Daniel Cormier believes the reason Brock Lesnar remained with the WWE was because he couldn’t come to terms with the UFC.
Cormier will defend his heavyweight title against Stipe Miocic in the main event of UFC 241 on August 17. However, he was expected to have his next title defense against Lesnar in a super fight. In the end, it never came to fruition with Lesnar retiring from mixed martial arts (MMA) for the third time in his career, and returning to WWE programming.
It was reported earlier this month that the former heavyweight champion preferred a flat fee to compete against Cormier due to the new ESPN deal. And that seems to be what prevented a fight according to Cormier:
“I’m sure Brock couldn’t come to terms with the UFC, in terms of financial offer,” Cormier told ESPN’s Marc Raimondi. “There’s a lot of uncertainty in the world of mixed martial arts right now in terms of pay-per-view. It’s not as straight forward as when Brock was there.
“I think when Brock looked at the landscape of the sport, what they were offering him, Brock said, ‘I can make guaranteed money [in WWE].’ Not work as hard. He’d have to work his a*s off [to fight me] and it’s probably gonna go the bad way. Whereas with the WWE, it’s usually determined in his favor. So, as a businessman, I think Brock made the right decision.
“Then it works, right? Everybody is talking like, ‘Oh, [WWE Chairman] Vince McMahon keeps putting the belt on Brock’ or keeps doing this with Brock. Brock was on the pay-per-view and then Brock was on Monday night and the ratings increased. … There’s a method to the old man’s madness. He just continues to kind of rely on Brock and Brock has shown to be a commodity that keeps working for him.”
With Cormier planning on retiring in 2020, it looks like a fight with Lesnar will not be happening at all.