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CM Punk officially retires from MMA upon return to professional wrestling

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UFC officials confirmed the news on Tuesday.

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CM Punk during the UFC 225 weigh-ins.
CM Punk during the UFC 225 weigh-ins.
Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

In an unsurprising turn of events, two-time UFC welterweight competitor CM Punk has made his MMA retirement official. UFC officials confirmed the news with MMA Fighting on Tuesday.

The 42-year-old Punk (Phil Brooks in real life) hasn’t set foot inside the UFC Octagon since June 2018. He nonetheless remained in the USADA testing pool, a requirement for all active fighters in the roster. Per MMA Fighting, Punk underwent testing a total of six times in 2020 alone.

But in 2021, Punk had not been tested at all. He had apparently notified UFC officials about his retirement from MMA as he prepared for his return to pro wrestling.

Last week, Brooks made a surprise appearance on AEW Dynamite, much to the delight of the fans in attendance.

Punk made his UFC debut in 2016 at UFC 203 against Mickey Gall and lost via first-round submission. He tried to bounce back two years later at UFC 225 against Mike Jackson, but once again fell short with a unanimous decision loss. The result, however, was overturned to a No Contest after Jackson tested positive for cannabis.

Punk’s pro wrestling return happens this weekend at AEW All Out where he faces Darby Allin.