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Archive for the ‘UFC | Mixed Martial Arts’

Brock Lesnar Says WWE CEO Does It Better Than UFC Prez

August 18, 2015 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts, Videos, WWE | Pro Wrestling

Former WWE and UFC champ Brock Lesnar is quite the charmer…well at least he was on Tuesday’s ESPN Sportscenter. Lesnar appeared on ESPN to hype up SummerSlam, talk about the conquering the streak, and even took a shot at his former boss.

The WWE is getting a huge boost of credibility from the mainstream this week on ESPN. ESPN is hyping SummerSlam more than they have hyped any other WWE show in recent memory (or ever). Brock Lesnar returned to ESPN to appear on Sportscenter and talked about a variety of subjects, but one particular comparison is drawing immediate headlines.

Lesnar was asked about UFC president’s recent comment about the WWE being “fake.”

@RKORollins I hear u bro but fake shit should be 9.99 – @DanaWhite

Lesnar took the defensive side in favor of pro wrestling, defending the honor of his current profession. Brock also said what hardcore UFC fans don’t want to hear, in that what Dana is promoting is the “same racket.” It was what Lesnar said next that is bound to get under the skin of his former boss.

“I think Vince McMahon is better at it than Dana and that might rub Dana the wrong way.”

A couple of things here. One, Brock said that without being provoked. It wasn’t as if the interviewer asked him who was better. Two, no matter what Dana says about Brock he can’t change one thing. Brock was the biggest draw in company history, more than Ronda Rousey, Georges St-Pierre, Chuck Liddell, and Anderson Silva. Lesnar still holds the record for headlining the biggest buyrate in UFC history. So no matter what kind of childish potshots Dana takes at Brock, the bottom line is that he’d take him back in a second.

As a matter of a fact, the UFC was negotiating with Brock up to the last minute a few months ago before Brock re-signed with WWE.

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CM Punk Talks WWE Politics, His Name in UFC, and More

August 12, 2015 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts, WWE | Pro Wrestling

CM Punk remains a hot topic in both the UFC and WWE worlds. RollingStone.com recently spent some time with Punk who offered some interesting reflections on his time in the WWE.

Punk continues to keep his name fresh in the press as he trains for a UFC debut that has yet to be scheduled. Plenty of skeptics (including myself) are starting to take the former WWE champ seriously as he continues to endure an indefinite training camp. Punk may not be any closer to the UFC octagon than he was a month ago but he remains one of the most quotable fighters on the roster.

RollingStone.com shadowed Punk for a couple of days and hit on a variety of topics with the former WWE star. Punk’s reflections on his past career as a WWE superstar remain fascinating as he continues to try and make sense of what appears to be a very crazy time in his life.

I think at some point in my wrestling career, I took myself way too seriously, and I took the wrestling business way too seriously,” he reflects. “It probably helped sour me on the whole process. It probably helped burn me out.

That is a very interesting quote as Punk has been accused by peers of taking himself too seriously going back to the independents. I am sure his obsession contributed to the burnout, yet at the same time you have to think he would never have been as successful without that desire.

For the longest time [in] what I did, the competition wasn’t that clean-cut,” he reflects on his WWE tenure. “It didn’t matter if you were the best. There’s slimy backstage politics, there’s always somebody trying to undercut you. To me, there’s something romantic about just you and another guy locked inside a cage and the better man wins. In that time and space, nothing else matters. I definitely think it can be f*cking scary, but I like embracing the things that scare me.

This is not surprising as Punk was highly outspoken about this on his infamous Art of Wrestling appearance as well as several times throughout his tenure as a WWE wrestler. It certainly doesn’t seem like he misses it does he?

Nobody calls Rampage ‘Quinton Jackson.’ Nobody calls Korean Zombie whatever the f*ck his real name is,” to inferring judgment and remarking, “I think there’s people who are negative for the sake of being negative and that’s just something they can pick on. Who gives a sh*t? Who cares?”

“I understand all the negativity, but I only have so many goes around the sun. I’m gonna capitalize on everything I can, and I’m gonna be the best at whatever I can.

Punk took some criticism early on by MMA fans for not dropping the CM Punk name. I always thought that was ridiculous as Phil Brooks is a lot less marketable than CM Punk in the UFC. At the end of the day, it’s a business and he is certainly not the first guy to use a moniker.

I’d highly recommend checking out the entire interview where he discusses more WWE as well as his road to the octagon in RollingStone.com.

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CM Punk Talks Hulk Hogan Controversy, WWE Return, and UFC Training

August 10, 2015 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts, WWE | Pro Wrestling

CM Punk is no stranger to controversy, especially when it comes to taking heat from the political correctness police. So it should come as no surprise to anyone that Punk was asked about Hulk Hogan’s recent controversy although the answer may be a bit of a shocker.

Punk is now a year and a half removed from the WWE, yet he will always be associated with the company and pro wrestling. Punk was recently asked about a couple of pro wrestling topics, including his reaction to fans waiting for him to return to wrestling and a guy that Punk has been outspoken of in the past, Hulk Hogan.

Punk was asked about the recent Hulk Hogan controversy and racist comments made on tape.

I don’t really have a comment on it. Like I said, though, stuff that you say can come back and bite you in the ass. Everybody gets what they deserve in the world. Hopefully he issued a sincere apology and we can all move on from it.
We all have said stupid things, and I don’t think you should judge somebody on what they said a long time ago. But some of the stuff is harsher than other things. It is what it is.

Most probably would have expected Punk to come out strongly against Hogan, especially after Punk ripped Hogan on Twitter for being a Chicago Blackhawks bandwagon jumper a few months ago. I wasn’t. Don’t forget that Punk was caught up in his own controversy regarding remarks just a few years ago. Punk took a ton of heat for homophobic remarks he made to a fan at a WWE event. Punk was never suspended and everyone moved on to the point where most people don’t even remember the incident today. Thus it shouldn’t surprise anyone that Punk’s reaction to this would be more or less to move on.

On whether it aggravates him when he is asked about a potential return to pro wrestling and the WWE.

Yes and no. It irks me a little bit because I think it’s the same people that are asking it. But at the same time you have to roll with the punches because it comes with the territory. It’s probably what I’m most known for, and there are fans out there that miss me in that venue. I am not one to draw in the past and I’m sailing on.

The “We want Punk” chants have died down quite a bit in recent months and I think fans have finally resolved themselves to accepting Punk is not coming back. Punk has never minced words and has made it clear from day one that he was done and wasn’t coming back. Yet pro wrestling fans are so conditioned to seeing guys quit or retire only to come back a short time later. I still wouldn’t close the door on Punk wrestling ever again. I highly doubt it will ever be in a WWE ring. However, for a guy that loved pro wrestling so much it wouldn’t shock me to see him pop up at an independent show sometime down the road and work an unadvertised match. Who would blame him? You have to give the guy credit for controlling his own destiny here whether he comes back or not.

Punk was also asked about his UFC training and how he felt he was progressing as a professional MMA fighter.

Well, I’m my own worst critic. I always want to be better than I am, and you can apply that to any aspect in my life. I want to be a better husband, better comic-book writer and better mixed martial artist. I am right where I need to be. I am keeping up with everybody, and that’s a tough task with all those “killers” in that gym.

Check out the entire interview, which includes thoughts on a recent text message Punk received from Daniel Bryan over at RedEyeChicago.com.

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The WWE Has A UFC-Sized Problem

August 05, 2015 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts, WWE | Pro Wrestling

While the WWE is preparing for another John Cena world title run now that the “Winner Take All” stipulation has been tossed out in a challenge by the current champion Seth Rollins, will the big “16” keep fans interested in the product on television?

Frankly, I do not know the answer to that question. The WWE has a serious issue right now as it is being “punked” (no pun intended) by poor booking and no leader to take over the band other than the man who had his nose smashed two weeks ago on Raw. The fact John Cena is still on top of the wrestling scene right now with talent on the roster that is not being properly used speaks volumes about where the WWE is. Also, the fact it does not have the dominant character right now like the UFC has in Ronda Rousey.

I’m sure the McMahon Family would give anything to have wrestling fans talk about its performers the way we are all buzzing about how Rousey is the most dominant athlete in any sport at the present moment. And that kind of momentum isn’t going away anytime soon. Like the McMahon’s, UFC President Dana White might have issues putting enough top-level talent on a fight card, but when you have the one person everyone is talking about both in fighting and entertainment circles, it masks a lot of problems that might exist. The card from last weekend was not the most stellar White has put together.

But this is a blog about the WWE and how it has gotten away from the big bang of a wrestler who is so dominant that everyone talks about them – regardless of whether they are a casual fan or a hardened old-school relic.

This is something not even John Cena can fix. Seth Rollins is good, but he is not good enough. Brock Lesnar is great, but he cannot carry the WWE on his back the way Rousey is carrying White’s baby. And if you want to talk about other roster talent, Roman Reigns, Dean Ambrose, Kevin Owens, Cesaro and others aren’t even close.

Where is the dominant squash match when you need it? I thought that was what Lesnar was supposed to do – to come in and beat the hell out of opponents like Cena, The Undertaker and Rollins and leave them all in his wake.

With Rousey, the match is the story as much the fighter. I liken it to Floyd Mayweather in his prime. How fast can Rousey or Mayweather win a fight? How quickly will there be a submission or a knockout? Let’s plunk down $59.99 to see a 34-second match.

Now that the company uses the WWE Network for pay-per-view shows and exclusive network viewing, this would be a good time to find a wrestler who can dominate much like Rousey is beating the competition today. At $9.99 (yes, I know I sound like a commercial and probably should get paid by the company for this cheap form of advertising), wouldn’t it make more sense to get fans to purchase the product at a lower buy rate for the sure enjoyment of seeing pure mayhem?

I’ll give the WWE credit for changing its guard a bit and creating longer, more intense matches. Old school wrestling meets new school talent. The creation of a dominant Divas division thanks to Charlotte, Paige, Becky Lynch and Sasha Banks has as much to do with the Rousey buzz and the fact WWE fans saw the dominant beauty in a WWE ring at WrestleMania. Fans can only hope at some point she makes the jump to the older product and helps it thrive.

When wrestlers like Big Show (The Giant) and Goldberg and Lesnar arrived in the WWE, they were as dominant as Big John Studd, King King Bundy and even a heel Hulk Hogan was at the beginning of his career. And fans ate it up. Somehow, wrestling got away from that, and in the process another product came along that showed it could be more dominant – even if it is only one athlete leading the charge.

The WWE is at an advantage when it comes to personalities because they are scripted and expected to be over-the-top performers. With Rousey, Conor McGregor and others, they are in-the-moment types of stars. The attitude is real, the everyday appeal isn’t rehearsed.

Rousey and McGregor are said to be part of a mega show at UFC 194 at Dallas’ AT&T Stadium set for Dec. 5. The WWE is still working on building its SummerSlam card that is now going to be four hours long. With Rousey’s win this past weekend and given the fact there may not be four hours of solid entertainment to keep fans interested, doesn’t it look like Rousey’s appeal to wrestling fans will again turn the tide even more and take away viewership from the McMahon stable? It’s just a thought, but if I were in Stamford right now, I’d be more than a little concerned.

Brock Lesnar and Undertaker is a great concept with the “big brawl” feel. But unless the Divas are taking ratings away from every other wrestler on the WWE roster and something unheard of happens in the match between Rollins and Cena, the WWE will still be playing the underlying role between the two companies.

That certainly isn’t good for the WWE, mainly because they don’t have the mega-star right now they can hitch their wagon to and build as a dominant force. Certainly not the way White and the UFC has done making Rousey the biggest and best athlete in sports today.

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Jon Jones: The Once and Maybe Future King

May 04, 2015 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts

To say that the last week has been life altering for Jon Jones would be an understatement. We all know the story by now, but the chain of events profoundly illustrates the domino effect of Jones’ downfall.

Jones surrendered to Albuquerque, New Mexico, police on Monday after a warrant was issued for his arrest on a felony charge of leaving the scene of an accident. Jones allegedly was involved in a hit-and-run accident on Sunday morning, which sent a pregnant woman to the hospital with a broken arm.

Jones fled the scene on foot, ran back to his vehicle, retrieved a handful of money, fled the scene again, and scaled a fence into a gated community where he made his escape. Police found a pipe containing marijuana in his vehicle.

After meeting with Jon Jones and his lawyer on Tuesday, Dana White announced that Jones has been stripped of the UFC light heavyweight title and has been suspended indefinitely by the promotion. Daniel Cormier will step in to fight Anthony Johnson for the vacant championship on May 23rd at UFC 187.

On Wednesday, Reebok announced they have dropped Jones as a sponsored athlete, rescinding his financial endorsement deal that had a heavy financial upside. Things didn’t get better on Thursday, as the fitness supplement company, MuscleTech also severed ties with the embattled star.

There are those who saw this coming a mile away due to Jones’ confirmed and unconfirmed, off the record behavior over the last four years. Anyone whose pockets are about to get lighter as a result of Jones’ recent transgressions looked the other way too often and said yes more than they should have.

UFC deserves a lot of credit for making a hard business decision that will cost them in the short term. The big question is though, will this work? Is this the wakeup call that Jones needs in order to see the error of his ways? Right now, it’s abundantly clear that Jones’ can’t handle the fame that comes with being a superstar athlete.

When strictly considering the realm of athletics, it’s a shame that morality outside of the cage dictates what happens within its confines. However, in 2015, the public is tired of celebrities getting an increased benefit of a very large doubt. The fact that Jones’(who is a millionaire) first instinct was to secure his cash paints an ugly portrait of his personality.

Jones was never beaten for the title and critics will look at the Cormier vs. Johnson winner as a hollow champion. I disagree with that notion. Yes, Cormier has already fallen to Jones, but he was already in training camp preparing for his previously scheduled June 6 bout with Ryan Bader.

If Daniel Cormier wins the title, he is the rightful and deserved heir because, up to this point, he has acted and conducted himself in a manner becoming of a world championship athlete. This is the opposite of Jones, who’s conducted prompted journalists, pundits, and fans to call for the removal of his title.

If Anthony Johnson wins the title, he also deserves full recognition from the sport and its contemporaries. Jones has never fought Johnson, and while “Bones” would be the favorite, the vicious KO power and overall skill that “Rumble” brings to the table gives him a better chance than most.

Plus, he’s come back what from appeared to be a never ending fall after being cut form the UFC three years ago, something everyone should hope that Jones can accomplish.

If I’m paying $59.99 to watch a premium combat sports product, I want the fighters involved to be as prepared as possible so we can see their best on fight night. Jones’ current legal troubles compounded by his alleged drug use suggests that training for a professional prize fight was the least of his concerns.

While it’s easy for anyone to sit on the outside and provide commentary on such matters, let’s try to look at things from the other side. Jon Jones is heralded as the best fighter on the planet and there is a lot of pressure that comes with that.

However, Jones has the added distinction of being pegged as quite possibly, the GOAT. We’re talking about some exclusive company with the likes of Michael Jordan, Muhammad Ali, Wayne Gretzky, and Babe Ruth. The pressure that comes with that is beyond compare and something LeBron James is familiar with.

There can be a plethora of punishments implemented to deter criminal behavior. At the end of the day, it all comes down to how badly Jon Jones wants things to change. Right now though, Jones needs to forget about the spotlight and just do him because the fighter can’t exist without the person being well.

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UFC Champ Jon Jones Wanted For Questioning in Hit and Run, UFC 187 Fight In Jeopardy

April 26, 2015 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts

The UFC light heavyweight champion appears to be in trouble with the law once again. Rumors have been confirmed that Jon Jones was in a car accident and is reportedly wanted for questioning in a Hit and Run in Albuquerque, NM.

This caps a day in which rumors ran rampant about Jon Jones and his involvement in UFC 187. Rumors began circulating early Sunday that something major happened with Jones and he was out of 187. Nothing was confirmed until a few Twitter leaks were confirmed by reporters and respected members of the media.

Alex Goldsmith, a reported for KRQE news in Albuquerque confirmed reports on Sunday night with a tweet.

“APD confirms MMA star Jon Bones Jones is wanted for questioning in connection with a hit and run.”

This is nothing compared to several other rumors that hit Twitter about the accident. None have been confirmed at this time thus it would be unfair to mention them. Yet the idea that Jones would allegedly run from a car accident tells you everything you need to know about the substance (no pun intended) of those rumors.

This is just another dark moment in what appears to be the downward spiral of the UFC champion. Jones tested positive for cocaine metabolites prior to his UFC 182 fight. Jones plead for forgiveness and entered rehab. Jones’ stint in rehab lasted a matter of one day according to several reports.

Jones was also arrested for a DUI back in September 2012. He plead guilty to DUI charges and paid a fine. His license was also suspended for six months.

The next 48 hours of UFC news will be very interesting to watch. Depending upon the circumstances of this incident, it is conceivable that Jones is out of UFC 187. That said, I don’t think the UFC will suspend him for a minute. Any discipline will come from the commission as the UFC tends to default to the commission in these types of situations. The fight is in jeopardy nonetheless.

More to come…

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Dana White Says No WWE Match For Ronda Rousey

April 26, 2015 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts, Videos, WWE | Pro Wrestling

While many observers are excited about the idea of Ronda Rousey wrestling at WrestleMania 32, there is one guy who isn’t. Unfortunately that happens to be the one guy who can make it happen and according to him, it’s time for the WWE to move to Plan B.

UFC champion Ronda Rousey made international headlines after she got into the ring at WrestleMania 31 and teamed up with the Rock. Most presumed it was a prelude to WrestleMania 32 and subsequential reports confirmed that the WWE are planning a Rousey vs. Stephanie McMahon match at Mania 32. Not so fast says Dana White.

I think the bigger story behind Rousey appearing at WrestleMania was the UFC giving her permission to do so. Dana White has always been adamant that he didn’t want his fighters getting physical on pro wrestling shows. White was responsible for shutting down a Brock Lesnar return to the WWE while Lesnar was still fighting for the UFC. So when Rousey got into the ring and got physical at Mania, many wondered if White had changed his mind on pro wrestling. Apparently he hasn’t.

White was asked about her appearance at Mania and the rumors of Rousey wrestling next year in Dallas, Texas. White immediately shot them down and said that Rousey’s WrestleMania appearance was a one and done.

“What she did on WrestleMania was awesome. It was awesome. It came off great, I loved it. Um, she’s a one and done.”

When asked if that meant she wouldn’t be involved in any more WWE matches he reaffirmed, “Nope.”

Houston we have a problem! The problem is that the biggest star in the UFC wants to return to the WWE. Rousey is a big pro wrestling fan and recently told Roddy Piper that the biggest problem she had with her Mania appearance is that she is hungry for more.

“I hit the ground running,” Rousey said. “The first I ever wrestled was at Wrestlemania with an attendance record at Levi’s Stadium. I had a problem when I left. There’s no way I can’t not go back in there again. There’s no way. After experiencing that, there’s nothing like it.

The UFC could have a big problem on its hands. Do the UFC hold the power here? They sure do. But you also don’t want the biggest star in your company unhappy. Rousey’s popularity is growing and so is her movie career. Rousey is an athlete at heart but she is also a business woman and she certainly has enough money to retire or sit out to support a dispute. With Anderson Silva and GSP seemingly lost, the UFC cannot afford to a rift between its MVP and the president.

My prediction is that Rousey will be at Mania but she won’t be wrestling. Quite frankly I don’t think it makes much sense, unless she is getting in the ring and beating someone in 30 seconds. I do predict that we will see Rousey in a WWE ring but it will come much later after retirement or a hostile standoff with the organization.

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Ronda Rousey Says She Wants More WWE

April 15, 2015 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts, WWE | Pro Wrestling

Ronda Rousey got a taste of the WWE and she wants more! The UFC champion told WWE legend Roddy Piper that she had so much fun at WrestleMania 31, there is no way she is not getting back into a WWE ring.

Rousey made her first in-ring WWE appearance at WrestleMania 31 in a highly publicized angle with the Rock, Triple H, and Stephanie McMahon. It had been widely circulated that the WWE have been interested in using Rousey for awhile, yet her UFC contract prevented her from showing up. With a blessing from Dana White, the WWE finally got their girl and it may be that blessing that winds up blowing up in White’s face.

Rousey was a guest on Roddy Piper’s PodcastOne.com podcast and talked extensively about her experience at WrestleMania 31. Rousey told Piper that the biggest problem is that she can’t wait to go back.

I hit the ground running,” Rousey said. “The first I ever wrestled was at Wrestlemania with an attendance record at Levi’s Stadium. I had a problem when I left. There’s no way I can’t not go back in there again. There’s no way. After experiencing that, there’s nothing like it.

The second I left I was already thinking, ‘How can I possibly go back?’ I didn’t even change [clothes] yet. I hadn’t even gotten out of my outfit yet.

Rousey is already rumored to be a part of the WrestleMania 32 main-event. Early speculation was that she’d either back up Rock vs. Triple H or tag with Rock against Hunter and Stephanie in a mixed-tag team match. Recent reports indicate that the WWE wants a Rousey vs. Stephanie singles match. Whatever the idea is, it would appear that Rousey is up for it and anything else.

Piper talked to Rousey about the angle and the benefits of working with someone like the Rock in that situation.

It’s a tricky thing having [The Rock]. He’s so good at putting people over. He holds the room so intensely, it’s hard to not be outshone by him,” said Rousey. “Triple H and The Rock could be one of the biggest rivalries of all-time. How can we make a situation where we ignore them? That’s a lot of pressure, to be captivating enough to ignore them.

Rousey also talked a bit about the spots in the angle with Stephanie and Triple H. Rousey told Piper that the hip-toss in particular did not go as planned.

That wasn’t even a throw I was planning. I made it up on the spot. I pulled it out of my ass. I don’t even know what that is,” said Rousey. “It was kind of awesome to see everything planned, and everything that doesn’t go according to plan.

She also told Piper that Stephanie wasn’t supposed to go down in their skirmish either. Rousey and Piper both agreed that the spontaneouity of it all made the moment even better.

I was nervous, in a way, when I knew [the appearance] was coming up,” Rousey said. “I was trying to look like I was cool but my heart and my chest were [pounding]. I was trying not to look obvious but I think I totally did.

Rousey and Piper also talked a bit about wrestling fans. Rousey literally stopped short of saying that wrestling fans were better than MMA fans. To put it in context, Rousey told Piper that wrestling fans understand that the WWE stars are just entertaining whereas MMA fans may take things she says to promote a fight too literally.

Sorry Dana but you have a problem on your hand. Your number one star is hooked and loved the rush of working in a stadium in front of 66,000+ people. Rousey did tell Piper that she won’t look ahead to future WWE dates until she fights Beth Correia on August 1. Rousey also told Piper that she had several movie commitments shortly thereafter.

I’d say there is a pretty good you’ll be seeing Rousey at WrestleMania 32 if she has her way. If she doesn’t, it could lead to an interesting showdown between White and his biggest UFC star.

Check out the entire podcast with Piper and Rousey. It’s a lot of fun and I can almost guarantee you that you’ll come out of it having a bigger appreciation for the UFC champ.

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CM Punk Calls WWE Fake, Says UFC Fighter Is An Easy Job

April 14, 2015 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts, WWE | Pro Wrestling

CM Punk is making some waves with some recent comments about his former trade. The former WWE champion who was once a big pro wrestling fan has now to come to despise it and is a lot less impressed with his former skill set than most of you are.

Punk did a lengthy Q&A with SI.com and whether it is the door officially closing on pro wrestling in his household due to his wife retiring, a million-dollar lawsuit, or pressure, he does not have any kind things to say about his pro wrestling career and the WWE. So for you wrestling fans if you think Punk is coming into the UFC and fighting for you, he is here to tell you that he isn’t.

What does it mean to be a good fake wrestler? That’s an identity crisis that I think I struggled with. It doesn’t matter if you’re the best, someone else picks who they want in the top spot.

It’s fake. People always get offended by that word. ‘No, we like to say it’s pre-determined.’ For whatever reason, people get angry at fake. Pre-determined eases the blow? It’s fake. At the end of the day it doesn’t really mean anything. So after a while, it was, ‘Let’s just really fight and see what happens.’ Now I get to.”

It’s interesting that Punk would go so far as to call it fake. It is what it is but for a guy that admittedly suffered countless concussions and injuries, you would think that fake would be a word that offended him. It certainly offends a lot of his former peers I can tell you that much. It’s not that anyone is trying to say it’s real, it is just that these guys and girls who do it for a living work hard and suffer through quite a lot to make it and sustain their spots. To demean it now that he and his wife are out is a little disappointing.

Backstage [in WWE] is so shark-infested and political. It’s almost comical. A lot of people are more interested in the backstage goings-on than what they see on television. A lot of ways it’s more fascinating. It’s a competition for sure.

You wonder, Did you really punch me in the face? You say it was an accident but I know you and I think you’re a prick and I’ve seen you do this to other people. Are you doing this to me? Did you kick me in the ribs as hard as you can? In MMA I know the other guy is going to try and kick me in the ribs as hard as he can. No, not maliciously. But I’ve been in the wrestling ring with plenty of guys where I’m wondering, Is he is trying hurt me? Is he mad because he is losing? I don’t have to deal with that bullsh*t any more. It’s a godsend.”

The guy is entitled to his opinion but he’s not real smart here. He is mocking the entire fan base that he is expected to bring with him to the UFC. He wasn’t signed to a UFC contract without one fight under his belt because they thought he’d be a champion. He was signed because he was expected to bring the pro wrestling fan base over with him. Coming out with so harshly against pro wrestling isn’t going to help.

Punk was also asked about other WWE stars getting into the UFC. “Half of them talk about it; none of them do it. They have their little comfortable safety net doing WWE stuff, I guess. I would much rather give it a shot than just talk about it.”

Punk not only angered WWE peers and fans but has probably made several of his UFC peers and many fans made as well when he called being a UFC fighter an “easy job.”

“[In WWE] you’re on the road pretty much every day of the year, at least when you’re in the position I was in. Fly into a town. Find a gym, work out. Go to the building. Stretch. Wrestle. Cool down. Drive to the next town. Wash, rinse, repeat.

Now I’m just training. What an easy job, right? It’s way better for me. I was burnt out on traveling, so over it. People think I’m crazy, living in Chicago and driving to Milwaukee every day to train. That’s the easiest thing in the world! Ninety minutes from my front door and I can be in my own bed every night? It’s a different lifestyle and it’s done me wonders. Amazing. I love it.

The real tough sons of bitches are the guys who train as hard as I do and then have to go to their nine-to-five job. I’m fortunate enough to do this as a full-time job. So I get to train two or three times a day. Things are going to be okay for me.”

I have to hand it to Punk. He alienated two fan bases in one interview. That is quite an accomplishment in a day’s work. While I am sure referring to being a UFC fighter as an “easy job” was not meant as a slight against his peers, it will certainly be taken as such.

There is also something quite sad in the way a guy like Punk who used to love pro wrestling has grown to absolutely hate it and everything about it.

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Calling The Shots: Gabriel Gonzaga vs. Mirko Cro Cop 2

April 08, 2015 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts

UFC will make its debut in Poland this Saturday with a Fight Pass card emanating from the Kraków Arena. The main event is a rematch from eight years ago as Mirko Cro Cop looks to avenge his most devastating loss against Gabriel Gonzaga. While this fight boasts no divisional relevance, the emotional storyline of the bout makes this an intriguing affair.

Mirko Cro Cop signed with the UFC in 2007 when the company was just starting to break into mainstream consciousness. Many believed he was the heavyweight attraction that would lead them to the promise land, and it seemed like a sure thing considering his résumé in PRIDE and winning that promotion’s Open Weight Grand Prix.

Cro Cop won his Octagon debut with ease. The consensus was that one more fight would seal the deal, leading to a monstrous pay-per-view showdown against the champion at the time, Randy Couture. Enter Gabriel Gonzaga, who was a step up in competition, but was still expected to fall victim to the Croatian.

Instead of accepting his role, Gabriel Gonzaga flipped the script with a shocking head kick that knocked out Cro Cop, prompting a violent fall to the canvas with his leg twisting upon impact. Gonzaga prevented what would have been one of the biggest money fights in MMA history and ended up challenging Couture instead before losing in the 4th round.

Cro Cop was a promoters dream. He possessed good takedown defense, coupled with fiercely accurate striking, which produced a plethora of highlight reels showing head kick knockouts. If you’re a professional wrestling fan, the way Cro Cop lost to Gonzaga would be equivalent to someone beating Steve Austin with his own signature maneuver, the Stone Cold Stunner.

It’s difficult to break down a rematch by referring to the previous encounter since it happened so long ago. The way Gonzaga won that fight was so spectacular, people forget that he dominated the entire bout. Cro Cop has never been the same since this fight as lackluster wins and devastating losses erased the Terminator-like aura he once had.

Gonzaga remained in the hunt after losing his title bid to Couture, but his last two losses to Stipe Miocic, and especially Matt Mitrone, have called into question whether or not his best days are behind him.

In a recent interview on The MMA Hour, Cro Cop said he believes he is a better fighter than Gonzaga and that “Things will be different this time.” This has sparked some excitement because this sounds like he’s motivated which in theory, means we could see the return of the Cro Cop that we used to know.

On fight night, Cro Cop’s plan of attack will not deviate from the norm. He is a striker at heart with some potency left in his attack. While he could catch Gonzaga, his physical decline will make him easier to takedown which plays heavily in the Brazilian’s favor.

If Gonzaga gets him down, he should be able to maintain top position and cause enough damage to call for a referee stoppage. While Gonzaga’s loss to Mitrone was scary and could be a sign of things to come, I don’t think he will play the same game this time around.

The Pick: Gabriel Gonzaga via TKO in the 3rd Round

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