o a prominent role as a freshman. He rounds out the touted trio that Alford landed, all of whom are from Southe | Forum

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CLEVELAND -- CM Punk lost Saturday night at UFC 203, but Phil Brooks walked out of the Quicken Loans Arena as the real winner. Cheap Real Madrid Jerseys .Brooks MMA debut, which came nearly two years after he announced he had signed with the UFC on Dec. 6, 2014, ended with a rear-naked chokehold at 2:14 of the first round at the hands of 24-year-old Mickey Gall, who is now 3-0 in his young MMA career.The result, however, was nothing more than a footnote to what should be viewed as an inspirational example for anyone unhappy with where they are in life and unsure if its too late to rewrite their story.Brooks, who has fought under the name CM Punk since he broke into professional wrestling in the 1990s, will turn 38 next month. No one gave him much of a chance to win his first MMA fight, which didnt take place in some nondescript gymnasium as many debuts do, but in front of a sellout crowd of around 20,000 fans on a UFC pay-per-view he co-headlined.The mere fact Brooks was able to step into the Octagon was enough to call his two-year journey to this point a success. He admitted as much after arriving in Cleveland earlier this week for the fight.There are a lot of victories here, Brooks said. Just doing this, I won... Just stepping foot in the Octagon, thats a victory.Of course, not everyone will agree. Those who labeled Brooks foray into MMA as misguided and viewed the UFCs promotion of him as undeserved will point to the expected result as confirmation of their steadfast opinion,?but theyre missing the point. Brooks journey was more than just about a check mark in the win-loss column -- its about taking control of your life, regardless of how old you are, and doing what makes you happy.I dont put any stock into starting earlier or starting later, Brooks said. To me its never too late to start anything you want to do, and if you think so Im sorry your dreams are so small.Brooks couldnt contain his smile as he walked to the Octagon on Saturday night while Living Colours Cult of Personality, the song that became synonymous with CM Punk the wrestler, played over the arena sound system. It was a smile we hadnt seen from him in years. Quicken Loans Arena erupted as if LeBron James hit a game-winning basket as soon as his song started to play. It was the moment his fans had been waiting for since CM Punk walked away from the WWE for good in the same arena almost three years ago.As soon as the fight started, however, Gall put Brooks on his back, and it was over two minutes later when he was forced to tap. But the loss didnt erase Brooks smile. If anything, the loss made him want to get back into the gym and train for his next fight.In life you go big or you go home, Brooks said as he stood in the Octagon after his first fight. I just like to take challenges. It was a hell of a mountain to try to climb, and I didnt get to the summit today, but that doesnt mean Im going to give up. It doesnt mean Im going to stop. I will be back, believe it or not. This is the most fun Ive ever had in my life. Its the second-best night of my life, besides marrying my wife.The sellout crowd didnt get to see Brooks on his feet for long or throw any punches while he was on his back, effectively sucking the life out of the building, but hearing him talk after the fight gave them an opportunity to give him a standing ovation on his way out of the Octagon.I know there are a lot of doubters, but lifes about falling down and getting up. It doesnt matter how many times you get knocked down, its about getting back up. So if theres any kid out there thats told by parent or a coach or a teacher or somebody they look up to thats supposed to push them and believe in them and theyre told, no, dont listen to them. Believe in yourself. Sometimes the outcome isnt what you desire it to be, but the true failure in life is not trying at all. I know it sounds preachy and kind of weird coming from a guy who just got beat up, but f--- it, this is the time of my life.Brooks would have liked to have made his debut earlier, but a shoulder injury and a herniated disk in his back which required surgery pushed his first match all the way to UFC 203 in Cleveland, and to the same arena where he walked into WWE chairman Vince McMahons office on Jan. 24, 2014, and told him he was done with professional wrestling for good. He walked out of the Quicken Loans Arena, got in his car and drove about five hours on Interstate 90 west to his home in Chicago and never looked back.I think I jokingly might have said Im cursed in this building, but I actually truly believe one of the best things that ever happened to me, happened in this building, Brooks said. It was a breaking point on both sides and something that needed to happen, and it needed to happen dramatically. Things happen for a reason, and Im here now. Theres a little bit of a thought of how poetic that is.Brooks married April Jeanette Mendez, better known to wrestling fans as AJ Lee, on June 13, 2014. April followed in her husbands footsteps and left the WWE last year, and they live in Chicago with their dog, Larry. The fact that the couple is able to lead a normal life now, while Brooks follows his dream of being a UFC fighter, is one of the biggest reasons Brooks has no regrets about his decision, regardless of what his record in the Octagon ends up being.Traveling sucks, and I just got burnt out on it, he said. No matter how frustrated, beat up or bad a day I had in the gym, I would always go home, see my wife, see my dog and sleep in my own bed and take a shower in my own shower ... I get to sleep in my bed every night. No matter how hard training was, I get to go home and kiss my wife. Thats a luxury in my world. I never used to get to do that.While Brooks didnt officially sign with the UFC until December, he knew he wanted to transition into mixed martial arts after leaving the WWE. This wasnt about him leaving one pro-wrestling promotion for another or leaving the WWE and returning in a year or two for a big pay day. He was looking to change his life forever.I knew this was going to happen, Brooks said. My wife and I are the same in every respect. Weve kind of visualized our lives unfolding, and aside from a few twists and turns, it happened exactly how we always thought. Did I know it was going to be in Cleveland? Did I know it was going to be in the UFC? No, maybe, maybe not, but I knew I was going to fight.Saturdays result doesnt mean Brooks is going to fade away and quit what he has just started. The journey to finally get to the Octagon has been too hard and too fun for him to give it all up now that he has started the next chapter of his life.Im happy. Thats all that matters to me, Brooks said. Im in this for the long haul for sure. Cheap Soccer Jerseys Authentic .Y. -- Syracuse has turned up the defence at the right time all season, and when High Point threatened to pull off a monumental upset the second-ranked Orange did what they do best with their quick hands and savvy play. Cheap Real Madrid Jerseys China . Neymar curled home a free kick from just outside the area to put the 2014 World Cup host ahead in the 44th minute. Three minutes after the break, a simple through pass from Paulinho freed Oscar and the Chelsea star rounded goalkeeper Jung Sung-ryong to extend Brazils lead. http://www.cheaprealmadridjerseys.com/ . Darren Helm scored on Detroits sixth attempt in the shootout and then Jonas Gustavsson stopped Andrew Shaws shot, lifting the Detroit Red Wings to a 5-4 win over the Chicago Blackhawks on Wednesday night. LOS ANGELES -- Following up consecutive Sweet Sixteen appearances with the programs fourth losing season since John Wooden was hired in 1948 doesnt cut it at UCLA.Coach Steve Alford found that out real quick.With fans irate after a 15-17 finish and no postseason invite, Alford returned a one-year contract extension he signed after his first season. He also wrote an apology letter to the fans.Coach Wooden raised the bar at UCLA; theres expectations, he said. When you dont meet or come close to those expectations, there are going to be consequences. I want the fans to know there is frustration on our part just as much if not even more so. Just letting them know we care.Then Alford went out and recruited the best class hes brought to Westwood since arriving in 2013.Lonzo Ball is the headliner, a 6-foot-6 guard from nearby Chino Hills who led his high school to a California state title and undefeated season. Balls arrival should allow Bryce Alford, the coachs son playing his final season, to shift to the 2 spot and allow Ball to focus on ball-handling duties.T.J. Leaf is the other prized recruit. Like Ball, the 6-9 forward was also a McDonalds All-American who scored 3,022 points in his prep career in El Cajon in San Diego County.Bring what you brought out of high school to Westwood, the elder Alford has told his newcomers. Thats why youre here, and thats what we need out of you as a team.The Bruins were picked to finish third in the Pac-12 by the media. They were 6-12 last season and had the 10th-worst defense in the league, allowing 76.7 points a game. Blending newcomers Ball and Leaf with the veterans and improving the defensive play will be Alfords top priorities as he seeks to engineer a quick fix that gets the Bruins back to the NCAA Tournament. Cheap Real Madrid Jerseys Authentic. UCLA opens the season at home against Pacific on Nov. 11. The Bruins play five games at home in the first month of the season and make the short trip to Orange County for the Wooden Legacy tournament over Thanksgiving.Their non-conference schedule is highlighted by a trip to Kentucky on Dec. 3 and a week later Michigan visits Pauley Pavilion.Here are some things to watch this season with the Bruins:RETURNING STARTERS: Besides the younger Alford, the Bruins return three other starters from last season: senior guard Isaac Hamilton (16.8 points per game), 7-foot junior Thomas Welsh (11.2 and 8.5 rebounds) and sophomore guard Aaron Holiday (10.3), who could slide into a sixth-man role with Balls arrival. That gives UCLA the second-most returning scoring in the Pac-12 behind Stanford.3-POINT LAND: UCLAs returning players shot a combined 37 percent from 3-point range last season and took 93 percent of the teams total 3-point attempts. Their top long-range shooter was Holiday, who hit 42 percent from beyond the arc. Hamilton was also efficient, shooting 38 percent from 3-point range.BIG IKE: Ike (say EE-kay) Anigbogu, a 6-10, 250-pounder from nearby Corona could play his way into a prominent role as a freshman. He rounds out the touted trio that Alford landed, all of whom are from Southern California.BETTER START: The Bruins will look to set a winning tone in their first game after being upset in overtime by Monmouth in last seasons opener, one of a handful of embarrassing losses to start a season. They also lost openers in 2009 and 2011 under Ben Howland and 2002 under Steve Lavin. Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys China Cheap Jerseys From China Cheap NFL Jerseys Authentic Wholesale Jerseys China Cheap NFL Jerseys China NFL Cheap Jerseys ' ' '