Cincinnati, Ohio (USA) â<80>” International superstar Brock Lesnar has already achieved high grades for his transition from pro wrestling to mixed martial arts. Now the former NCAA Champion and four-time All-American is ready for the next step in his career – taking on the best heavyweights in the world in the Ultimate Fighting ChampionshipÂ® (UFCÂ®) organization.
UFC President Dana White announced the signing of Lesnar to a promotional contract during the pay-per-view broadcast of UFC 77 at the US Bank Arena.
â<80><9c>I donâ<80><99>t think there are any other pro wrestlers that can make the transition to MMA, except for Brock Lesnar,â<80> said White. â<80><9c>And if you look at his amateur wrestling credentials, his size, and what heâ<80><99>s done, this guy can end up being a force in the heavyweight division of the UFC.â<80>
â<80><9c>If you want to go with the NFL of the fighting game, itâ<80><99>s the UFC, and it was an easy choice for me,â<80> said Lesnar. â<80><9c>Obviously I donâ<80><99>t think Iâ<80><99>m ready for a title shot right away, but I will be there, and Iâ<80><99>m not gonna turn down any opponent because Iâ<80><99>m here to prove myself. Iâ<80><99>m not here to pick and choose my fights. Iâ<80><99>ll fight whomever they want. I donâ<80><99>t make the fights; thatâ<80><99>s not my job. Iâ<80><99>ve got one job to do and thatâ<80><99>s to fight.â<80>
The date and opponent for Lesnarâ<80><99>s UFC debut will be revealed in the near future.
A native of Webster, South Dakota who now makes his home in Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota, the 6 foot 3 Â½ , 265 pound Lesnar first made a name for himself as a wrestler at Webster High School, compiling a 33-0 record in his senior year. This success eventually led him to Bismarck State College and the University of Minnesota, where he was a four-time All American, two-time Big Ten Champion, a second place finisher in the 1999 NCAA Championships, and the 2000 NCAA National Champion.
After finishing his college career with an astounding 106-5 record, Lesnar became a household name as a professional wrestler, and even had a short stint in the NFLÂ® with the Minnesota Vikings.
In 2007 though, Lesnar was in need of a new challenge in his life, and he turned to mixed martial arts, where world-class wrestlers like himself have had enormous success throughout the sportâ<80><99>s history. On June 2, 2007, Lesnar made his long-awaited MMA debut and took only 69 seconds to destroy Min Soo Kim with strikes that led to a submission.
Lesnarâ<80><99>s signing to the UFC bolsters a talent-rich heavyweight division that includes former PRIDE heavyweight champion Antonio Rodrigo â<80>~Minotauroâ<80><99> Nogueira, Cheick Kongo, former two-time UFC heavyweight champion Tim Sylvia, Brandon Vera, Gabriel Gonzaga, Mirko Cro Cop, Fabricio Werdum and Heath Herring.