Hopes of a Brock Lesnar return to Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) came to an abrupt halt earlier today (Tues., April 30, 2019), as UFC President Dana White revealed the former Heavyweight champion is officially retired.
“He told me he’s done, he’s retired,” White told ESPN. “We’re going to move in another direction with Cormier.”
Talks of a big-money fight between Lesnar and Cormier heated up in July 2018 after “DC” knocked out Stipe Miocic at UFC 226 to win the 265-pound title. Shortly after Cormier’s historic win, Lesnar entered the cage and a shoving match ensued (see it again here). Not much happened after, though, as Lesnar was still busy with his World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) commitments, while Cormier went on to defend his strap against Derrick Lewis at UFC 230 (highlights). Lesnar has not competed in mixed martial arts (MMA) since UFC 200 back in 2016, defeating Mark Hunt. The fight, though, was ultimately overturned to a “No Contest” after Lesnar failed two drug tests.
On the bright side, Miocic will get his much-desired rematch against Cormier, as White revealed the promotion is now in the process of booking that do-over. Indeed, Miocic has been on the campaign trail since the crushing defeat to the former “champ-champ.” So much so that he hasn’t competed in the nine months since.
When and where the championship rematch takes place is still unknown. Cormier was adamant he would retire no later than March of this year, but nagging injuries and the uncertainty of Lesnar’s fighting future halted those plans.
If this truly is the end for Lesnar, he ends his MMA career with a 5-3-1 record, losing two of his last three bouts.