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Report: WWE officials believe Brock Lesnar will return to the UFC

WWE officials think that former UFC champion Brock Lesnar is planning a return to Mixed Martial Arts.

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Brock Lesnar's current stint with the WWE could come to an end soon, with his contract set to expire on early 2015. As the former UFC champion's impending free agency approaches, it's been speculated that a potential return to mixed martial arts is more than just a possibility, especially now that he's finally healthy.

To fan the flames even more, Dave Meltzer now reports at (subscription required) that WWE officials believe that Lesnar is indeed planning a comeback:

Speaking of Lesnar, even though he is no longer being advertised as one of the stars on the 1/19 Raw show in Dallas, he is still booked on the card. It’s a 180 from building the Raws that he was on around him as the top star to not even listing him as a top star. The Lesnar people always keep things quiet, but within the company, the belief is that he’s going back to UFC, and his showing up lighter to TV last week confirmed that to people who thought it. If it wasn’t for Punk, this would be a big deal, but with Punk, it’s a much bigger deal because the last thing WWE wants is this perception that UFC has just grabbed two of the company’s biggest stars. Lesnar is back on the 12/29 Raw in Washington, DC.

The UFC won't be the only competition the WWE has by the time Lesnar's contract expires. According to Scott Coker, the Viacom-backed promotion in Bellator will also be looking to join the bidding war. So much so that they have already reached out to Lesnar to say they're interested:

Coker said there have been no actual negotiations, it was just Bellator's way of "saying hello" and that the company is interested in his services.

"There hasn't been any serious dialogue," Coker said. "But when the time comes to have serious dialogue, we'll be right there."

"I think that he's a big needle mover. There have been several years that have passed and I think that he still has the WWE limelight. There's not going to be a fighter on the planet we can't afford and have access to."

Lesnar will be turning 38-years-old, and will have been out of MMA competition for over 3 years, so we won't really know how he will perform after the long layoff and health issues. That said, Lesnar was unquestionably the sport's biggest star during his UFC stint, making it more than enough reason for these companies to throw money his way during free agency.