Five years ago, Dana White vehemently denied a report questioning whether Brock Lesnar would fight again. Lesnar proved Dana right, as he fought one more time later that year. It would be his last fight in five-and-a-half years, though. The following is our original report with Jamie Penick’s analysis.
A report on Thursday at The MMA Corner cast some doubt on the fighting future of former UFC Heavyweight Champion Brock Lesnar, but on Friday UFC President Dana White vehemently denied there was anything to it.
According to the initial report, sources close to Lesnar claimed that his doctors advised him against continuing his MMA career due to the stress that training and fighting put on his body. With his diverticulitis returning earlier this year and requiring surgery, it’s not far-fetched to believe his doctors could have advised as such. Additionally, the report suggested Lesnar might be warming to the idea of retirement.
However, that contradicts the video Lesnar appeared in last month, where he announced that he was back and talked about a drive to regain the UFC Heavyweight Championship. UFC officials have also stated multiple times that they expect him to return in early 2012.
When asked about the report on Friday during a media conference call announcing the main event of the UFC’s debut on Fox, White was adamant that the report had no legs.
“[It’s] ridiculous,” he said bluntly. “That’s so far from the truth it’s not even funny.”
White said Lesnar is still up hunting and continuing to get himself better, and will likely return to training soon.
Penick’s Analysis: The MMA Corner report reached a few outlets on Thursday, and while there’s certainly a likelihood that Lesnar’s doctors could have advised him against continuing, that never meant it’s what he was going to do, and clearly all the parties involved expect him to continue. White’s blunt response was clear that Lesnar will return, and the video Lesnar was in for his sponsor last month suggested the same. Though he hasn’t yet begun training to return to the cage, if he’s coming back in early 2012 he’ll be getting back in there soon enough.
[Dana White art by Cory Gould (c) MMATorch.com]