In case you’d missed the news, WWE superstar Brock Lesnar is returning to the Octagon to fight Mark Hunt at UFC 200, despite being under contract with Vince McMahon’s multi-billion dollar pro-wrestling organisation.
It’s a bit strange to let one of your top stars go to make money elsewhere, even if it is a one-off, but it’s now emerged that there could be method behind Vince’s apparent madness, as the WWE have their eye on Ronda Rousey in a potential ‘swap’ deal.
Rousey has been out of action since being knocked out by Holly Holm at UFC 193, and famously made a one-off appearance at Wrestlemania 31 back in 2015, where she slapped Stephanie McMahon and hip-tossed Triple H out of the ring.
She later tweeted:
The night: Historic.
The moment: Electric.
The Rock, Ronda &the WWE Universe: Magic.
We're just gettin' started… pic.twitter.com/mUOoBIFsaQ
— Ronda Rousey (@RondaRousey) March 30, 2015
According to Forbes, WWE is hoping that by allowing Lesnar to fight in the UFC again, Dana White will let Rousey compete in an actual WWE match at Wrestlemania 33 next April.
Another perk for McMahon is getting some advertising exposure for SummerSlam at UFC 200, where Lesnar’s fight with Hunt – the eighth ranked heavyweight in the UFC – is going to attract huge attention.
UFC may be inclined to work more with WWE after they allowed Lesnar to fight for them, and collaborations in future could become commonplace.
The exposure that UFC could gain from an event as big as Wrestlemania would certainly help cross-promote, and Rousey working a match at ‘The Showcase of the Immortals’ would only help revenue reach new levels.
Many expect lifelong wrestling fan Rousey to eventually make the switch to WWE full-time in future, so this could be the start of a new era in the former UFC women’s bantamweight champion’s career.