Once upon a time, Conor McGregor looked like a perfect fit for the world of sports entertainment, thanks to his WWE-inspired image and press statements. But recently, he had become public enemy number one to wrestling fans and wrestlers alike, publicly disrespecting WWE’s current roster ahead of his UFC 202 fight against Nate Diaz. Now, with CM Punk having lost in just one round to Mickey Gall at UFC 203 last night, McGregor has nothing but respect for Punk, but still none at all, as it seems, for his former employers at WWE.

McGregor says CM Punk “had the balls” to make jump to UFC

Speaking to TMZ reporters after UFC 203, McGregor gave props to Punk (real name Phil Brooks) for transitioning from pro wrestling to mixed martial arts, even if he did get dominated in his debut fight against Gall. He praised Punk for “(getting) in there and (fighting),” which is something few people “have the balls” to do. This was a rather interesting take from McGregor, as he chose to commend the ex-pro wrestler instead of making an “I told you so” statement in the light of his loss.

CM Punk joined UFC in December 2014, almost a year after he had walked away acrimoniously from WWE due to problems with his creative direction. Despite not having any MMA training and being all of 36 years old at that time, his status as one of WWE’s top stars brought a lot of hype to his decision to sign with UFC. He had started training with respected MMA coach Duke Roufus in January 2015, but had suffered some injuries that had forced his UFC debut to be pushed back multiple times.

McGregor continues antagonizing WWE

Even if things had seemingly simmered down following McGregor’s original anti-WWE comments ahead of UFC 202, the 28-year-old Irishman couldn’t help taking aim once again at the company and its talent, calling its wrestlers “straight (expletives),” as opposed to Punk, who was courageous enough to move from pro wrestling to MMA. He did keep it short and sweet, though, telling TMZ that he thinks he’s “the greatest” and “pound-for-pound number one,” when the publication asked him if more WWE wrestlers should try their luck in UFC.

While it was just a small line, it reinforces the belief that McGregor has no love lost for professional wrestling in its present state, and enjoys getting a rise out of WWE’s Superstars. Still, it shouldn’t come as a surprise if he does show up on WWE programming one day. After all, he did admit previously that he respects WWE owner and chairman Vince McMahon and his son-in-law, multiple-time world champion and current company executive Triple H.

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