Five years ago, the Ultimate Fighting Championship dubbed this month “Brocktober” — filling the schedule of Spike TV with programming centered on their most popular fighter: Brock Lesnar.
The MMA world seemed at Lesnar’s feet at the time. The former pro wrestling star had scored four straight wins and earned the UFC heavyweight championship.
However, just a year later Lesnar would part ways with the UFC, after some hard times in the Octagon and a bout with an intestinal disorder. Following a loss to Alistair Overeem, the former champ announced he was leaving the UFC and eventually returned to World Wrestling Entertainment.
But — what if he hadn’t? What if there had been no diverticulitis?
In an interview Monday with Steve Austin on The Stone Cold Podcast, Lesnar said he’d probably still be with the UFC if his health hadn’t failed him. He also says that recent talk of a MMA comeback, when his contract with WWE was expiring, was no bluff.
“It wasn’t a bluff,” Lesnar said (as transcribed by Damon Martin of Fox Sports). “I felt robbed by diverticulitis. I felt robbed by being sick. I was feeling good and it took me a couple years to start feeling good. I’m at home, I’m working out, my life is great, everything’s in tune, my contract’s coming to an end with WWE. Hey, it’s been a great time — but something’s missing.”
“I was up front and totally honest with the company and told them I’m really thinking of pursuing getting back in the Octagon.”
Lesnar even organized an MMA training camp before making his final decision to return to WWE.
“To this day, I don’t know if I’d be a pro wrestler if I hadn’t gotten sick,” he admits. “I may not be here. I’d still be banging heads.”