about his choice to test the waters in MMA. Some have wondered if, after nearly two years of preparation, the former WWE superstar was ever going to make his debut.
Now that he is just over two months away from finally making his UFC debut at UFC 203 in Cleveland, Punk knows he’s got a lot questions to answer.
"I know people think this is a publicity stunt, I’m never going to step foot in the Octagon," Punk said when speaking to "The Herd" on Tuesday.
"I look forward to proving them wrong."
To me, it’s not super far fetched to be like oh you know what? What if I put three or four wins together, who’s to say I don’t get a title shot. I’m a very positive thinking person.
— CM Punk
And it appears as though he’s not going to be happy with just making an appearance inside the Octagon. As a matter of fact, Punk says once will more than likely not be enough to satisfy his urge to fight — and there’s even a chance he’ll make a run at the title one day.
"To me, it’s not super far fetched to be like oh you know what? What if I put three or four wins together, who’s to say I don’t get a title shot," Punk said. "I’m a very positive thinking person."
Throughout his two decade-plus run as a professional wrestler, Punk had plenty of naysayers who told him he’d never make it to the top of that profession. He proved them all wrong during a long run with WWE, where he was one of the longest reigning champions in the company’s history.
He fully expected there to be plenty of detractors on the day he signed with the UFC, and declared that he was transitioning from sports entertainment to professional fighting.
Those same people who said he’ll never fight are the same ones who will also say competing for a UFC title is utter lunacy. But Punk isn’t one to listen.
"Of course, I’m not going to saddle myself with this negativity: ‘Oh that’s it for me.’ Because to me in life, it’s so cliche and it’s so corny and it’s ‘Karate Kid’-like, it’s not about you getting knocked down, it’s about how many times you get up. That’s why I train the way I do. I get knocked down in training everyday so on Sept. 10 I won’t get knocked down," Punk said.
"To wrestling fans who say this is B.S. and the ones that say I’m going to fight one time are the same ones that are now saying I’m never going to make it to the Octagon. That’s for them to say — they are entitled to their opinion. And I’m going to prove them all wrong."