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Was Brock Lesnar Working Dana White To Sell His WWE Angle?

The UFC and WWE worlds went wild when Dana White teased the idea that Brock Lesnar could return to the UFC. 24 hours later it looks like Brock is no closer to returning than he was before showing up at UFC 146 which begs the question, what was Brock Lesnar really doing at UFC 146?

It all started Saturday night at UFC 146 when Brock Lesnar was shown prominently at ringside during the UFC heavyweight championship main-event between Junior Dos Santos and his rival Frank Mir. Lesnar’s appearance immediately raised questions since Lesnar is known for only leaving home for business. What business Lesnar left home for though is the question that I am asking today.

The MMA media went directly to UFC president Dana White. The president was asked flat out whether Lesnar was coming back. Once White responded with a “possibly”, it was off to the races with the hopes that the biggest drawing card in MMA history would return. A meeting was scheduled later that night as Lesnar’s audiences in pro wrestling and MMA eagerly waited for the hopeful announcement of Lesnar’s next UFC fight.

According to Dave Meltzer the meeting did not go well. There aren’t a whole lot of details available other than just that. Meltzer reports that there is no deal and Dana White is not happy. So what happened? It seems almost impossible to think that White and Lesnar couldn’t make a deal unless…there was no deal to be made.

I posed the question in my blog on Saturday night/Sunday morning whether Brock’s intentions of returning to the UFC were sincere or whether this was an elaborate setup to sell his WWE angle. Is it really mere coincidence that Brock shows up at UFC 146, is shown on television in the main-event, convinces Dana that he wants to fight to the point that Dana tells the media this all at a time where Brock has “quit” the WWE as part of his pro wrestling storyline? I am starting to think not.

My initial impressions were that he’d be crazy to try and sucker Dana White into a work. At some point Brock may want to do something with the UFC whether it is fight, commentary, analysis, etc. Why would he jeopardize his relationship with the UFC just to sell a WWE angle? Is the payoff of people thinking that he really quit the WWE (while most know he didn’t) really worth sabotaging your own future paydays from the UFC? I don’t think so but this is one strange story.

Whether he wants to fight or not, Brock is under a WWE contract. I questioned on Saturday whether Brock had a deal that would allow him to fight and wrestle. Meltzer says no in his latest report. Keep in mind that Brock’s deal is for a year, ending in April or whenever the WWE exercises all of their dates on him. Brock negotiating now to fight in 2013 seems perfectly plausible with a contract that will expire next April. I couldn’t imagine Brock doing both at the same time but it isn’t as if his WWE deal is lengthy. Quite frankly at this rate they may even exercise all of their dates on him by January. So negotiating with the UFC seems perfectly legal to me in regards to his WWE deal.

Meltzer also speculated that Brock may be trying to play the UFC and WWE against each other. Again, Brock’s WWE deal expires in a year. Why not start now and try and leverage a new or longer deal with the WWE? He did this in the past with the UFC and it worked. According to Meltzer, the feeling is that this is exactly what was going down and Uncle Dana isn’t happy. Although if he is trying to play one another that would indicate that Brock would fight under the right deal.

Do I think Brock will fight again in the UFC? I do. There is way too much money on the table for everyone not to make a deal. While Brock’s WWE deal is $5 million, that $5 million can easily be made with one fight against Frank Mir underneath a strong main-event. On the other hand if Brock’s health won’t allow him to properly train, then there probably is no UFC fight in the future. The only person that really knows this is Brock Lesnar and if that is the case…what was Brock doing at UFC 146?

Maybe it was desperation? Big things were expected by all parties when Brock re-signed with the WWE. I am sure Brock gets a cut of his pay per view main-events and if so, had to be disappointed with the slight increase he made with Extreme Rules 2012. Will working the WWE audience into believing he really quit turn into that big bonus he hopes for at SummerSlam 2012?

I doubt it but it is certainly worth a try.

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Eric G.

Eric is the owner and editor-in-chief of the Camel Clutch Blog. Eric has worked in the pro wrestling industry since 1995 as a ring announcer in ECW and a commentator/host on television, PPV, and home video. Eric also hosted Pro Wrestling Radio on terrestrial radio from 1998-2009. Check out some of Eric’s work on his IMDB bio and Wikipedia. Eric has an MBA from Temple University’s Fox School of Business.

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