At UFC 203, which went down in September of 2016, former pro wrestling superstar CM Punk took his first steps into the MMA cage. While he showed off some impressive toughness in this MMA debut, the fight itself went pretty disastrously, as we he was mauled to a first-round submission loss by his opponent Mickey Gall. At UFC 225, which goes on June 9 in his native Chicago, Illinois, CM Punk will look to erase the memory of this disappointing MMA debut, as he takes on the dangerous Mike “The Truth” Jackson.
As this fight draws closer, we can expect plenty of mic time from both Punk and Jackson. When Jackson is speaking publicly, however, don’t expect him to call his foe by his pro wrestling monicker. No, he’ll be referring to CM Punk exclusively by the name is mother gave him: Phil Brooks.
Jackson explained why on a recent episode of The MMA Hour.
“His mama call him Phil, I’m gonna call him Phil,” Jackson told host Ariel Helwani (transcribed by Marc Raimondi for MMA Fighting).
“That’s his name — Phil Brooks,” Jackson added. “The whole CM Punk thing, I guess he’s trying to bring that gimmick over from the professional wrestling. Look, the CM Punk guy, he’s dying June 9 at UFC 225 in his hometown of Chicago.”
Given that Punk hails from Chicago, Jackson knows he’ll probably be dealing with a hostile crowd at UFC 225. Apparently, however, this is not too much of a concern for him.
“I’m expecting a sort of hostile crowd,” Jackson said. “But again, those people aren’t gonna be in the cage with Phil. They can boo me all they want to. Actually, I enjoy the boos.”
“The main objective here is to build the Mike ‘The Truth’ entertainment brand,” he added. “That’s what we’re here about. So, although I know I’m gonna be walking out to a lot of boos, eventually I want to turn those fans over and bring them to ‘The Truth’ side.”
Who do you think will come out on top when the cage door closes on Mike Jackson and CM Punk — sorry, Phil Brooks — at UFC 225?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 4/30/2018.