After retiring from the sport of MMA following a first round TKO loss to Alistair Overeem in December of 2011, Brock Lesnar — a little over three years later — has officially announced that he won’t be returning to the UFC, and that he’s done with the sport of MMA altogether.
While one man — UFC President Dana White — may not be happy with the fact that the biggest pay-per-view draw in the history of the UFC has officially hung up the gloves, he certainly understands that it’s Lesnar’s decision to not return to the octagon.
“I’m happy for him. He was always a stand-up guy. I knew about this three hours ago. He called us and let us know. From what I understand Vince [McMahon] made him a deal that he couldn’t refuse, which is awesome. I’m happy to hear that. I’m happy for both of them.”
“This is a sport where you’ve got to be all in. You’ve got to be like McGregor and Aldo. Brock had a really good stint here. He did some amazing things and it was fun to have him.”
Lesnar admitted that while he was training for a possible return to the UFC, he felt good, but he also felt that he was lacking something mentally. He also added that he turned down an offer from the UFC that was worth twice as much as WWE was offering him.
“Lorenzo [Fertitta] said to me, ‘Can we sharpen our pencil? Can we double it’?’ I said, ‘It’s not about that. I’m calling you to tell you where my heart is, and it’s not about the money.’”
“And then in the back of my mind, I’m thinking, ‘Well, yeah, it is about the money, but I don’t have to beat myself up for it.’ To prepare for another MMA fight, we’re talking 16, 18 weeks of pure hell, and then the cage door shuts and it’s on.”
Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer reported yesterday that Lesnar’s wife, family, and friends played a huge role in Lesnar deciding to close the door on his MMA career, as none of them wanted him to fight again.
Lesnar is currently the hottest thing going in WWE, and is the WWE World Heavyweight Champion. He is set to main-event at this Sunday’s WrestleMania in Santa Clara, California, where he’ll defend his WWE Title against young, up and comer Roman Reigns, and now that Lesnar has officially decided to stay with WWE, there’s a chance that he could remain the WWE Champion beyond this Sunday.
[Image via Fighting Insider]