Less than six months ago, Brock Lesnar was stepping into the Octagon, shoving new heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier and starting to build the hype for an eventual showdown between the two of them.
Fast forward to December and Cormier has already defended his title and he’s now three months away from the deadline he set for his retirement from the sport ahead of his 40th birthday.
Meanwhile, Lesnar is still part of the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) roster where he’s getting ready to perform at the ‘Royal Rumble’ in January and there’s still no sign that he’s training or plotting his return to the UFC.
It seemed like perfect timing for Lesnar to come back and face Cormier in March at UFC 235 with the heavyweight title on the line but it doesn’t seem like that’s in the works any longer based on the latest update from UFC president Dana White.
“He’s not out of the picture,” White said about Lesnar. “I think he’s already under contract with me. So we were talking about it and then he ended up signing a new deal with WWE. What I think happens is he’s in a very unique position cause he can play this thing between UFC and WWE. They get right down to the wire and I think Vince [McMahon] throws so much money at him that he says ‘all right I’ll do it again’.
“Cause this is here no matter what. When he’s ready, he can come in here and fight and he’s going to make a s—t load of money here, too. So it makes sense. I’m assuming that’s what’s going on.”
Lesnar’s old deal with WWE was reportedly up in August, which made sense given the timing of his reappearance in the UFC in July.
Since then, Lesnar has made a couple of appearances for WWE and now holds their ‘universal championship’, which further embeds him with the company and their plans going forward in 2019.
Obviously it’s not impossible that Lesnar could fight in the UFC while still remaining under contract with WWE — the same thing already happened when he returned at UFC 200 in 2016.
Still, White says he’s not going to sit around and wait for his phone to ring just hoping that Lesnar will be on the other end of the line.
“One of the things you guys know about me, I don’t wait for anybody,” White said. “I’m not f—king waiting around for anybody. I’m rolling with the business. Guy doesn’t want to fight this year? It’s all good.
“It doesn’t matter how big you are, what your deal is, you don’t want to fight, do your thing. When you’re ready to fight, you come back and you talk to me and we’ll figure something out.”