Brock Lesnar addresses his Night of Champions rematch against John Cena
When Brock entered WWE, he brought with him a championship amateur career and an overwhelming physique. The impressive
combination caused many to believe they were looking for "The Next Big Thing." Over the course of his WWE career, Lesnar
proved those predictions to be correct.
Under the tutelage of Paul Heyman, Lesnar made an immediate impact upon his 2002 debut. A mere three months into his career,
he defeated Rob Van Dam to win the prestigious King of the Ring tournamnet. Two months after that, he beat The Rock
for the WWE Championship. In short, Lesnar accomplished more in half a year than most Superstars do during an entire career.
Over the next two years, Lesnar continues to shine, especially against Undertaker. At No Mercy 2002, he defeated
the "Deadman" inside the demonic Hell in a Cell. At the following year's event, Lesnar beat Undertaker in a Biker Chain
Match. He even last eliminated the "Deadman" to win the 2003 Royal Rumble. With his victory in the Rumble,
Lesnar earned the opportunity to challenge Kurt Angle for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania XIX.
With visions of making it big in the NFL, Lesnar left WWE in 2004. While fans never saw him on the gridiron, he soon
announced he was starting a career in mixed martial arts. Before illness derailed his career, fans were treated to a
taste of his past in October 2010, when Brock engaged in a chilling staredown with the Undertaker after a bout.
On April 2, 2012, Brock made a shocking return the night after WrestleMania XXVIII and attacked John Cena.
The reigning WWE World Heavyweight Champion
Brock Lesnar is set for a return to mixed martial arts when his WWE contract expires in April 2015. WWE, UFC and Bellator MMA are likely to be interested in his commercial appeal. On Wrestling Observer Radio, Dave Meltzer has stated, “At this moment he’s leaning towards the UFC.”
However, Bellator is aggressively playing the game to bring in recognised name fighters. Furthermore, Bellator could suit Brock’s skill level more than the UFC. As for WWE, they are potentially going to be priced out of extending Lesnar’s current deal. The WWE Network expense means that Brock’s value is diminished in pro wrestling.
As witnessed this last weekend, Bellator is more about promoting gimmick MMA than the elite level sport in the UFC. That isn’t a criticism of Bellator. This past weekend’s Bellator 131 show with former UFC stars Tito Ortiz vs Stephan Bonnar was the most watched MMA fight on cable tv in the whole of 2014.
Bellator’s strategy of using former headliners is a great way to seize casual fans. Lesnar would be the ultimate name for Bellator to achieve their goal of appealing to viewers. Like Ortiz, Lesnar probably wouldn’t take many wins in the UFC. But in the Bellator group the competition is less fierce. Lesnar could be matched with ‘name’ fighters rather than ‘skilled’ fighters.
Meltzer states that two potentially huge fights Bellator could line up for Lesnar would be Kimbo Slice and Bobby Lashley.
Kimbo has mainstream notoriety and is a fight that Lesnar could win. It would do massive ratings and is a win-win for both Bellator and Lesnar. Alternatively, Lesnar vs Lashley is an obvious fight to make. It could be marketed to MMA and WWE fans, although Lashley would represent more of a challenge than Slice.
You’d still have to see UFC as the leaders to capture Lesnar’s signature. They have more money and it sounds like UFC President Dana White wants Lesnar.
“Brock wouldn’t go to Bellator,” White said this week, “Brock wants to fight the best guys in the world. The best guys are here.”
The big winner in all of this is Brock Lesnar. When he enters negotiations with any of these groups, they’ll be aware that he has other options on the table. That’s going to drive his price up significantly—something which WWE likely can’t afford in their current Network related austerity.