Following his decisive win over Daniel Cormier at UFC 214, Jon Jones called out current WWE Universal champion Brock Lesnar, saying “if you wanna know what it feels like to get your ass kicked by a guy who weighs 40 pounds less than you, meet me in the Octagon!” Lesnar, who is already rumored to be itching to return to the octagon, responded by saying “be careful what you wish for, young man.”
Since then, pro wrestling and MMA fans have been waiting with bated breath to see if and when the fight might happen.
According to SI.com, that time could be coming soon.
SI.com has learned that Lesnar’s return to the UFC is imminent, and he will fight Jones as well as fulfill his WWE obligations at the Royal Rumble and WrestleMania 34.
Lesnar’s obligations to WWE run through next April but there’s a lot of empty space between the upcoming SummerSlam event and the Royal Rumble in January. Considering Lesnar is putting his title on the line in a four-man match, all signs seem to point to him losing the belt (without getting pinned, of course) and using the time in between to train for his fight with Jones next year.
Lesnar also needs some extra time because if he wants to fight in UFC, he first has to enter himself into the USADA drug testing pool for six months. While he was able to skip this last time he fought, his failed drug test after defeating Mark Hunt means he won’t get special treatment this time around. While some people think he might have already re-entered the testing pool, it’s more likely that he will do so following SummerSlam, which still gives him more than enough time to fight in early 2018.
Some MMA sites are predicting that a summer showdown in 2018 is the most likely scenario for Lesnar and Jones given the testing period and his WWE obligations. Vince McMahon is savvy enough to want to milk the hype around Lesnar for everything it’s worth and that almost certainly includes building WrestleMania around him.
Of course, Lesnar has also used public interest in MMA as a negotiating tactic for a better deal with WWE, so until someone signs on the dotted line don’t buy your ticket just yet.