Former WWE champion CM Punk will not be competing later this summer against Mickey Gall after all.
Punk, real name Phil Brooks, squared off with Gall over the weekend to promote their planned bout, but back surgery will keep him sidelined for an extended period of time.
“My back has always bugged me. Figured it was wrestling (expletive). Turns out it was,” Punk told MMAFighting.com. “It got bad enough to the point where I couldn’t do anything the week I went to train with the New Jersey Devils last month.
“One day I could manage, the next day I couldn’t. I’ve been in agony for almost a month. Chiropractor, acupuncture, massage, cryotherapy. Nothing worked.”
Punk has a herniated disc and is scheduled to undergo surgery on Wednesday. He stated that the surgery is similar to the one recently performed on former UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez, meaning he will be able to train once again in 4-to-6 weeks.
“This is just a bump in the road,” Punk said. “I’m positive about this.”
Gall, who earned his shot at Punk by beating Mike Jackson, was signed by the UFC after impressing in front of UFC president Dana White.