Over the last few years, Brock Lesnar has toyed with the idea of returning to the UFC. However, Lesnar has remained a mainstay with the WWE on a semblance of a part-time schedule as one of the company’s biggest draws. Things have taken another intriguing turn that could see him get his shot at returning to the octagon.
Brock Lesnar’s standing with the UFC
Since July 2016, Brock Lesnar continues to remain outside the UFC.
The conversations around a return have cooled, but the possibility is always there for Lesnar. It’s something that he discussed on numerous occasions the potential of getting back into the octagon. Since his last fight against Mark Hunt, there has been enough time for things to return to a solid standing with the UFC.
The 43-year-old served his year-long suspension after testing positive for a banned substance called clomiphene, an estrogen blocker. That changed the result of his win over Hunt to a no-contest. Lesnar elected to retire a second time in February 2017 but stormed the octagon after UFC 226 in July 2018 to challenge then heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier.
Lesnar began the process of throwing his name back in the mix in the drug-testing pool that month. It created chatter around potentially seeing him take on Cormier for the heavyweight title, but Dana White confirmed in June 2019 that Lesnar was “done” with MMA. However, the chatter around a possible UFC return has come about again.
Brock Lesnar has become a free agent
Over nearly the last decade, Brock Lesnar has remained a top draw for the WWE despite his part-time schedule.
Vince McMahon has made the most out of Lesnar’s presence that included a lengthy reign as the WWE Universal champion. However, things have significantly cooled on that front after Lesnar’s last match, where he lost the title to Drew McIntyre at WrestleMania 36.
The dialogue has shifted toward ongoing discussions between both sides discussing another deal. These lingering talks have also led to Lesnar effectively becoming a free agent, according to Mike Johnson of PWInsider.com.
It’s not out of the norm for the 43-year-old to enter the open market during this process, but it’s notable given his business’s stature. It opens the door to him having the ability to take offers from AEW or any other wrestling promotions and the UFC. There hasn’t been any dialogue in that direction, but it’s certainly something that is on the table.
Lesnar controls his future, but it could see him garner a lucrative deal that pushes him out of the WWE entirely. The situation has already seen Vince McMahon commit to a new storyline with Paul Heyman becoming the advocate for Roman Reigns. There is much that can change, but anything is possible.
WWE has no control over the situation
The WWE may have established ongoing discussions with Brock Lesnar, but the fate of the contract talks are out of their control.
Lesnar is free to pursue any possibility he desires as he’s no longer under a WWE contract. There haven’t been active conversations around a UFC return, but he did toss around a couple of years ago the idea of potentially fighting Jon Jones, who has become one of his close friends. Jones recently made it known he’s itching to get back into the octagon as he took to Twitter after Stipe Miocic’s win over Daniel Cormier asking for a title match.
It’s unlikely that Dana White immediately goes that route as he believes Francis Ngannou is next in line for a championship fight. However, that pushes forth the possibility of the Jones-Lesnar match that UFC fans would love to see.
Beyond that, this further underlines that the WWE doesn’t have any control or say over what Lesnar decides next.