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Why do YOU want Brock Lesnar back in the WWE? – Inside The Wheelhouse

Brock Lesnar WWEThe news broke over Wrestlemania 28 weekend and then it was confirmed this past Monday Night on RAW. Brock Lesnar is back in the WWE and will be wrestling a schedule that has been described as “more then the Undertaker but less then Goldberg.” The deal is reportedly a one-year deal and while Lesnar returning to the WWE is good for business, I don’t understand why the fans of the WWE are so excited for him to be back.

The pop that Lesnar got when he returned was historic; I’d be lying to you if I too didn’t “mark out” when “The Next Big Thing” came out on the ramp of the RAW SuperShow. I was a huge fan of Brock Lesnar when he was in the WWE from 2002 to 2004 and while it’s great to have him back in the WWE, I have a tough time welcoming him back with complete open arms. While it’s great that he is back and it’s great for business, I haven’t forgotten everything that was in-between the years he left the WWE in 2004 and today in 2012.

It amazes me how quickly we can forget the way Brock Lesnar exited the WWE back in 2004. A week before his much anticipated and much hyped Wrestlemania 20 match with Goldberg at Madison Square Garden news broke that he was leaving the WWE for a shot at the NFL. The wrestling world was spun upside down with the shocking news that the biggest star in the WWE the past two years was leaving the company.

[adinserter block=”2″]From the day after Wrestlemania 18 to the day he exited the WWE at Wrestlemania 20 he was pushed to be the top star in the company. His run from the night after Wrestlemania 18 to Summerslam 2002 where he beat The Rock to win the WWE Championship was historic. Never in the history of the WWE had we seen a star pushed to the top so quickly. It appeared that the torch from the “attitude era” that The Rock & Steve Austin carried was handed over to Brock Lesnar.

He was the next big star, he was the next big hero and he was going to be the star that carried the WWE on his back for years to come and for two years he did exactly that. Until he wanted out of the WWE to pursue a career in the NFL and leaving the WWE without it’s future & current top star. The WWE heavily invested a lot of time, money and effort in making Brock Lesnar that next link from Hogan to Austin to The Rock to him and he walked away because he had grown unhappy with the wrestling business.

The fans of the WWE were shocked and upset that Lesnar was leaving the company voicing their displeasure for the exiting superstar at Wrestlemania 20. The moment is infamous and the match itself was one of the worst Wrestlemania matches ever. His exit from the WWE pissed off an entire legion of WWE fans that watched him grow the past two years and knew he was the next to carry the company.

His attempt at the NFL was a failure as he was a late cut by the Minnesota Vikings and he wanted to return to wrestling at a New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) but it was blocked by the WWE since Lesnar had signed a no-compete clause that prevented him from wrestling and fighting in any Mixed Martial Arts companies until June 2010. This lawsuit actually was the start for a slight door opening as the WWE and Lesnar had agreed upon a new contract for him to return during the summer 2005. The agreement was short lived as he shortly thereafter withdrew involvement with the WWE and once again angered the wrestling community.

Shortly after a new WWE deal ended so did the lawsuit he had with the company that helped build him as he was able to appear on MMA shows and he was now able to wrestle for NJPW. His short time with NJPW saw him also win the IWGP Heavyweight Championship before losing to TNA wrestler Kurt Angle in what would be his last wrestling match until now. With the lawsuit out of the way Lesnar and his wrestling career done he was no available to train for an MMA run.

The MMA & UFC career of Brock Lesnar is well known as he was able to turn the MMA world on its heads and helping make it more mainstream during his three years in the UFC. At one time he was the highest paid athlete in all of the UFC and in MMA making $5.3 million in his final year with the UFC. He fought his last match and retired at UFC 141 on December 30th, 2011 leading to an immediate whirlwind of “WWE return rumors” to begin the moment he announced retirement.

It wasn’t until Wrestlemania 28 weekend that we heard that the WWE and Brock Lesnar were working out a deal which lead to a one-year deal being finalized. The wrestling world and their fans were excited to have Brock Lesnar return to the WWE. “The Next Big Thing” was returning to the squared circle and wrestling again in the WWE…my how quickly forget the past.

I am a fan of Brock Lesnar, I enjoyed watching him wrestle and I enjoyed watching his MMA career but what I don’t understand is why the wrestling world welcoming this man back with such big arms? We are coming off a month of news where there was heat and disdain towards The Rock for leaving wrestling in 2004 (the same year & show Brock Lesnar did) but coming back last year to wrestle in the main event match at Wrestlemania 28. Now the same exact thing is happening again but it appears the wrestling world is fine with it and excited for it, I just don’t get the hypocrisy in it all.

In 2004 The Rock for all intensive purposes was a part-time wrestler. His full-time career in the WWE basically came to an end the day he dropped the WWE Championship at Summerslam 2002 to Brock Lesnar. He sporadically appeared right around Wrestlemania 19 and 20 becoming what The Undertaker is today, a “Wrestlemania attraction.” But during those 7 years away The Rock at least made minimal appearances on WWE TV and at the Hall of Fame ceremony, during Lesnar’s time away he bashed the wrestling business.

In 2004, Lesnar was a full-time wrestler and was the biggest star in the company. A month prior he held the WWE Championship before dropping it to the late-Eddie Guerrero. His exited from the WWE at Wrestlemania 20 was because he was “unhappy” living life on the road, wanted to pursue an NFL career and never wanted to deal with the “what if’s” we question late in life. He walked out on the company that help build him and most importantly walked out on the wrestling fans.

Granted the MSG crowd let Lesnar hear it at Wrestlemania 20 but they had every right to because they were pissed that the same guy the WWE invested the last two years was the same guy they invested their time as a wrestling fan the last two years and he was walking out on them. Remember how Lesnar reacted to those chants? By giving the WWE fans the middle finger before getting stunned by “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, that was his last image in a WWE ring until this past Monday on RAW.

Lesnar blamed the wrestling business for making him addicted to painkillers saying in some interviews that he doesn’t remember the latter part of his WWE run because he was hopped up on “vodka and painkillers.” His comments towards wrestling and the WWE in his post-WWE career were not glorifying at all as he bashed the business. But here we are eight years later and we are welcoming him back with open arms again, I just don’t get why fans want are happy that Brock Lesnar is back in the WWE.

To me this is a case where Lesnar is striking the kettle while it’s hot and getting the most money he can out of the WWE, Lesnar needed to return to the WWE as soon as possible before he became and afterthought & mostly forgotten now that his MMA career is over. “The Next Big Thing” needed to stay in the spotlight and knew it was now or never to cash in on his popularity before it was too late. To think that Lesnar is coming back to help the wrestling business, bring more viewers to the WWE or improve the wrestling business then you are clearly mistaken. Lesnar wants the most money he can make and the WWE is going to offer it to him right now.

Lesnar walked out on the wrestling business, the WWE and the wrestling fans abruptly in 2004. I don’t understand why 8 years later they are welcoming him back like the savior that he thinks he is. It appears that a return to wrestling was only convenient for Brock Lesnar when wanted to, had he returned any other time the next couple of years he may have been forgotten and not cashed in on the most money.

[adinserter block=”1″]Brock Lesnar is good for business but fans should be asking themselves if it’s the right decision for the WWE to give him basically a third chance. I don’t get why the red carpet is being rolled out and more importantly I don’t get why the fans are excited. Anyone who has listened to Lesnar’s interviews in the past know he is not the most humble person in the world for his opportunities and he most likely isn’t humble for the WWE bringing him back, he is clearly looking at this as “business” & getting the most money he can.

Wrestling fans should be asking themselves, after the way he left YOU all high and dry in 2004 is it right to be wanting him back as badly as we do in 2012?

For more on this topic join us for the Thursday April 5th edition of “The Still Real to Us Show” and download the show at www.wheelhouseradio.com or www.wrestlechat.net.

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You can follow “The Champ Jeff Peck” on Twitter at www.twitter.com/therealjeffpeck you can also follow Wheelhouse Radio on twitter at www.twitter.com/thewheelhouse and you can e-mail them @ wheelhouseradio@gmail.com

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  1. It comes down to this, Lesnar has the IT factor. He gets people excited. They crave that. And, they won't hold him to the same standards as normal people because he brings that to the table.

    Fair or not, that's how it is.

  2. The only positive is if they plan to exploit the fact that Lesnar is only in it for the money and has no real passion for it. That would actually be some character. It could actually give John Cena something more tangible to work with.

    However, if WWE goes the route of trying to make Brock the monster heel they will have their work cut out for them. Especially if they want fans to rally behind Cena.

    It's because of Cena that fans are more accepting of Brock and even Rock than they should be. When starved for so long most will eat anything. Right now, it doesn't matter how he left – all that matter is that he's returned and it's FRESH.

    It must have been burning Vince up in the back that the "We want Lesnar!" chants were derailing Cena's promo. That coupled with the "Yes!" chants marked a banner night for the 'Universe' speaking their collective minds. Or maybe just Miami.

  3. I look at Lesnar as damaged goods; the only reason he's back in WWE (other than money) is the fact that his UFC star has fallen rather dramatically in the past two years. How do you market a guy as the Next Big Thing when the last time we saw him, he was getting beat up by Alistair Overeem (after a previous butt kicking by Cain Velasquez).

  4. Ultimate Warrior a la 1996 anyone? BAck after Wrestlemania, he'll be there for the first few months and then he'll sporadically no show more and more events. He'll be gone in 4 or 5 months. But I'm goin to enjoy these months, Brock as an in ring performer is up there with the Angles, the Benoits, the HBKs and HHHs and is just awesome, from the moment he took THAT chair shot from Jeff HArdy, to beating the Rock, to F5ing the Big Show and to that Shooting Star Press at Wrestlemania 19, he is a beast and I feel like im 17 again when he first came to WWE. Maybe theres a job for Paul Heyman again lol but yeah Jeff youre right, he is a prima donna and I question WWE's thinking here but its certainly goin to be interesting

  5. FINALLY, someone else who sees Lesnar as the prima donna he truly is. Many thanks for this article, Jeff. My hat goes off to you.

  6. I want him back so I can teach Dana White a lesson! I'm not sure what lesson yet…but he's gonna get SCHOOLED…er something.

  7. I don't know how I feel about this yet. Lesnar coming back is good for business and good for him, and in the end I think that's the only thing that matters. Vince and the WWE know what they are getting themselves into, promising minimal dates and big money, so if the WWE gets burned again, you can blame it on Vince. This is high risk, high reward. This guy was the biggest PPV draw outside of maybe Mayweather and Pacquio.

    As for being really excited, I'll admit i marked out when his music hit, but outside of Cena or Taker I dont know who else he is going to go against. CM Punk? As much as Punk has risen in stardom and he is my favorite wrestler at this moment, he's just not to the level of Brock. Im interested to see where this all goes, but Im not counting on Brock for anything.

    I think the one thing we are all missing out on is how John Cena is being handled. He went from the top dog, to now losing to Rock and being F5 by Brock in 24 hours. Is that how you treating the guy that has been carrying the company for basically the last 7 years? I just think it makes Cena look bad, and he's the full time guy.

    There's so many questions and you have to wonder what is going to happen long term. Is Cena on his way down? Are they going to position Lesnar above Cena, and whats the deal with the Rock and the title? A lot of interesting questions


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