Is Brock Lesnar going to step back into the Octagon by the end of 2018? It certainly looks like he will. The latest rumors have Lesnar being invited to UFC 226 on July 7th to challenge the winner of the big Stipe Miocic vs. Daniel Cormier heavyweight championship fight. From there (as the rumor goes, anyway) Lesnar will fight for the belt at UFC 232 on December 29th in Las Vegas.
There’s a few hurdles to jump through for all this to happen. First, Brock will have to agree to the bout, which is less certain than Dana White would have you believe. Lesnar has made it clear he’s looking for the right big money match, to the point where he’s willing to take a beating from the always violent Jon Jones because the dollars add up. Would a fight with Stipe Miocic have the same appeal? There’s also the chance that the WWE will splash Lesnar with cash to keep him out of the cage.
Oh yeah, and there’s also the issue of Lesnar having six months worth of USADA suspension to sit through for his failed 2016 drug test. The clock on his one year suspension stopped the moment Brock left the USADA testing pool to return to pro wrestling, only to restart if the big man re-enters.
That’s left people keeping a very close eye on USADA’s list of testees. But as Bloody Elbow’s Iain Kidd revealed back in December of 2017, USADA has a few situations where they’re willing to hide who exactly is being tested from the public eye. TSN’s Aaron Bronsteter noticed one such case with a new UFC fighter signed through an unaired episode of Dana White’s Lookin’ For A Fight.
I received comment from USADA:— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) June 16, 2018
"Contender 1" is Elias Garcia, who was featured on Dana White: Lookin' for a Fight and his name was withheld to avoid spoiling the show's outcome before it aired. https://t.co/83LMDES9rU
I'm assuming if Lesnar re-entered the testing pool that his name would show up on the reports like everybody else but that's the first time they've ever said they couldn't confirm that information about a fighter retiring or coming out of retirement— Damon Martin (@DamonMartin) June 16, 2018
The UFC has jealously guarded Brock Lesnar news in the past to the point where they briefly uncredentialed MMA reporter Ariel Helwani’s whole team after he beat them to a Lesnar fight announcement by a few hours. We’ve had doubts in the past that USADA would compromise their transparency for the sake of a promotional pop with pro wrestling fans, but now we’re not so sure.
That latest from Damon Martin makes it sound like they’ve decided to be transparent about not being transparent, which means Lesnar could very well be in the testing pool right now and we’d never know.