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UFC 203 ‘CM Punk vs. Mickey Gall’ conference call (audio)



For all intents and purposes, CM Punk versus Mickey Gall is the main event of UFC 203. There was no UFC 203 media conference call for Stipe Miocic and Alistair Overeem today ahead of their heavyweight title bout. However, there was one for two men with two combined pro fights between them.

UFC welterweights CM Punk (0-0) Mickey Gall (2-0) took some time out of their busy schedules to answer questions from members of the MMA media just hours ago. Here are some quote pulls from this highly informative event:

Mickey Gall: “He’s been performing in front of large groups of people, I’ve been fighting in front of large groups of people…it’s just a different thing. It’s not performing, it’s a real fight. We’re gonna be standing across from each other within a rule set trying to kill each other. It’s a different thing – something that I believe I have more experience in.”

Gall on watching ‘The Evolution of Punk’ documentary: “It’s a cool show. Rory [Karpf] does a good job. It’s cool man. Punk and his wife seem like likeable people. I’m not particularly impressed, just different things, the way he moves. I’m sure he’s improved tremendously since that footage but I know when he gets in the fight; when we get into the shit, I think those bad habits are gonna come out and I’m gonna be able to expose those.”

CM Punk: “I knew what I was getting into. I think the level of competition in my gym would be surprising to most people. It’s about proving something inside the octagon.”

Damon Martin asks Punk about his weight cut. Punk answers in a sarcastic tone: “It’s terrible. I’m like above 200 pounds right now and it’s not looking good.”

Gall responds: “Can I say that’s fine by me. Punk, you’re totally welcome to come in heavy man. I’d love a little bit of whatever you’re making.”

Punk: “Ya, it’d be the most money you’ve ever made in your entire life and if you think I’m giving you any of my purse you’re fucking crazy.”

Gall: “Ya, I figured.”

Punk on how he feels after almost 2 years of training exclusively for MMA: “I’m not looking at who number two is gonna be. I’m just focused on this one. But to say this is a one and done – I think that’s premature. But, I’m also old and wise enough to know that you never say never. I mean, who knows what’s gonna happen. But I’m for sure in this for the long haul. I have a decent number size of fights on my contract and I’m looking to fulfill and I’m looking to have fun doing it.”

Punk is asked to “put on a Conor McGregor hat” and make a prediction on the outcome of his fight with Gall: I see my hand getting raised. I’m not sure if Conor’s hat would fit my head. I don’t know if he has a large head or a small one. I definitely see myself winning. If I had to pick I’d say TKO.”

Gall on if this is a one-off: “My contract is longer than just this fight. I never wanna go back to the regional scene. I’m in the UFC now and I’m here to stay.”

Punk on his head coach, Duke Roufus: “Duke’s the head coach at RoufusSport, in my opinion the best MMA gym in possibly the world, but then again I’m supposed to say that, but I don’t have to talk it up. Pretty much, the track record speaks for itself.”

Gall on this fight getting the build up it deserves: “Bottom line is, we’re gonna fight… we’re not gonna put on and pretend to hate each other. There is an appropriate amount of build up. I think people are excited and I know we both are.”

Punk on the difference between the beginning of his PW career and his MMA career: “It’s a little bit apples and oranges comparing the two. I was 26 and always told that I’d never make it and then you make it and it’s harder to stay there then it is to make it and with this you get in there and you gotta win. It’s nobody else’s decision. Nobody’s gonna take something you work for away from because you wear the wrong pair of shoes on a flight or some whacky bully bullshit like that…it’s a little bit different from that respect but I imagine the hunger’s the same.”

Punk on his teammate Anthony Pettis: “He leads by example. He’s a guy who lost 3 hard fights in a row. With anybody else you’d expect he’d probably get cut maybe if he lost his fourth one but he went to a lower weight division so ultimately that’s a harder weight cut and he fought the best jiu-jitsu guy in that weight division so that’s really eye-opening. It sounds corny but it’s not about how many times you fall, it’s about getting back and perseverance.”

Gall: “I’ve matured over the past six months. When I went into my last fight I was a kid. I’m really proud of what I did in the past six months. I’ve gotten better in every aspect and i think I’d beat the crap out of the version of myself that won in February now.”

Punk on Conor McGregor’s recent comments about WWE: “I don’t care. It’s a hard thing to comment on because the amount of people who responded to him made me think they were told to respond to him. He’s the biggest name in sports in the moment so there’s always gray areas when you involve that whole scene…. A lot of feelings were hurt so I thought that was a little strange. You gotta leave the emotion out of it, these guys still don’t know.”

What does Punk hope anyone watching in the arena or from home will take from this: “Do what you want in life. Find something you love to do and do it for a living. Don’t let people tell you can’t do something. Life’s too fucking short to not enjoy it, to not have fun everyday, to not do what it is that you want.”

Punk on visualization: “That’s something my buddy Duncan Keith from the Blackhawks is a firm believer in… We exchange training tips and recovery tips. He’s a really big believer in visualization. I try to take a little bit of time out of every day before I go into the gym. I’m sure I’ll do it on fight night too; visualize and go through in my head where I see things going and putting yourself in bad positions and keeping calm and getting out of them and marching forward to win the fight.”

Punk: “If I step foot into the octagon, I’ve already won… at the end of the day I don’t wanna walk in there and lose. I wanna show up. I wanna beat Mickey. I don’t really give a shit how I do it. A win’s a win. I’m not looking to impress one of my coaches more. I’m not looking to knock him out. It’s like an all-encompassing thing. I think at the root, that’s why I love MMA so much. It’s so many disciplines, it’s so many different things, there’s so many variables, everything thing has to line up on that one perfect day and I’m looking to do that on the 10th.”

Punk: “A big part of me wasn’t gonna resign [with WWE] in 2011 and this is what I would’ve done and who’s to say I would’ve been hotshotted to the UFC…If MMA was around in the form it is in when I was 14-15, I definitely think I would’ve taken a different path. And there’s a lot of guys in the pro wrestling industry that say that and I ultimately didn’t wanna be one of those guys who just asked about it – I wanted to do it.”

Dave Meltzer asks Punk what year he decided that he’d eventually compete in MMA: “Probably 2009.”

Meltzer asks Punk about the news of UFC matchmaker Joe Silva retiring at the end of the year: ” I talk to Joe all the time. I think Joe was great. I think that’s one of many big changes that are probably coming since the UFC got bought. I’m sad to see Joe go. But he’s still there now so let’s enjoy him while we can.”

Gall on what’s next: “I want everybody man. My goal is to be UFC champion. Whoever’s in the way, I plan on moving up in the rankings and getting that belt. I might have a name on the microphone for after – we’ll see.”

A “journalist” who apparently didn’t understand Punk’s sarcasm from earlier asks him how he plans on losing 30 lbs before September 10th. Punk answers, “Amputation.”

Punk on Chael Sonnen: “We still talk. Normally him trying to get me to do his podcast and me trying to explain to him I can’t do podcasts anymore.

“He was one of the guys who told me it’s mental – you’ll have no problem with the physical stuff…it’s mental.”

Punk on getting three wins in one night: “I win when I walk in there. I win when I win. I win when I get to eat a pizza afterwards.”

Punk talks WWE vs. UFC stress: “Carrying an entire company on your shoulders, for lack of a better description, after a while it sucks. So, with this, this is just more, be relaxed, focus on yourself. I’m not worried about what everybody else is doing. I’m not worried about PPV numbers, buyrates, and ratings, and merchandise sales, I focus on one thing and one thing only and that’s myself.”

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