Since Phil “CM Punk” Brooks signed with the UFC, several fighters have criticized the signing and have offered to fight the former WWE star. Well, Brown recently appeared on the “Great MMA Debate” podcast, and the punishing welterweight took the anti-Punk signing rhetoric up a notch. Here is some of what Brown had to say on the matter (quotes via MMA Fighting.com):
“I thought the sport, the UFC, itself, was beyond that now,” Brown said. “Bellator doing this, I could understand. I could see other organizations doing it. The UFC, I just didn’t expect it.”
“I don’t have a problem with the UFC doing it,” Brown added, after he reportedly conceded that the signing will draw fans to UFC cards. “What I have a problem with is CM Punk being dumb enough to think he can do it. If he wants to come fight a real man I’ll be standing there. I’ll fight Tarec Saffiedine on [Feb. 14] and I’m the main event, everyone will be gone. I’ll fight him right after Tarec if he wants.”
How about that? Brown’s point regarding Bellator is an interesting one, as he’s right, in that perhaps the signing wouldn’t have been so polarizing, if Brooks had been picked up by a UFC competitor, rather than the world’s biggest MMA organization.
But, one could argue, this is precisely why the UFC did bring Punk on board. Bellator has been pulling strong ratings for SPIKE, and if Brooks had signed with the Viacom owned promotion, then that many more fans would start realizing there’s more to MMA than just the UFC.
CM Punk aside, if you don’t have Brown-Saffiedine down on your ‘must see’ list, you should change that now (or when you get some spare time…). Saffiedine may have been taken out by Rory MacDonald last time out, but his striking pedigree should make for an outstanding fight, when he battles “The Immortal”, February 14th.
That card will be hosted by the 1ST Bank Center in Broomfield, Colorado.