CM Punk To Make UFC Debut Tonight, Chris Benoit Biopic Gets Director, Big UFC Fight Off, Two Title Changes At Backlash?

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UFC 203

- Today is the day for CM Punk as nearly two years after signing a contract to fight for UFC he will step in the octagon for the first time tonight against Mickey Gall at UFC 203 from the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. The event will be headlined by Stipe Miocic defending the UFC Heavyweight Championship against Alistair Overeem but Punk will likely garner the most attention. Punk is as controversial and divisive of a figure as there has ever been. When he left WWE after Royal Rumble in 2014, he cut ties with a number of his connections within the wrestling business. He’s remained in only casual contact with most guys in WWE and while he’s still respected by some, he has burned some bridges along the way. Punk’s reaction to that is one of complete apathy and he’s focused on his new venture and feels ready and prepared for tonight’s fight. He’s someone that thrives on people doubting him and will look to that to help motivate him for his first encounter in UFC’s octagon. We’ll be watching with a close eye and providing complete live coverage here at WrestlingNewsWorld.com. Below are other fights on the card:

Main Card (Airing of PPV at 10 PM ET):

* Stipe Miocic vs. Alistair Overeem
* Fabricio Werdum vs. Travis Browne
* CM Punk vs. Mickey Gall
* Urijah Faber vs. Jimmie Rivera
* Jessica Andrade vs. Joanne Calderwood

Preliminary Card (Airing on Fox Sports 1 at 8 PM ET):

* Jessica Eye vs. Bethe Correia
* Nik Lentz vs. Michael McBride
* Caio Magalhaes vs. Brad Tavares
* Drew Dober vs. Jason Gonzalez

Preliminary Card (Airing on UFC Fight Pass at 7:30 PM ET):

* Yancy Medeiros vs. Sean Spencer

- We have the latest on Paige’s status with WWE at this link in our Members content and here at WNW HD. There’s no reason for the confusion as we have complete details on what is going on after Alberto Del Rio was officially released yesterday, what Paige did that stopped talks between the two sides and more. If you’re not yet a Premium Member, what are you waiting for? WNW HD is now open, it’s a complete game changer and it’s exclusive to WNW Premium Members. CLICK HERE to signup now and enter the coupon code GOHD for 10% OFF at checkout.

- The biopic based on the book Ring of Hell: The Story of Chris Benoit & the Fall of the Pro Wrestling Industry by Matthew Randazzo V has found a director in German helmer Lexi Alexander. The film, called Crossface, will feature Alex A. Ginzburg and Tony Lee of Let It Play as producers and Ram Getz and Matthew Randazzo V as executive producers. For those that haven’t read the book, understand there is a narrative attached to this with an agenda. I’m not saying it’s one that is entirely inaccurate but the author, Matthew Randazzo V, has an anti-Vince McMahon/professional wrestling mindset that is evident throughout. This is not some objective look at the life and times of Chris Benoit, ending in a horrific double murder suicide. This is a story about placing the blame squarely on the shoulders of Vince McMahon for what happened in the finals days of the life of Chris Benoit. While one may or may not agree with that, readers should be aware of the underlying agenda before investing their time, money and resources into this. While it’s been nearly a decade since I’ve read Ring of Hell, I remember growing extremely frustrated with its lack of objectivity. Variety has more on the film and its director at this link.

- Ronda Rousey was at last night’s AIW last night in Cleveland, OH. This show featured Dan Severn, Colt Cabana and Rousey’s friend Shayna Baszler. You can view a photo of Rhonda in attendance at this link.

- TMZ is reporting that Robbie Lawler has pulled out of his scheduled fight against Donald "Cowboy" Cerrone at UFC 205 in New York City just days after it was announced. According to their report, it’s unclear why Lalwer backed out and UFC will look for a new opponent for Corrone at the UFC’s first show at Madison Square Garden which will take place on November 12, 2016. Lawler was defeated by Tyron Woodley via knockout in the first round at UFC 201 last July.

- In addition to AJ Styles being favored to beat Dean Ambrose for the WWE Championship at tomorrow night’s Backlash pay-per-view, Dolph Ziggler is now favored to beat The Miz for the WWE Intercontinental Championship. We should have a much clearer picture about who is going to win for sure in the hours prior to the show but this is something we’ll follow as the weekend progresses. Remember, live Backlash coverage is tomorrow night at 8 PM ET here at WrestlingNewsWorld.com.

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