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CM Punk ‘confident’ he’ll fight in the UFC again

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Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

CM Punk doesn't seem to be going anywhere.

The pro-wrestling-star-turned-MMA-fighter told Ariel Helwani on Monday's edition of The MMA Hour that he believes it is likely that he'll get another shot in the UFC. Punk lost his debut by first-round submission to Mickey Gall at UFC 203 in September.

Punk said he and UFC president Dana White have been in discussions about a possible next move. The former WWE champion, whose real name is Phil Brooks, said he is hoping to return as early as January or February.

"I don't want to speak for him, but I think if he wants to kill it, he would have killed it right then," Punk said of his second fight being in the UFC. ... "Until anything is official, I don't want to say either way what he's thinking or what he's thinking. But yeah, I'm pretty confident that it'll be in the UFC."

Punk, 38, said White had an "idea" about what the UFC might do next with Punk, but would not divulge what that idea was. He did say he told White that he would definitely fight again — whether it's for the UFC or another promotion. Punk added that he would understand if the UFC wanted to cut him.

Previously, White said Punk would "probably" not compete in the UFC again.

"I told him I want to fight again," Punk said. "We're back at it. We're back to the drawing board. So, it's up to him. He floated me an idea and we're kind of going back and forth on it right now."

Punk said an announcement could happen in the next few weeks, but there is no official timetable or anything yet on paper.

After falling to Gall in a lopsided loss, Punk said he got right back to training in his hometown of Chicago two days later. After enjoying the Cubs' run to the World Series and their first championship since 1908, Punk said he moved part-time back to Milwaukee to train at Roufusport.

"I felt like I was in the best shape of my life still, so I just kept after it," he said. "I think that's the best thing you can do after you lose."

Punk signed with the UFC in December 2014, about 11 months after he departed WWE on bad terms. He was officially let go from the pro-wrestling organization in early summer of 2014 and is currently being sued by the WWE doctor for defamation for statements Punk made on a podcast.

In early 2015, Punk began training at Roufusport and, after overcoming a number of injuries, he made his UFC debut about a year and a half later. He said after the loss he was upset by simply losing, not that his UFC run could have been over quickly. Punk said he would be fighting right now even if it was not in the UFC.

"The UFC just made me a business offer," said Punk, who made $500,000 in disclosed pay at UFC 203. "I wasn't emotional, because I saw that something was over. I was just bummed that I lost."

Punk said he has not thought much about who is next opponent will be. But a second fight will happen, Punk said. Even if it isn't in the UFC. Punk said he told White as much.

"This is what I do now," Punk said he told the UFC boss. "This is what I'm going to do now. If i can do it for you, awesome. If not, I'll still bug you for tickets to your show."