09-08-2012, 09:54 AM
Status: Leben 'em dead and maimed
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: BC, Canada
| | Paul Heyman backs Brock Lesnar as UFC Hall of Famer, doubts return to octagon
Paul Heyman backs Brock Lesnar as UFC Hall of Famer, doubts return to octagon
Paul Heyman backs Brock Lesnar as UFC Hall of Famer, doubts return to octagon | MMAjunkie.com
"Of course he is [a UFC Hall of Famer]," Heyman told MMAjunkie.com (UFC blog for UFC news, UFC rumors, fighter interviews and event previews/recaps | MMAjunkie.com). "Listen, here's the thing: Look at the three that he lost to, number one. Number two, what if Brock Lesnar did what everyone else did and said, 'Feed me a guy every other month for three years so I'll get six victories a year. I'll be 18-0 before you put me in there with a Frank Mir, a former UFC heavyweight champion, or Randy Couture and the legends of legends in UFC.'" |
"But he didn't do that. He walked in and said give me your best."
The case for Lesnar's hall of fame status is his four-fight UFC win streak – a streak he began with a 1-1 record – amassed in less than two years. It accounts for four of five career wins (and all his UFC victories). Lesnar is tied with Couture, the man he defeated for the belt at UFC 91 in November 2008, and Tim Sylvia for the UFC heavyweight record for title defenses (two). He first retained versus former UFC champion Mir, who holds the most victories in UFC heavyweight history. Then Lesnar submitted undefeated challenger Shane Carwin in the second round at UFC 116's mega-sized showdown in July 2010 to prove himself undisputed. Carwin's 4XL gloves nearly finished Lesnar in the first, but Lesnar persevered to emerge victorious to mirror his out-of-cage comeback from a grave diverticulitis scare.
"You saw the speed, the size and improvement in every fight, and then this disease took everything away from him," said Heyman, noting Lesnar's personal battle demonstrated his championship qualities best in his three-year UFC stint. "You can see just how fragile an athlete's life is and why athletes need to make so much money as fast as they can and never say, 'I have 15 years on the contract.' Because they don't have 15 years on the contract. You have today on the contract because if you get injured today, tomorrow ain't gonna happen."
Lesnar walked off the street and took the UFC title, Heyman asserted. That alludes to Lesnar essentially being an individual-discipline fighter – like a futuristic throwback wrestle-only athlete – in an era of well-rounded, complete combatants. Taking the trial-by-fire road less traveled through champions started with a loss to Frank Mir in his UFC debut at UFC 81 in February 2008. Less than 12 months later, he was champion. His career ended with back-to-back defeats to Cain Velasquez, who snatched the UFC belt from Lesnar in October 2010, and K-1/Strikeforce/DREAM titleholder Alistair Overeem in December 2011. Lesnar succumbed to strikes in the first round in the main event.
"Five and three?" asked Heyman of Lesnar's record. "But look at the five – and look at the three."
Lesnar's name is currently attached to WWE headlining duties; however, his name is synonymous with UFC speculation. UFC President Dana White acknowledged on FUEL TV's "UFC Tonight" that an early summer meeting with Lesnar was fruitless. An octagon return for Lesnar, the man Heyman considers a sure-fire UFC hall of famer, is unlikely according to his mouthpiece.
"I think Dana White would love to have Brock Lesnar back," he said. "I think Lorenzo Fertitta would love to have Brock Lesnar back. Does Brock Lesnar want to go back? I don't think Brock has anything to prove in the UFC anymore. He's 35 years old. He made a lot of money in the UFC.
"His house and his farms and his cars and everything that he owns is paid for. Why would he go in and risk injury and concussions and risk any kind of physical damage when he doesn't need to? That's the thing you have to understand. How hungry can a fighter be when he has millions and millions of dollars in the bank? What's there for him to gain? Another run as UFC heavyweight champion? Why would he do that?"
Championship glory is matched with the appropriate dollars for a draw such as Lesnar. December's title rematch between champion Junior Dos Santos and Velasquez is a fight Lesnar has ties to should he consider reentering the UFC fold. Lesnar was scheduled to meet Dos Santos after coaching opposite each other on "The Ultimate Fighter 13" in 2011. Velasquez is one of two fighters on his ledger he never avenged.
Still, Heyman's question resonates, especially with Lesnar's career prestige resting on a spectacular first run – a one-of-a-kind stint requiring real mettle to attempt to replicate or surpass. The success of Brock Lesnar stems from his intrigue as a freak competitor – from Minnesota's NCAA Division I national champion heavyweight wrestler in 2000 to conquering WWE's scripted world then the UFC's reality fighting with unreal ascent.
"He's the baddest dude on the planet," Heyman said of Lesnar's lasting impression on his crossed audiences, "and he wasn't shy about letting people know about that."
Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.