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SLAM! Speaks: The Brock watch
By SLAM! Wrestling Staff


Cartoon by Annette Balesteri, our SLAM! Wrestling Editorial Cartoonist

Oh the rumour mill - how fun you are.

As several netizens are reporting, Brock Lesnar, the would-be Minnesota Viking, has been apparantly contacting Vinny McMahon in the hopes of returning to World Wrestling Entertainment. After a couple of appearances in Japan and an engagement to Rena Mero, Lesnar's name has been put back in the headlines on this side of the gridiron.

Will "The Next Big Thing" return to Stamford's squared-circle? The SLAM! staff has their thoughts on the situation.

Greg Oliver

There will come a day when Brock Lesnar will be back in a WWE ring. His career options to make the kind of money that he was as a WWE superstar are few and far between, and no doubt with a planned marriage to Sable (Rena Mero), there will be somebody else pushing him to make some big bucks again. I wouldn't see it happening until late 2005, at the earliest though.

Jason Clevett

As history has proven, never say never in wrestling - Steve Austin, Sable, Hulk Hogan, Goldberg; these are just a few of the names that would never return or wanted nothing to do with WWE. While there are certainly opportunities in Japan and MMA that Lesnar may pursue, McMahon and co. will do anything they think will make them money, and understandably so since they are a business.Lesnar returning could be good business. Sure people rant about how its disrespectful to others in the company, but business is business and you can bet Lesnar's music hitting and him racing to the ring in a shocker would probably result in a huge pop. So don't bet your money against Lesnar returning.

Jon Waldman

If Brock were to return to WWE, he would be following the path that his fiancee Rena Mero paved - completely selling out on beliefs. I'd rather see Lesnar in the NFL, and given how poorly the Vikings' OL performed this year, I can see the team signing the big man very quickly. Look for Brock to go to the NFL or NFL Europe this year.

Corey David Lacroix

In all likelihood, Brock Lesnar will return to professional wrestling, but it will not be with WWE.

"The Next Big Thing" made a ringside appearance recently with New Japan Pro Wrestling, compliments of none other than Japanese wrestling demi-God Antonio Inoki. Without going into details, Inoki has history (the bad kind) with Vince McMahon. Be assured that every effort will be made by Inoki to secure Lesnar for NJPW and in the process, extend the perverbial middle finger to McMahon. This would also go a long way in showing Japanese wrestling fans that the home based promotions will not stand by idlely as WWE initiates an aggressive expansion into the Japanese market.

Not unlike the current market here in North America, Japan is also experiencing a major slump in the popularity of pro wrestling for a variety of reasons. The injection of Lesnar into the depressed NJPW would do wonders for the company if he is marketed properly as the big, bad gaijin (foreigner) who vows to demolish the homeland wrestling heroes. There is no doubt in my mind that Lesnar would draw at the box office, much to the delight of Inoki and the power brokers of NJPW.

There are benefits to Lesnar if this course is pursued. The major reason Lesnar left WWE was the grueling road schedule; and who can blame him? In Japan, the major promotions will tour for a week and a half to two weeks, then give their workers time off until the next tour. This may work well for Lesnar, who can strike a healthy balance of wrestling for good money and having the time off he requires.

Lesnar was earning millions with WWE and I suspect has grown accustomed to an elevated standard of living. He needs to make big money to uphold that plateau and needs to do it soon. If reports are accurate that WWE is not interested (although be assured, then need him) in bringing him back into the fold, then you can expect Lesnar to venture forth to the Land of the Rising Sun and claim the undiscovered fortunes that await.

RELATED LINK

  • More on Brock Lesnar

    Send your thoughts on Brock Lesnar's wrestling future to Jon Waldman. Reader thoughts will be posted next week.

    -- compiled by Jon Waldman