Will Brock Lesnar be a different fighter from when he last fought in the Octagon in 2011?
Lesnar left the UFC on a two-fight losing streak, falling to Cain Velasquez and Alistair Overeem.
Fellow UFC heavyweight Josh Barnett, who also has experience with professional wrestling spoke with Ariel Helwani on “The MMA Hour” on Monday and touched upon the return of “The Beast” and how he wanted to be the one to welcome him back to the UFC.
“I wanted it because he’s a professional wrestler and so I am,” Barnett said (transcribed by MMA Fighting). “I wanted it because after five fights, they tried to say he was the No. 1 heavyweight in the world, which I thought was insulting to all of us. Not that he wasn’t talented, not that he didn’t have the potential to be far better than he ever was able to really show out there with such a young career, but it just felt like utter and absolute propaganda, and it was upsetting that there were media outlets that were supposed to be top of the pops that bought it.”
Barnett says that his team offered Lesnar to come and train with them, but the offer was never taken up by Lesnar.
“I don’t know what he’s done from then until now, but being out of it as long as he has, I don’t think he’s going to be stepping into the cage a better fighter than he was when he left.”
Although Barnett feels Lesnar may not have improved since 2011, he isn’t counting “The Beast” out in the matchup of styles as Lesnar will likely look to impose his grappling and ground and pound while Lesnar’s opponent, Mark Hunt, will look to keep the fight standing.
As far as Lesnar’s shortened window of USADA testing, Barnett says that he simply concentrates on making sure he gets his own testing filed with USADA, but admits that it is “kind of unfortunate” that Lesnar gets a “golden ticket.”
“I would think that USADA would not have the sort of rule set where they could make it flexible defined on the individual and not on the program.”
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