CLEVELAND -- C.M. Punk’s debut in the UFC was a fast one.
Without landing a significant strike, Punk suffered a submission loss to Mickey Gall via a rear-naked chokehold at the 2:45 mark of the first round in a welterweight fight at UFC 203 inside Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland.
“I will be back,” Punk said in his post-fight interview with UFC commentator Joe Rogan. “There’s no shame in getting knocked down. The true failure in life is not trying.”
At the outset, Punk, who was making his not only his UFC but mixed martial arts debut, charged toward the center of The Octagon, Gall shot in and was successful with a takedown. After utilizing a double-leg takedown, Gall pushed Punk against the cage fence and dropped his opponent to the mat.
Punk landed all six of his shots in the clinch, but Gall threw sharp elbows early in the first round that opened up his opponent. Gall continued to pepper Punk with punches and elbows, landing 26 of his 39 attempts in side control or full guard.
Punk attempted to roll out of the blows, but gave up his back, which left him vulnerable for the rear-naked choke.