Although Ronda Rousey’s contract signing Sunday at WWE’s “Elimination Chamber” was the story that most pro wrestling and MMA fans were paying attention to, the photo posted on Instagram of Dana White standing next to a Brock Lesnar wearing a UFC T-shirt drew the most speculation.
Lesnar wasn’t at the WWE event but still made his way to Las Vegas and met up with his former employer. The current WWE Universal Champion is set to defend his title against Roman Reigns at “WrestleMania,” but there was immediate speculation that Lesnar could return to the UFC and compete in the heavyweight division. Obviously, there would be hurdles to clear as a lingering suspension from the United States Anti-Doping Agency for his failed drug test against Mark Hunt at UFC 200 is still a factor. There would also have to be dealings between the WWE and UFC in order to make this work.
Although it could be much ado about nothing and simply nothing more than two old buddies hanging out, that’s not what social media interprets anything as because everything has a purpose.
For a moment, let’s assume that Lesnar is going to make his return to the UFC and, somehow, this USADA thing gets cleared up. The heavyweight division is relatively thin but the current champion Stipe Miocic is already locked into a showdown at UFC 226 with UFC light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier in July. With Miocic off the table, who could Lesnar face if he were to return to the Octagon?
- Francis Ngannou
Dana White strapped a rocket to Ngannou’s back the moment he arrived in the UFC and was accused by Miocic of pushing the challenger over the champion when the two faced each other at UFC 220 in January. Ngannou came up short but that doesn’t mean that the UFC has lost faith in him. A showdown with Lesnar would be exactly what could push him back into the spotlight. A fight between a slugger who doesn’t like to be put on his back versus a wrestler who doesn’t like getting punched in the face could certainly be fun and would be the most attractive fight for Lesnar outside of …
- Jon Jones
The UFC is dying for a true superfight with Conor McGregor still sitting on the bench and counting all the ways to spend his $80 million from the Mayweather fight. A Jones-Lesnar fight would certainly fit the bill. Jones has been teasing a move up from light heavyweight for a few years and has been posting videos of him throwing up a ridiculous amount of weight. With the 205-pound division being cleaned out by Jones, a move to heavyweight makes sense. A showdown with Lesnar would establish the winner as the new No. 1 contender and would be a massive draw for the promotion. The only problem is that both fighters have failed drug tests and it’s a pretty tall task to trust both of them with a main event spot.
- Derrick Lewis
Once you move past Ngannou and Jones, the field gets a little murky when it comes to who Lesnar could face upon his return. Lewis fits that bill. “The Black Beast” has star power but has yet to truly put it all together in a big fight. A fight against Lesnar could be the tipping point for Lewis. It’s another fight between a slugger and a wrestler and it would be a tossup when it comes to trying to determine a winner. Also, Lewis can sell a fight and it surely would be interesting to see what he’d have to say about Lesnar in the build to the fight.
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