He joined Brock Lesnar as the only pro wrestlers to make the transition from the WWE to the UFC.
Unfortunately for Punk, he did not enjoy the same success in his first fight as Lesnar did in his, losing to Gall by submission at 2:45 in the first round.
His willingness to step into the Octagon earned Punk the respect of many in and around the sport, as well as some of Punk's former pro wrestling colleagues, and plenty of observers reacted on social media when the fight was over.
! Respect Punks courage to put himself out there but there's a reason for armatures , Pros , ect . . gotta go thru the process like every1— Eddie Alvarez (@Ealvarezfight) September 11, 2016
CM Punk got a lot of heart for stepping in there #UFC203— Cub Swanson (@CubSwanson) September 11, 2016
No matter what anyone says @CMPunk got in there and went for it. He took some shots and fought a choke to the best of his ability. Respect.— Andre Fili (@TouchyFili) September 11, 2016
👏👏👏👏... Good after fight speech @CMPunk! 👊 I'm a fan!— Rashad Evans (@SugaRashadEvans) September 11, 2016
Stand up, dust off, onto the next one. Love you good brother.— S.J. (@SamoaJoe) September 11, 2016
CM Punk should absolutely be respected. What a cool guy! Mickey Gall is a tough kid and he's smart. Excellent post fight speeches! #UFC203— Kenny Florian (@kennyflorian) September 11, 2016