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White: Brock Lesnar didn’t return to the UFC because of new WWE deal, not new PPV model

Dana White has shut down rumours that Brock Lesnar didn’t make his UFC return due to the promotion’s new PPV model.

MMA: UFC 200-Lesnar vs Hunt Joshua Dahl-USA TODAY Sports

Dana White has dismissed claims that Brock Lesnar didn’t make his UFC return due to the promotion’s new PPV model being exclusive to ESPN+.

Instead, the UFC president explained to ESPN that Lesnar didn’t return to the UFC as he secured a better deal in the WWE.

“That’s not why Brock Lesnar didn’t fight,” White said when asked if Lesnar turned down the UFC’s new pay-per-view model. “Brock Lesnar got a better deal is basically what happened for Brock.” (Transcription via MMA Fighting)

It looked like a fight between Lesnar and UFC heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier was going to materialize when the WWE superstar confronted Cormier in the cage following his title win at UFC 226 last year. Instead, talks broke down and with Lesnar now staying in the WWE, a rematch between Cormier and Miocic will take place at UFC 241 in August.

White also refused to agree with the idea that Lesnar and Conor McGregor refused to fight in the UFC due to the financial restrictions that are now in place due to the promotion’s new pay-per-view deal with ESPN.

“That’s absolutely false,” White said. “And if you really look when we were on pay-per-view, we were on traditional pay-per-view, everybody was talking about how the pay-per-view business was dying. It’s dying and nobody can pull numbers anymore.

“Really? We were still pulling five to seven million pay-per-view buys a year when we were on the dying, traditional pay-per-view. You can’t listen to any of this noise.”

Whilst the 41-year-old Lesnar’s UFC future looks stagnant, the same can be said for McGregor, however he has recently hinted a return to the Octagon on Twitter.

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