Four reasons why it would be great to see Brock Lesnar in the UFC againPosted on June 10, 2012, 11:09 PM by Mike Searson
UFC President Dana White said that former Heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar requested to have a "sit-down" with him over a potential return to UFC after UFC 146. Unfortunately, according to White: “The meeting that we had didn’t really go very well. It wasn’t a great meeting. It was probably one of the worst meetings we’ve ever had with Brock Lesnar. I honestly have not talked to him since, so I don’t know where we are at. So, all the stuff you are seeing on the Internet is typical Internet (deleted)."
While it sounds unfortunate to Lesnar fans, one thing I have learned over the years is to never say, "never", especially in the fight game. On a personal note, I think a Lesnar return to the UFC would be good for at least four reasons:
Lesnar's MMA record is 5 wins and 3 losses; on the surface that screams, "So what?", it implies a mediocre fighter. However, if those numbers are broken down, they tell a different story. He lost his first UFC fight to Frank Mir. Lesnar then went on to victories over Heath Herring, Randy Couture, Mir in a rematch and Shane Carwin; before losing his title to Cain Velasquez. Half of his UFC fights have been championship bouts, 3 of which he won. He took the Heavyweight belt from Randy Couture, defended it against Mir and Carwin; and finally lost it to Velasquez. Lesnar was a major force in the UFC’s heavyweight division, there is no reason why he could not give the fight game another 5 years, if his health issues are a thing of the past.
The Heavyweight division has more than enough talent for him to earn his way back. A third fight with Mir, a rematch with Carwin; perhaps some new blood in the form of Stefan Struve or what could be a huge draw in its own right: Roy Nelson. All of these could infuse a new sense of excitement into the UFC and that does not even count a rematch with Velasquez. Eventually fans could even see the fight with Dos Santos, which was promised in 2011 as part of TUF:13.
In his fight against Frank Mir at UFC 100, the pay-per-view rate was at 1.6 million. UFC 116 against Shane Carwin and UFC 121 against Velasquez each brought in 1.16 million and 1.05 million viewers respectively. His fight against Couture garnered over 1 million ppv buys as well. Contrast that with UFC 146 and its all Heavyweight card at a mere 560,000 ppv buys. Lesnar brings star-power to the cards: some fans love him; some fans love to hate him. Regardless of the reason, they do tune in to watch him when he is headlining. Maybe he is just bringing in crossover traffic from pro-wrestling fans, whatever it is, it is working. Lesnar has been one of the highest paid UFC fighters of all time, much of that has to do with the pay-per-view bonuses he earns.
Many fans and commentators are quick to dismiss Lesnar as a lumbering giant. On the contrary, he is a giant, but he has the athletic ability to go with it. After his loss to Mir, he came back to the Octagon a changed man against Herring. He proved himself more than capable as a coach on Season 13 of The Ultimate Fighter. He embodies a fighter that evolves with the game: his strategy against Carwin was solid. People usually only think of Lesnar and the WWE outside of the UFC. He was a NCAA champion wrestler in college with a record of 106–5. He played for the Minnesota Vikings in the 2004 NFL preseason, before he tried MMA. This is a man who can transition from one sport to another and back, successfully.
A return to the Octagon by Lesnar would benefit the UFC and MMA overall. Whether or not he will return is not in the hands of straw polls, internet scribes, or even the most die-hard MMA or wrestling fan. Lesnar's return to the UFC is up to Brock Lesnar and Dana White. They will need to hammer it out, if it comes to the table again.
Until then, participate in our poll to say whether you want to see Lesnar back in the Octagon, or not.