Brock Edward Lesnar (July 12, 1977) is an American professional wrestler and former mixed martial artist, amateur wrestler and professional American football player signed with the WWE currently performing on the Raw brand as the current WWE Universal Champion in his first reign.
After his successful amateur wrestling career at Bismarck State College and the University of Minnesota, Lesnar signed with WWE (then the World Wrestling Federation) in 2000. He was assigned to its developmental promotion Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW), where he was a three-time OVW Southern Tag Team Champion with Shelton Benjamin. After debuting on WWE's main roster in 2002, he won the WWE Championship on three separate occasions with victories over The Rock and Kurt Angle (twice). Lesnar won the then WWE Undisputed Championship five months after his main roster debut at the age of 25, becoming the youngest champion in the title's history. He was also the 2002 King of the Ring and the 2003 Royal Rumble winner, making him the youngest King of the Ring and Royal Rumble winner as well. Following his match with Goldberg at WrestleMania XX, Lesnar left the WWE and pursued a career in the National Football League (NFL). He was named a defensive tackle for the Minnesota Vikings, but was cut prior to the start of the 2004–2005 season. In 2005, Lesnar returned to professional wrestling and signed with New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW), where he won the IWGP Heavyweight Championship in his first match. After a contractual dispute with NJPW, he also wrestled as IWGP Heavyweight Champion in the Inoki Genome Federation (IGF).
In 2006, Lesnar pursued a career in mixed martial arts (MMA), as he signed with Hero's and won his first fight, against Min-Soo Kim, in June 2007. He then signed with the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) the following October. Lesnar lost in his UFC debut against Frank Mir and then won his second fight against Heath Herring. In November 2008, Lesnar defeated Randy Couture to become the UFC Heavyweight Champion. Shortly after a successful title defense in a rematch with Mir, Lesnar was sidelined due to diverticulitis. He would return at UFC 116 to defeat Interim UFC Heavyweight Champion Shane Carwin and unify the heavyweight championships, becoming the Undisputed Heavyweight Champion. Lesnar then lost the championship to Cain Velasquez at UFC 121. In 2011, he was once again sidelined due to diverticulitis and underwent surgery. Lesnar returned at UFC 141 in December, losing to Alistair Overeem and promptly retiring from MMA. Lesnar was a box office sensation in UFC, as he took part in a few of the best selling pay-per-views events in UFC history, including UFC 100 and UFC 116.
In April 2012, Lesnar once again returned to professional wrestling, rejoining WWE after an eight-year hiatus. Two years later, at WrestleMania XXX, Lesnar defeated The Undertaker to end his undefeated streak at WrestleMania. He achieved world champion status twice since his return, having won the then WWE World Heavyweight Championship in 2014 and the WWE Universal Championship in 2017. Lesnar has been managed by Paul Heyman throughout the majority of his professional wrestling career.
In June 2016, at UFC 199, the UFC announced that Lesnar would return to MMA to fight at UFC 200. His opponent was later revealed to be Mark Hunt. Lesnar would defeat Hunt via unanimous decision. However, after Lesnar tested positive for clomiphene, a banned substance on the UFC's anti-doping policy, he was suspended from competing in the UFC by the Nevada State Athletic Commission for one year, fined $250,000 and his victory over Hunt was overturned to a no-contest. Lesnar then retired from MMA for a second time in 2017.
Lesnar is a five-time world champion in WWE, a one-time UFC Heavyweight Champion and a one-time NCAA Heavyweight Wrestling Champion. He has headlined numerous pay-per-view events for both the WWE and UFC, including WrestleMania XIX, WrestleMania 31, UFC 100 and UFC 116. In 2015, an ESPN.com article referred to Lesnar as "the most accomplished athlete in professional wrestling history".
Brock Lesnar was born in Webster, South Dakota. He attended Webster High School in Webster, where he had a wrestling record of 33-0-0 in his senior year. Lesnar admits he graduated last of 54 students in his class. Lesnar later attended the University of Minnesota on a full wrestling scholarship for his junior and senior years of college; his roommate was fellow professional wrestler Shelton Benjamin who also served as Lesnar's assistant coach. Lesnar won the 2000 NCAA wrestling championship as a heavyweight after placing second in 1999.
Prior to joining the Minnesota Golden Gophers, Lesnar also wrestled at Bismarck State College in Bismarck, North Dakota. Lesnar finished his amateur career as a two-time NJCAA All-American, 1998 NJCAA Heavyweight Champion, two-time NCAA All-American, two-time Big Ten Conference Champion, and the 2000 NCAA heavyweight champion with a record of 106–5 overall in four years of college.
Professional wrestling career
World Wrestling Federation / Entertainment (2002–2004)
Training and debut (2000–2002)
In 2000, after leaving college, Lesnar signed up with the World Wrestling Federation. He was sent to its developmental territory, Ohio Valley Wrestling. There, he formed a tag team known as "The Minnesota Stretching Crew" with his former college roommate, Shelton Benjamin. Lesnar and Benjamin won the OVW Southern Tag Team Championship on three occasions. He wrestled several dark matches in 2001 and 2002 before being called up to the main roster.
Lesnar debuted on WWF television on the March 18, 2002 episode of Raw, the night after WrestleMania X8, coming through the crowd and attacking Al Snow, Maven, and Spike Dudley during the course of a match. He was accompanied by Paul Heyman, who was seen giving instructions to Lesnar. When the brand extension was introduced in the WWF, Lesnar was drafted to the Raw brand. Later, Heyman was confirmed to be Lesnar's agent and gave Lesnar the nickname "The Next Big Thing". Brock's first feud was with the Hardy Boyz. Lesnar and Jeff Hardy squared off at Backlash in Lesnar's first official televised match. He won the match by knockout. The next night on Raw Lesnar faced off against Matt Hardy, defeating him in the same fashion. At Judgment Day, Lesnar once again gained the upper hand on the Hardy Boyz before tagging his partner, Heyman, in to make the pin.
Main event status (2002–2003)
In June 2002, Lesnar won the King of the Ring tournament, defeating Rob Van Dam in the final round. This victory earned him a shot at the WWE Undisputed Championship at SummerSlam. On July 22, Lesnar joined the SmackDown! brand. After a quick feud with Hollywood Hulk Hogan in August 2002, Lesnar began feuding with the Undisputed Champion The Rock. At the main event of SummerSlam, Lesnar defeated The Rock to become the WWE Undisputed Champion. With his victory at age 25, Lesnar became the youngest WWE Champion in history (a record that was previously held by The Rock and stands to date). With the WWE Undisputed Championship being defended on both brands, Raw General Manager Eric Bischoff expected Lesnar to be able to return to Raw the following night. However, SmackDown General Manager Stephanie McMahon announced that Lesnar's contract only required him to defend the title on SmackDown!, forcing Bischoff to establish a new world championship for his brand. With the new World Heavyweight Championship on the Raw brand, the now disputed WWE Undisputed Championship simply became known as the WWE Championship.
Lesnar's rapid rise to the top of WWE in 2002 led to a feud with The Undertaker, which involved a match at Unforgiven. It ended in a double disqualification leading to Lesnar retaining the title. The next month, at No Mercy, he faced The Undertaker again, this time in a Hell in a Cell match. Leading up to the match, Lesnar broke the Undertaker's hand with a propane tank. Despite Heyman begging McMahon not to let The Undertaker use his cast as a weapon, the request was denied and the match went on as planned. In a match that saw both wrestlers and even Heyman covered in blood, it ended when Lesnar reversed an attempted Tombstone piledriver into his finishing F-5 maneuver for the win. Six days after his Hell in a Cell match with The Undertaker, Lesnar successfully retained his WWE title in a Handicap match with Heyman at the Rebellion pay-per-view against Edge.
Lesnar's next opponent was The Big Show. Heyman was convinced more than anyone that Lesnar could not win, trying to talk him out of defending the title. Lesnar refused and lost the championship in Madison Square Garden at the Survivor Series pay-per-view to Big Show, Lesnar's first pinfall loss in WWE. When the champion tried to pin the 500-pounder following an F-5, he was betrayed by Heyman who pulled the referee out of the ring allowing Big Show to capitalize and win the title. As a result, Lesnar became a fan favorite. Following Survivor Series, Heyman made it clear that Lesnar would not get a rematch, even going so far as to sneak a special clause in his contract. At the Royal Rumble event in January 2003, Lesnar defeated The Big Show in a qualification match. Lesnar later entered the Rumble as the No.29 entrant where he eventually won by eliminating The Undertaker.
After winning the Royal Rumble match, Lesnar spent the next two months in a scripted feud with WWE champion Kurt Angle, who Lesnar had helped win the title and who was represented by Paul Heyman. Angle had Heyman, and Team Angle (Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas) behind him, but Lesnar overcame these opponents. Lesnar regained the WWE Championship in the main event of WrestleMania XIX. Toward the end of the match, he botched a shooting star press; despite having landed the move successfully several times in OVW, in this match he overestimated the distance he was capable of jumping for the move and under-rotated, slamming his head into Angle's side and ribcage. This stunned Lesnar and forced Angle to improvise the finish of the match. Lesnar suffered a severe concussion from the botched move.
Following WrestleMania, John Cena began targeting Lesnar for almost ending his career (by using the F-5 to propel his leg into a ring post) after a previous match between the two. This led to Cena receiving a title match at Backlash in which Lesnar successfully retained the title. Earlier at the Backlash pay-per-view, Big Show had injured Rey Mysterio badly, resulting in Mysterio being carried out on a stretcher. This injury led to Lesnar renewing his feud with Big Show, which led to a Stretcher match at Judgment Day for the title. Lesnar successfully retained his title with help from Rey Mysterio and a forklift. During the scripted rivalry, on SmackDown!, Lesnar lifted Big Show over in a Superplex, which caused the ring to collapse on impact. At Vengeance, Lesnar lost his title to Kurt Angle in a No Disqualification Triple Threat match that involved Big Show.
Prior to SummerSlam, Lesnar became a villain by betraying Kurt Angle, leading to a rematch at the event. Lesnar lost to Angle when Angle made Lesnar tap out to the ankle lock. A second rematch between Lesnar and Angle, an Iron Man match, was later held on an episode of SmackDown!. Lesnar defeated Angle in a match that was said as one of the best in SmackDown! history. Angle slapped on the ankle lock with a few seconds remaining but Lesnar did not tap. Lesnar won with five falls to Angle's four, making him a three-time WWE Champion. Lesnar's first challenger for his newly won title was The Undertaker. Lesnar had previously cost Undertaker the title in a match against then-champion Kurt Angle, which granted him a shot at Lesnar's title. At No Mercy, Lesnar defeated Undertaker in a Biker Chain match. Lesnar realigned himself with Paul Heyman after Heyman became General Manager of SmackDown! and formed Team Lesnar with Big Show, Matt Morgan, A-Train, and Nathan Jones for a 10-man Survivor Series match at Survivor Series. In the climax of the match, Chris Benoit became the second person to make Lesnar tap out. Lesnar faced Benoit in a singles bout two weeks later for the WWE Championship on SmackDown!, where Lesnar won after Benoit passed out to Lesnar's debuting Brock Lock submission hold.
Feuding with Goldberg and departure (2003–2004)
The Survivor Series event marked the first time Lesnar met Goldberg from the Raw brand, a man to whom Lesnar had been compared due to their similar physiques and undefeated streaks in wrestling. Lesnar claimed in a backstage interview that he could beat anybody in the world, leading to Goldberg interrupting the interview and introducing himself to Lesnar, shaking hands with him before leaving with a staredown. Lesnar followed this rivalry with a feud involving Hardcore Holly. In the storyline, Holly wanted revenge on Lesnar for legitimately injuring his neck during a previous match between the two in 2002 which left Holly in need of neck surgery and out of action for a year. At the Royal Rumble in 2004, Lesnar defeated Holly to retain the WWE Championship. Later in the Royal Rumble match, Lesnar attacked Goldberg and delivered an F-5, enabling Kurt Angle to eliminate him.
In February, Lesnar faced Eddie Guerrero for the title at No Way Out. During the match, Goldberg interfered in the match, allowing Guerrero to capitalize and pin Lesnar after a frog splash to win the WWE Championship. The match set up an interbrand match for WrestleMania XX between Lesnar and Goldberg. During the feud with Goldberg, Lesnar was at odds with Stone Cold Steve Austin, who was shown suggesting to Goldberg that he attack Lesnar at No Way Out. When Lesnar attacked Austin on Raw and stole his four-wheeler, Austin was inserted as the special guest referee for the Wrestlemania match. Behind the scenes, it was widely known that the match would be Goldberg's last in WWE. Only a week before Wrestlemania, however, rumors surfaced that Lesnar, too, was leaving in order to pursue a career in the National Football League. As a result, Lesnar's match with Goldberg became a fiasco as the fans at Madison Square Garden jeered and heckled both wrestlers vociferously. Goldberg gained victory after delivering a spear to Lesnar and both men subsequently received Stone Cold Stunners from Austin.
New Japan Pro Wrestling (2005–2006)
On October 8, 2005, Lesnar won the IWGP Heavyweight Championship in a three-way match at a New Japan Pro Wrestling show in the Tokyo Dome, which included the then-champion Kazuyuki Fujita and Masahiro Chono. He won the match by pinning Masahiro Chono after an F-5, which he had renamed the Verdict, since WWE owns the trademark on the F-5 name. After the match, he stated that this name was referring to his lawsuit against WWE. The match was his first pro wrestling match since leaving WWE. Lesnar is one of the few American wrestlers to have held this title.
On December 6, WWE filed a motion for a temporary restraining order to prevent Lesnar from continuing to work with NJPW, but the court did not grant it, and thus Lesnar had two non-title victories against Manabu Nakanishi and Yuji Nagata. Lesnar successfully defended his championship on January 4, 2006, against former champion Shinsuke Nakamura. On January 13, WWE once again filed an injunction against Lesnar to stop him from defending the IWGP Heavyweight Championship on March 19. Evidently this was not enforced (nor granted), as he went on to have a tag team match with Shinsuke Nakamura against Akebono and Riki Chōshū at the Sumo Hall on February 19, which was won after a Verdict to Chōshū. On March 19, at the Sumo Hall, Lesnar retained his championship against former Sumo Wrestling Grand Champion Akebono when Lesnar hit him with the championship belt and a DDT. Lesnar went on to successfully defend his title against the winner of the New Japan Cup, Giant Bernard, on May 3, 2006, in Fukuoka. This was the first American vs. American title match in NJPW since Vader vs. Stan Hansen in 1990.
On July 15, 2006, New Japan Pro Wrestling announced that Brock Lesnar had been stripped of the IWGP Heavyweight Championship as he would no longer be returning to defend the title due to "visa issues." A tournament was held on July 16 to determine the new champion, which was won by Hiroshi Tanahashi, the man Lesnar was originally scheduled to face. Lesnar continued to possess the physical IWGP Championship belt until late June 2007.
Approximately one year later, on June 29, 2007, Lesnar defended his IWGP Heavyweight Championship (IGF promoter Antonio Inoki had stated he still viewed Lesnar as the "proper" IWGP Champion, as he was never defeated for the title) against TNA World Heavyweight Champion Kurt Angle in a champion versus champion match. Angle defeated Lesnar with the Ankle lock to win the IWGP Heavyweight Championship as recognized by IGF and TNA. and challenged him to an MMA fight. This was Lesnar's last match as a professional wrestler until 2012.
Lesnar had previously signed a no-compete clause in order to be released from his contract with WWE, which prohibited him from working for any other sports entertainment or mixed martial arts companies before June 2010. Lesnar had anticipated leaving wrestling entirely, but his inability to secure a career in professional football led to him challenging this ruling in court. WWE responded by demanding damages as a result of Lesnar allegedly breaching the agreement by appearing at a New Japan Pro Wrestling show in 2004. In July 2005, the two sides dropped their claims and entered negotiations to renew their relationship. WWE had offered Lesnar a contract, but on August 2, 2005, WWE's official website reported that Lesnar had withdrawn from any involvement with the company. The lawsuit was then entered into settlement on September 21, but talks broke down.
On January 14, 2006, Judge Christopher Droney stated that unless WWE gave him a good argument between then and January 25, he would rule in favor of Brock Lesnar, giving him a summary judgment. This would have enabled Lesnar to work anywhere he wanted immediately. WWE was later granted a deadline postponement. On April 24, World Wrestling Entertainment announced on their official website, WWE.com, that both parties had mutually come to a settlement and on June 12, a federal judge dismissed Lesnar's lawsuit against WWE after both parties requested for the case to be dismissed.
Return to WWE
Ending the Streak (2012–2014)
Lesnar returned to WWE on April 2, 2012 on Raw, as a heel, by confronting and delivering an F-5 to John Cena. The following week on Raw, General Manager John Laurinaitis revealed that he signed Lesnar to bring "legitimacy" back to the WWE and become the "new face of the WWE". Laurinaitis also announced that Lesnar would face Cena at Extreme Rules with the Extreme Rules stipulation later added to the match. At Extreme Rules on April 29, Lesnar lost to Cena despite dominating the match.
The following night on Raw, WWE's Chief Operating Officer Triple H refused to give in to Lesnar's unreasonable contract demands (which included being given his own personal jet and having Raw renamed to Monday Night Raw Starring Brock Lesnar), resulting in Lesnar attacking him and breaking his arm with a kimura lock in storyline. The next week on Raw, Paul Heyman made his return as Lesnar's legal representative and claimed that Lesnar was quitting WWE. He later announced a lawsuit against WWE for breach of contract. At No Way Out in June, Triple H challenged Lesnar (who was not present) to a match at SummerSlam, which Lesnar refused. Stephanie McMahon would later goad Heyman into accepting the match on Lesnar's behalf on July 23 at Raw 1000. At SummerSlam on August 19, Lesnar defeated Triple H by submission after once again breaking his arm in storyline. The following night on Raw, Lesnar declared himself the new "King of Kings" and said that he would depart from WWE after his victory over Triple H, stating that he had conquered everything in the company.
Lesnar returned on the January 28, 2013 episode of Raw, confronting Mr. McMahon who was about to fire Heyman, and despite Heyman's pleas, Lesnar attacked McMahon with an F-5, breaking McMahon's pelvis in storyline. The following week during The Miz's Miz TV talk show, Raw Managing Supervisor Vickie Guerrero revealed herself as the one who signed Lesnar to a new contract to impress McMahon. On the February 25 episode of Raw, Lesnar once again attempted to attack McMahon, only to get into a brawl with the returning Triple H, which resulted in Lesnar legitimately having his head split open and requiring eighteen stitches. The following week on Raw, Triple H issued a challenge to Lesnar, requesting a rematch with him at WrestleMania 29, which Lesnar accepted but only after Triple signed a contract and Lesnar named the stipulation. After Triple H signed the contract and assaulted Heyman, the stipulation was revealed as No Holds Barred with Triple H's career on the line. At WrestleMania 29 on April 7, Lesnar lost to Triple H after a Pedigree onto the steel steps. On the April 15 episode of Raw, Lesnar attacked 3MB (Heath Slater, Drew McIntyre, and Jinder Mahal) before Heyman challenged Triple H to face Lesnar in a steel cage match at Extreme Rules, which Triple H accepted the following week. At Extreme Rules on May 19, after interference from Heyman, Lesnar defeated Triple H to ended their feud. Lesnar returned on the June 17 episode of Raw, attacking Heyman's fellow client CM Punk with an F-5. Despite the accusations from Punk, Heyman claimed that he was not behind Lesnar's attack on him. However, Heyman turned on Punk in July, and claimed that Punk could not beat Lesnar, which led to Lesnar making his return and attacking Punk on the July 15 episode of Raw. The following week on Raw, Punk challenged Lesnar to a match at SummerSlam on August 18, where Lesnar defeated Punk in a no disqualification match.
On the December 30 episode of Raw, Lesnar returned with Heyman to announce his intentions to challenge the winner of the upcoming WWE World Heavyweight Championship match between Randy Orton and John Cena at the Royal Rumble. Lesnar then dared any wrestler who disapproved of that notion to challenge him, which was answered by Mark Henry, and a brawl would ensue, ending with Lesnar delivering an F-5 to Henry. The following week on Raw, Henry challenged Lesnar again, only to have Lesnar dislocate his elbow with the Kimura lock in storyline, which led Big Show to come out afterwards to confront Lesnar, thus starting a feud which was settled at the Royal Rumble on January 26, 2014, where Lesnar defeated Show after attacking him with a steel chair before the match began. On the February 24 episode of Raw, after Heyman stated that Lesnar had requested a match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at WrestleMania XXX, instead receiving an open contract to face anyone else of his choosing, The Undertaker then returned and attacked Lesnar with a chokeslam through a table, setting up their match at WrestleMania XXX. On April 6, Lesnar defeated Undertaker after executing three F-5s, ending his undefeated WrestleMania streak at 21, a feat that was described by Sports Illustrated as being "the most shocking result since the Montreal Screwjob".
WWE World Heavyweight Champion (2014–2016)
On the July 21 episode of Raw, Triple H announced that Lesnar would face John Cena at SummerSlam for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. At SummerSlam on August 17, Lesnar defeated Cena to become the WWE World Heavyweight Champion and during the match he delivered sixteen suplexes (most of which were German suplexes) and two F-5s to Cena, who barely managed any offense. On the August 19 episode of Main Event, Triple H announced that Cena was invoking his championship rematch clause against Lesnar at Night of Champions on September 21, where Lesnar was disqualified due to Seth Rollins interfering, but retained his championship, which could not be lost via disqualification. Later in the year, after Rollins reunited with The Authority, he was added to Lesnar and Cena's championship match at the Royal Rumble on January 25, 2015, making it a triple threat match, which Lesnar won despite suffering a storyline broken rib during the match.
Lesnar's next challenger was Roman Reigns, who won the Royal Rumble match to earn the right to face Lesnar for the title at WrestleMania 31 on March 29. During his main event match against Reigns, Lesnar delivered multiple suplexes and was heard exclaiming, "Suplex City, bitch!" and thereafter "Suplex City" became one of his signature catchphrases and merchandise motifs. After Lesnar and Reigns traded a few false finishes, Rollins cashed in his Money in the Bank contract while the match was in progress, thus making it a triple threat; Rollins then pinned Reigns to win the title. The following night on Raw, Lesnar tried to invoke his rematch clause and subsequently attacked commentators Booker T, John "Bradshaw" Layfield and Michael Cole, as well as a cameraman after Rollins refused the rematch, which led to Stephanie McMahon suspending Lesnar indefinitely in storyline.
Lesnar returned on the June 15 episode of Raw, being chosen by The Authority as the number one contender to Rollins' WWE World Heavyweight Championship at Battleground. On July 4, Lesnar made his first non-televised wrestling appearance for WWE since his 2012 return, defeating Kofi Kingston at The Beast in the East live event in Tokyo in a quick winning effort; he also delivered F-5s to Kingston's New Day stablemates Big E and Xavier Woods after the match. At Battleground on July 19, Lesnar dominated Rollins, delivering thirteen suplexes, but mid-pinfall, after performing an F-5, he was attacked by The Undertaker (who incapacitated Lesnar with a chokeslam and two Tombstone Piledrivers), thus endind the match with Lesnar winning by disqualification and Rollins retaining the championship. The following night on Raw, Undertaker explained that he had attacked Lesnar not for ending his WrestleMania streak, but rather for Lesnar allowing Heyman to constantly taunt Undertaker about it, which led to the two brawling throughout the arena and a WrestleMania rematch being scheduled for SummerSlam on August 18, where Undertaker would controversially defeat Lesnar; during the match, Undertaker submitted to a Kimura lock by Lesnar and the timekeeper rang the bell but the referee did not see the submission and demanded that the match continue, which saw Undertaker then attack Lesnar with a low blow and Lesnar passed out to Hell's Gate. The following night on Raw, Lesnar and Heyman challenged Undertaker to an immediate rematch, only to be confronted by Bo Dallas (who mocked Lesnar about his defeat), whom Lesnar then responded by delivering three German suplexes and an F-5 to Dallas. During Night of Champions on September 20, it was announced that Lesnar would face The Undertaker at Hell in a Cell on October25, where Lesnar defeated The Undertaker after a low blow and F-5 onto the exposed ring floor, ending their feud. The match was later voted "Match of the Year" during the 2015 Slammy Awards.
On the January 11, 2016 episode of Raw, Lesnar returned, attacking The New Day, The League of Nations (Sheamus, King Barrett, Rusev and Alberto Del Rio) and Kevin Owens, before giving an F-5 to Roman Reigns. The following week on Raw, Lesnar would brawl with Reigns until they were both attacked by The Wyatt Family. At the Royal Rumble on January 24, Lesnar was the 23rd entrant, eliminating four competitors before being eliminated by Bray Wyatt with help from the rest of The Wyatt Family. On the January 25 episode of Raw, Stephanie McMahon announced that the main event of Fastlane would be a triple threat match between Lesnar, Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose to determine who would face Triple H for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at WrestleMania 32. In the following weeks, Lesnar would be continuously provoked by Ambrose, with Reigns saving him from the subsequent attacks by Lesnar. At Fastlane on February 21, Lesnar dominated most of the match before he was put through two broadcast tables by Ambrose and Reigns; he would ultimately lose the match after Reigns pinned Ambrose. Because of this, Lesnar attacked Ambrose in the parking lot as he was arriving at the arena. Ambrose would then return later in the night, having hijacked an ambulance, and he challenged Lesnar to a No Holds Barred Street Fight match at WrestleMania 32 on April 3, where Lesnar defeated Ambrose after an F-5 onto a pile of chairs.
On the July 7 episode of SmackDown, it was announced that Lesnar would be facing Randy Orton at SummerSlam, who himself had just returned to WWE from injury. Two days later on July 9, WWE allowed Lesnar to have a one-off fight for UFC 200. Lesnar failed two of his drug tests for this fight, but he was not suspended by WWE because he is not a full-time performer. On July 19 at the 2016 WWE draft, Lesnar was the No. 5 draft pick for the Raw brand. Reports claimed that he would have been No. 1 had he not failed his UFC drug tests. Orton was drafted to SmackDown, thus making their match an interbrand match, while WWE billed their face-off as a match fifteen years in the making. Along with Heyman, Lesnar made his return to Raw on August 1 (his first appearance on WWE programming since WrestleMania 32), but during his segment Orton appeared and delivered an RKO to Lesnar. Lesnar then attacked Orton during his match the following night on SmackDown Live, delivering an F-5 to Orton. At SummerSlam on August 21, Lesnar defeated Orton by technical knockout after a series of elbows, leaving Orton with a forehead wound which required ten staples. Much to Shane McMahon's dismay, Lesnar would later deliver an F-5 to Shane himself. The end made many people believe Lesnar had gone off script due to the severity of Orton's head wound. Lesnar was later storyline fined $500 for delivering an F-5 to SmackDown Commissioner Shane McMahon and his assault on Orton. On September 24 at a house show in Chicago, Illinois, Lesnar defeated Orton in a no disqualification rematch, with the match being billed as a Suplex City death match.
WWE Universal Champion (2016–present)
On the October 10 episode of Raw, Heyman, on Lesnar's behalf, challenged Goldberg to a fight after the pair had been feuding for several months through social media and during promotional work for the WWE 2K17 video game, which featured Lesnar as the cover star and Goldberg as the pre-order bonus. Heyman stated that Goldberg was the one blemish on Lesnar's WWE career, as Goldberg had defeated Lesnar at WrestleMania XX in 2004. On the October 17 episode of Raw, Goldberg returned to the WWE after a twelve-year absence and accepted Lesnar's request for a fight, while Lesnar would go on to address Goldberg on the October 24 episode of Raw, with their match being confirmed for Survivor Series. On the final Raw before Survivor Series, Lesnar and Goldberg came face to face for the first time in twelve years, resulting in a brawl with security after Heyman insulted Goldberg's family. On November 20 at Survivor Series, Lesnar lost to Goldberg who caught him off guard with two consecutive spears and a Jackhammer, with the match ending via pinfall in just 1 minute and 26 seconds. This was the first time in three years that Lesnar was pinned. The next night on Raw, Goldberg declared himself the first entrant in the 2017 Royal Rumble match. The following week on Raw, Heyman addressed the Survivor Series match, stating that they underestimated Goldberg and that the match was a humiliation and embarrassment for him and Lesnar, who would also be in the Royal Rumble as he has something to prove. Lesnar returned on the January 16 episode of Raw to confront his fellow Royal Rumble participants, annihilating Sami Zayn and Seth Rollins, while also delivering an F-5 to Roman Reigns. Lesnar appeared once more on the January 23 episode of Raw to confront Goldberg, but both were confronted by The Undertaker. At the Royal Rumble on January 29, Lesnar entered at number 26 and went on to eliminate Enzo Amore, Dean Ambrose and Dolph Ziggler before confronting Goldberg, who entered at number 28 and quickly eliminated Lesnar after hitting a spear. The following night on Raw, Lesnar challenged Goldberg for a final match at WrestleMania 33. On the February 6 episode of Raw, Goldberg would accept Lesnar's challenge whilst also being named number one contender for Kevin Owens' WWE Universal Championship, which he won at Fastlane on March 5 and thus turning his match with Lesnar into a title match. At WrestleMania 33 on April 3, after being hit with three spears, Lesnar became the first men to legitimately kicking-out from Goldberg's Jackhammer and would go on to perform ten German suplexes and an F-5 to defeat Golberg for the first time in his career and giving him his first clean single loss. With the win, Lensar also became the third man (after John Cena and The Undertaker) to win two world tiles at WrestleMania and the first man to win both the WWE Championship and the WWE Universal Championship, his fifth world title in WWE.
On April 28, 2006, Lesnar appeared inside the ring after the final match of K-1 Hero's Las Vegas and announced his intent to join the MMA promotion. He trained with Minnesota Martial Arts Academy under Greg Nelson, and University of Minnesota Assistant Head wrestling coach Marty Morgan. Brock Lesnar announced on August 12 in Las Vegas that he had signed a deal with the K-1 promotion. His first fight was scheduled for June 2, 2007, on the K-1 Dynamite!! USA show against Choi Hong-man of Korea. However, prior to the match, Choi Hong-Man was replaced by Min Soo Kim. Lesnar submitted Min Soo Kim due to strikes in 1 minute 9 seconds of the first round to win his first official MMA match.
Ultimate Fighting Championship (2008–2011)
During UFC 77, it was announced that Brock Lesnar had reached a deal to fight with the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). On February 2, 2008, Lesnar made his debut with the promotion in an event titled UFC 81:Breaking Point against former UFC Heavyweight Champion, Frank Mir. Lesnar secured an early takedown, but was deducted a point for hitting Mir on the back of the head. Following another takedown by Lesnar, Mir managed to secure a kneebar and force a submission at 1:30 of the first round. Due to the large size of his hands, Lesnar was wearing 4XL gloves for the fight, making him the second man in Nevada's combat sports history to wear such gloves after Choi Hong-man. At UFC 82, it was announced that former UFC Heavyweight Champion and UFC Hall of Fame inductee Mark Coleman would fight Lesnar at UFC 87:Seek and Destroy. Coleman was forced to withdraw from the fight due to a training injury, and Lesnar's opponent was changed to Heath Herring. In the early seconds of the first round, Lesnar dropped Herring with a straight right. For the rest of the fight, Lesnar kept the fight on the ground and went on to win by unanimous decision.
Lesnar's next opponent was Randy Couture for the UFC Heavyweight Championship at UFC 91:Couture vs Lesnar on November 15. Lesnar beat Couture via a technical knockout in Round 2, becoming the UFC Heavyweight Champion.
On December 27, 2008, at UFC 92, Frank Mir defeated Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira for the Interim Heavyweight title and was to face Lesnar for the Undisputed UFC Heavyweight Championship at UFC 98. Immediately after winning the Interim Heavyweight title, Mir found Lesnar in the crowd and shouted at him "You've got my belt."
However, due to a knee injury to Mir, the title unification match with Lesnar that was originally slated to be the UFC 98 main event was postponed. The news broke during the broadcast of UFC 96 that the bout had been cancelled and was replaced by Rashad Evans vs. Lyoto Machida for the UFC Light-Heavyweight Championship." Lesnar won the postponed rematch with Mir at UFC 100 on July 11, 2009, via Knockout after dominating his opponent for the duration of the bout. The win earned Lesnar Beatdown of the Year honors from Sherdog for 2009. It's an award he shares with Anderson Silva after his win over Forrest Griffin. During his post-match celebration, Lesnar flipped off the crowd who had been booing him. He made a disparaging comment about the PPV's primary sponsor Bud Light, claiming they "won't pay me nothin", promoting Coors Light instead. He then stated he might even "get on top of [his] wife" after the show. He would later apologize for his actions in his post-fight press conference, where he held a bottle of Bud Light.
In January 2009, Brock Lesnar signed a supplement endorsement deal with Dymatize Nutrition. A CD containing training footage of Lesnar was included with boxes of Dymatize Xpand and Energized Xpand.
On July 1, 2009, it was reported that the winner of the Shane Carwin vs. Cain Velasquez fight at UFC 104 would face Brock Lesnar in his second title defense on a date yet to be determined; however, the UFC then reconsidered the contendership bout and Lesnar was scheduled to defend his belt against Shane Carwin at UFC 106 on November 21.
On October 26, 2009, it was announced that Lesnar had pulled out of the UFC 106 card in which he was set to face Shane Carwin for the UFC Heavyweight Championship due to an illness. UFC President Dana White said that Brock had been ill for three weeks, claiming he had never been this sick in his life and that it would take him a while to recover; his fight with Carwin was rescheduled for UFC 108 in early 2010. Lesnar initially sought treatment in Canada, but later told reporters that he had received "Third World treatment" from malfunctioning equipment at a hospital in Brandon, Manitoba, and that seeking better medical treatment in the United States saved his life. Lesnar, who describes himself as a conservative and a supporter of the US Republican Party, went on to criticize Canadian-style health care further and said that he shared his experience in an effort to speak "on the behalf of the doctors in the United States that don't want health care reform to happen and neither do I."
On November 4, it was confirmed that Lesnar was suffering from mononucleosis and that his bout with Carwin would have to wait a bit longer, thus the fight for UFC 108 was cancelled. On November 14 at the UFC 105 post-fight conference, Dana stated, "He's not well and he's not going to be getting well anytime soon." and that an interim title match might need to be set up. In addition to mononucleosis, it was revealed that Lesnar was suffering from a serious case of diverticulitis, an intestinal disorder, which would require surgery. After further diagnosis, on November 16 Lesnar underwent surgery to close a perforation in his intestine that had been leaking fecal matter into his abdomen, causing pain, abscesses, and overtaxing his immune system to the point that he contracted mononucleosis. From the level of damage to Lesnar's system, the surgeon estimated that the intestinal condition had been ongoing for around a year.
In January 2010, Lesnar announced on ESPN SportsCenter that he was scheduled to make a return to the UFC in the summer of 2010. A match between Frank Mir and Shane Carwin took place on March 27 at UFC 111 to determine the UFC Interim Heavyweight Champion, and Brock's next opponent. Shane Carwin defeated Frank Mir by KO in the first round, becoming the new Interim Champion. After the fight, Brock came into the ring and stated "It was a good fight, but he's wearing a belt that's a make believe belt, I've got the real championship belt."
Lesnar faced Shane Carwin at UFC 116 to unify the heavyweight titles. After Carwin knocked him down early in the first round, Lesnar survived a ground and pound attack. Early in the second round, Lesnar was able to take Carwin down, attain a full mount, then move into side-control and finish the fight with an arm triangle choke. With the victory, Lesnar again became the Undisputed UFC Heavyweight Champion, earning his first UFC Submission Of The Night and giving Carwin his first loss.
Losing the title
Lesnar's next defense was against undefeated top contender Cain Velasquez on October 23, 2010, at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California at UFC 121. Dana White announced via SportsNation that the UFC would be bringing back UFC Primetime to hype up Lesnar vs. Velasquez at UFC 121. Lesnar was defeated by Velasquez for the UFC Heavyweight Championship via TKO in the first round at UFC 121 on October 23, 2010.
Coaching on The Ultimate Fighter
On January 11, 2011, it was revealed that Lesnar would be one of the coaches of The Ultimate Fighter Season 13, opposite to Junior dos Santos, with the two expected to face each other on June 11, 2011 at UFC 131. Lesnar, however, was struck with another bout of diverticulitis and had to withdraw from the bout on May 12, 2011. He was replaced by Shane Carwin who lost against dos Santos at UFC 131.
Lesnar underwent surgery on May 27, 2011, to help battle his problems with diverticulitis. UFC president Dana White said that Lesnar had a 12-inch piece of his colon removed.
Highest paid MMA athlete
ESPN The Magazine, in its May 2011 issue, did a story listing the highest paid athlete based on base salary and earnings for the most recent calendar year or most recent season in 30 sports. Brock Lesnar topped the list for mixed martial artists at $5.3 million, which included his reported bout salaries and estimated pay-per-view bonuses.
Overeem Fight and Retirement
In the summer of 2011 Lesnar announced that he was ready to get back into the Octagon, stating that "I feel like a new man, healthy, strong, I feel like I used to feel."
His return match was scheduled to be at UFC 141 on December 30 in Las Vegas against former Strikeforce heavyweight champion Alistair Overeem. Lesnar had to cut weight for the fight in order to meet the 265 lb weight limit and entered the Octagon with a potential title shot at the new champion Junior dos Santos for the match victor. During the match, Overeem targeted his opponent's midsection and was able to land several strikes before delivering a powerful kick that dropped Lesnar to his knee and left him prey to a barrage of punches resulting in the referee stopping the fight and declaring Overeem the winner via TKO at 2:26 of the first round. After the defeat, Lesnar announced his retirement from mixed martial arts, mentioning his struggles with diverticulitis and saying "tonight was the last time you'll see me in the octagon". UFC President Dana White commented that whilst he had no foreknowledge, Lesnar's decision to retire was not a surprise to him.
Mixed martial arts record
|Professional record breakdown|
|0 matches||0 wins||0 losses|
Lesnar grew up on a farm in South Dakota, and later joined the National Guard at the age of seventeen. In January 2001, Lesnar was arrested for receiving large amounts of what was alleged to be steroids. The charges were later dropped when it was discovered the substances were in fact a legal growth hormone. His lawyer later described the growth hormone as a "vitamin type of thing."
Lesnar has one daughter, Mya Lynn who was born on April 10, 2002, with his ex-fiancée, Nicole. He left Nicole in 2003 in order to begin a relationship with Rena "Sable" Mero who had been recently divorced from Marc Mero. Lesnar and Mero were engaged in 2004, separated in 2005, then reconciled later that year and married on May 6, 2006. Lesnar has one stepchild with Mero: Mariah, a stepdaughter born to Mero and her late husband, Wayne Richardson. The couple had their first child together, a son named Turk in June 2009. The couple had their second child, a son named Duke in July 2010.
Lesnar has numerous tattoos, with the most prominent being a stylized skull in the center of his back and a large sword on his chest.
He is known to be very conservative of his private life and avoids discussing it in interviews:
On December 15, 2011, Lesnar was charged with hunting infractions of a trip to Alberta on November 19, 2010. On a court appearance in Medicine Hat in December 20, two charges were dropped but pleaded guilty to the charge of improper tagging of an animal. Lesnar was fined $1,725 and given a six-month hunting suspension.
- Finishing moves
- Signature moves
- Back Wheel Trip
- Double or a triple powerbomb
- Fireman's carry sitout powerslam - OVW
- Fujiwara Armbar
- Knee lift to the opponent's midsection
- Multiple suplex variations
- Multiple turnbuckle thrusts
- Rear Naked Choke
- Running Corner Shoulder Block
- Running shoulderbreaker
- Standing Double Leg Takedown Followed by Mounted Punches or Forearms
- Notable Feuds
- John Cena
- The Undertaker
- Seth Rollins
- Triple H
- The Rock
- Kurt Angle
- Hulk Hogan
- Eddie Guerrero
- Big Show
- CM Punk
- The Hardy Boyz
- Rob Van Dam
- Ric Flair
- Stone Cold Steve Austin
- "The Anomaly"
- "The Violent God of Retribution"
- "The Next Big Thing"
- "The Beast (Incarnate)"
- "The Conqueror"
- "The One in 21-1"
- "The Mayor of Suplex City"
- Entrance themes
Championships and accomplishments
- Big Ten Conference
- Big Ten Conference Champion (1999, 2000)
- Ranked the #1 Heavyweight in the Big Ten Conference (2000)
- National Collegiate Athletic Association
- NCAA Division I Runner-up (1999)
- NCAA Division I Champion (2000)
- North Dakota State University's annual Bison tournament
- Heavyweight Champion (1997–1999)
- National Junior College Athletic Association
- NJCAA All-American (1997, 1998)
- Junior College National Champion (1998)
Mixed martial arts
- Ultimate Fighting Championship
- UFC Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- Submission of the Night (1 time)
- Wrestling Observer Newsletter awards
- Sherdog Awards
- Beatdown of the Year (2009)
- Fighter's Only World MMA Awards
- Breakthrough fighter of the year (2009)
- Inoki Genome Federation
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated
- World Wrestling Entertainment
- Wrestling Observer Newsletter awards
1Lesnar's first reign was as WWE Undisputed Champion.
- WWE.com Profile
- Brock Lesnar profile at CAGEMATCH.net
- Brock Lesnar's Official Deathclutch Website
- Professional MMA record for Brock Lesnar from Sherdog