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CM Punk: ‘I’m not gonna be the same guy you saw on a television show’ at UFC 203

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Videos are circulating online from the Fox Sports 1 documentary series of CM Punk's MMA training journey. Most of them are accompanied by jokes, memes or criticism of his technique.

But don't believe everything you see on the Internet, Punk said Thursday during a UFC 203 media conference call. The fledgling UFC fighter and former WWE star said that stuff was filmed more than a year ago and he's not the same fighter now as he was then.

"It was a correct depiction of where I was at when it was shot," Punk said. "Pre-back surgery, walking around with a herniated disc, 15 percent power in my left leg."

Punk, 37, will meet Mickey Gall in his MMA debut at UFC 203 on Sept. 10 in Cleveland. Most people know the story by now. Punk, whose real name is Phil Brooks, is a former WWE champion and huge star in pro wrestling. He has no significant martial arts or fighting background, but has always wanted to challenge himself in MMA and the UFC signed him in December 2014.

Since then, Punk has been hard at work training at Roufusport with the likes of Anthony Pettis and Tyron Woodley in Milwaukee. He's had ups and downs, mostly with injuries (including the aforementioned back surgery), but said he'll be ready to go next week for the fight with Gall.

Documentary cameras have been following him around from the start of his training and a reality show is currently airing on FS1. That's where the videos that have been mocked stem from.

"I wouldn't say it's unfair," Punk said. "Life is unfair. But you can't listen to what somebody on the Internet is saying about you, you know? You dig hard enough you'll find negative stuff about everybody. I'm a positive guy. I know what I'm good at. I know what I'm gonna be good at. What I did a year and a half ago doesn't matter to me."

Punk said he's expecting to beat Gall and does not believe this will be "one and done" in MMA. He said he plans on fulfilling the length of his contract with the UFC and "having fun" doing it.

The guy from the reality show, the one who just started training in mixed martial arts, is not the same guy who will show up at UFC 203, he said.

"It would be like me watching one of Mickey's fights and expecting to fight that guy," Punk said. "Mickey trains his ass off and he trains with a good team. He's not gonna be the same guy he was in his last fight, just like I'm not gonna be the same guy you saw on a television show."

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