There have been reports that CM Punk is working with UFC's Dana White on a return to the Octagon, and his coach Duke Roufus has now given fans a possible timetable for his return.
CM Punk lost in rather devasting fashion to Micky Gall at UFC 203, but Punk made it clear after the match that he wasn't planning on going anywhere, and would return. Roufus would certainly like to see that happen, and he spoke to MMAFighting about Punk's resilience and how he isn't letting the loss derail him.
"It’s great, personalities drive this sport. He’s going to get better. Obviously, he didn’t perform the way we wanted to perform. We had some things he was doing really well with, he just didn’t happen. It’s just going to take time. But the great thing is he has an incredible attitude, and he’s very thankful for the opportunities. He’s getting better, he’s back in training and right after this fight I’ll picking up big time with him."
Roufus is currently in Toronto for UFC 206, where he is accompanying Anthony Pettis in his fight against Max Holloway. After he wraps that up and the Sergio Pettis fight early next year, he hopes to devote more focused time on Punk. As for returning to UFC, Roufus is quite optimistic about Punk returning for a second fight, and much sooner than expected.
"Yeah, definitely, I believe he and Dana are talking," he said. "I just talked to Punk on Monday before that, and things are looking hopeful. I can’t say yes or no, but they’re looking hopeful. We’re going to see. Dana’s always got a good recipe of what he’s going to create, and what’s best for the sport, and what’s best for Punk and everyone else." As for that timetable, Roufus says it's looking like "Maybe four or five months."
If Punk does return to UFC for another fight, which is looking quite likely, he'll definitely need to show considerable improvement to qualify for a third fight, otherwise, he'll need to seek out another organization to fight under. Of course, he could always return to the WWE, but it seems awfully soon for that to happen.