Seventeen months after signing with the UFC, former WWE superstar Phil “CM Punk” Brooks (pictured) will finally make his MMA debut.
Brooks will battle Mickey Gall at UFC 203. The September 10 event goes down inside Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio.
The welterweights were initially slated to meet at UFC 199 after Gall secured himself the coveted bout against Brooks by quickly submitting Mike Jackson in his UFC debut this past February.
UFC president Dana White found Gall on his premiere episode of “Looking For A Fight.” After finishing off his first opponent with a rear-naked choke in his MMA debut, Gall knew White was sitting in the stands and requested to welcome Brooks to MMA.
White quickly signed Gall and promptly let him know the significance of his first fight in the big leagues.
After signing Brooks back in December 2014, White predicted he wouldn’t make his MMA debut until six months after joining Team Roufusport. Brooks’ debut has been delayed because he (depending upon who you ask) wasn’t improving at the pace UFC officials wanted, the UFC wasn’t able to locate the appropriate opponent, injuries, etc.
Then came last October’s shoulder injury, which was followed by a back injury just four days after his initial fight against Gall was confirmed.
Due to these delays, Brooks’ entry into MMA has lost a lot of momentum. However, that doesn’t mean people won’t still be tuning in out of curiosity.
UFC 203 will be headlined by a heavyweight shootout between champion Stipe Miocic and Alistair Overeem. Fellow heavyweights Faricio Werdum and Ben Rothwell serve as the co-main event.
Here is the show’s current lineup:
Phil “CM Punk” Brooks vs. Mickey Gall
Ben Rothwell vs. Fabricio Werdum
Alistair Overeem vs. Stipe Miocic (UFC heavyweight champion)