He declined to appear at ALL IN on September 1, and CM Punk is maintaining his stance that a pro wrestling return is off the cards in his first live interview since a one-sided loss at UFC 225 to Mike Jackson.
The former ‘straight-edge’ star curiously also mentions that despite his record of 0-2, he is not finished to trying to crack life as a pro MMA fighter.
Here are highlights from Punk’s conversation with ESPN’s Ariel Helwani today:
“There’s absolutely no shame in taking a chance in your life, and I took a big chance… I feel like even speaking about this now there’s a finality to it, but I don’t want anybody to jump to conclusions and start making headlines. I gotta talk to Duke [Roufus, his coach], I gotta get back to training and I plan on doing that as soon as I wrap on this movie [the Souska sisters’ remake of David Cronenberg’s Rabid]…
I think so [that he’s not done fighting]. I’m not ruling it out, but I’m not throwing my name in a hat right away. The door’s open. I’m taking opportunities as they come and if there’s a deadline it’s probably before the end of the year, but like I said, I’ve been talking to Duke and he’s like, ‘Just let me know when you’re coming back and we’ll talk about what’s in your future,’ and that’s my plan – to talk to him.
I’ve talked to UFC personnel about going out to Vegas and see the old Performance Institute. I have not spoken to Dana in a couple months.
I don’t think it’s UFC or bust. But I’m in a weird position. There’s other places out there, but it’s just like – would I go? Should I go? … I still look at it like the world’s my oyster and I’m fortunate enough to be able to kind of pick and choose. I’ll be the first to admit, you know me, I’m brutally honest – it probably doesn’t make a lot of sense for me to fight in the UFC again, but we’ll have to wait and see what happens.
No, I got no idea [if Dana and UFC plan to release him]. He said after the first fight that I probably shouldn’t fight again and then I fought again, so we’ll see.”
Punk seems down to keep trying his hand at MMA as long as he is allowed to, but what about pro wrestling?
“That’s like an escape hatch… There’s just nothing that interests me in wrestling.”