C.M. Punk UFC Documentary
“Evolution of Punk: The Ground Up”
Week 2 – August 22, 2016
Aired on Fox Sports 1
Monday night while Raw was airing on USA Network, Fox Sports 1 aired the second part of a half-hour documentary on C.M. Punk’s journey from WWE to UFC. The series is to promote Punk’s first pro fight at UFC 203 on September 10 in Cleveland.
This week’s episode opened with C.M. Punk back on the road driving from Chicago to Milwaukee for training at Roufusport. Punk said to be successful in anything, you have to be a little bit crazy.
Now in April 2015, Punk was ready for his second sparring session. Punk got some advice from his striking coach while A.J. Lee nervously prepared to watch Punk’s fight. Punk talked to rocker Lars that she gets nervous watching him fight, and she used to get nervous watching him wrestle.
Punk was fighting Craig Eckelberg again. They focused on A.J. watching as Punk tried to improve his reactions to Eckelberg’s offense. Punk ended up on his back punishment. He said in a voice-over that he has to learn from these experienced MMA fighters. Punk ended up getting some applause for countering offense that he fell victim to last time.
Punk left the cage and knocked fists with Lars and A.J., who breathed a sight of relief that it was over. In the locker room, Punk got his evaluation from Duke Roufus about what he needs to work on to get closer to fight-ready.
In Milwaukee, Punk and A.J. sat down for dinner with Lars to eat some steaks. Punk likes his steak extremely rare. Punk said he’s treating the sparring session like he really fought and won, so he’s chowing down. A.J. said it was the most terrifying thing ever. Punk said he’s obsessed with getting better.
Back on the road, Punk said he feels like he’s not making enough strides, but that’s the pressure he puts on himself. Punk said nothing is ever really good enough for him.
Now in May 2015, Punk was working on losing weight at his current weight of 196 pounds. Punk got a nutrition and weight assessment to drop 20 pounds by cutting body fat. The nutritionist suggested a plan to get down to 180 pounds by dropping a pound or two per week. Punk wanted quicker results.
Punk was shown doing various fitness workouts trying to improve his athleticism.
Back in Chicago, Punk was working out at his house in July 2015. Punk and A.J. packed up some belongings to relocate to Milwaukee to be closer to training. They packed up the moving fan and arrived at Punk’s apartment in Wisconsin. And, the truck got stuck in the parking garage because of a low-hanging pipe from the roof. Punk and A.J. got in the back of the truck trying to add weight to push the truck down so it could get free.
Punk and A.J. entered their apartment with their dog to evaluate the set-up. And, the dog peed all down the hallway to mark its territory.
Suddenly, UFC president Dana White called Punk to discuss his move to Milwaukee. He said he’s keeping his home in Chicago, but just needed to be closer to the training facility to not add the stress of a drive on top of the training. Punk said he felt like he was back in wrestling putting miles on his bodies sitting in a car.
White said everyone he’s talked to at Roufus has praised him for taking his lumps in the beginning and getting his training going. Punk said he’s still taking his lumps. White said everyone was talking crap about Punk making this transition in the beginning, but now he’s proven that he’s here to stay. They agreed to meet up soon.
Back to Punk and A.J. horsing around in their apartment trying to settle into a new set-up for the next stage of training.
It’s still July 2015 for Punk trying to work on his mentality. Punk was trying to learn a killer instinct punching through his opponent. Included was Punk needing to learn his proper stance. Roufus got excited as Punk picked up more of the proper technique.
Time for another sparring session. The third session in August 2015 was against a young fighter, Israel Lozano. Punk seemed more confident and aggressive. He talked to his coaches that he doesn’t trust his punches. Punk showed more aggression after talking to his coaches, then finished strong. Roufus said Punk still needs to work on certain things, but he didn’t run away from the fight.
Punk was shown sweeping up the floor after his sparring session. Punk said it felt like his best day in training. He said he started to feel good about himself … and then he got hurt. Punk was shown with an icebag on his shoulder.
On the Next Episode … Punk has shoulder surgery, and the rehab continues.