Unscripted: Lashley on Lesnar

By Jake Rossen Jul 16, 2009
There is no corner of the Earth Bobby Lashley could escape to in the week following Brock Lesnar’s win over Frank Mir that would protect him from comparison. Like Lesnar, he’s a granite slab of genetic good fortune; like Lesnar, he won national titles in wrestling; and like Lesnar, he earned a name and base of marketability on the WWE circuit.

Ray Carsillo at 1050 AM ESPN Radio in New York invited Lashley to appear on his program Wednesday, and the conversation did not last more than a few turns before Lashley was asked to offer an opinion on a potential match with Lesnar.

“I’m not going to say anything bad on Brock, because Brock is doing all the right things,” Lashley said. “[But] my sights are set on Brock. I’m not saying I want to fight him because he’s ‘the wrestling guy.’ I’m saying it because I am a heavyweight fighter and he’s the champ.”

Watching two NCAA-accredited animals butt heads is a perfectly fine premise for a UFC title bout, but Lashley has to be getting the vibe that his past may come back to haunt him. Dana White has been queried often about bringing Lashley in: The responses have been noncommittal at best, insulting (“Who?”) at worst. The idea that two former WWE headliners would be occupying the same real estate is perhaps too gratifying a concept for Vince McMahon -- and too horrifying for White -- to bear.

There is also the plain issue that Lashley is not necessarily Lesnar’s equal. Against underwhelming opposition Jason Guida, he had to be satisfied with a decision win. Lashley is bullish and compact -- even at 6’2” -- where Lesnar can use some abnormally long arms to punch like a drill press without getting tied up. Twenty years on, I suspect it will be Lesnar who will have had the more accomplished career.

Lashley also confirmed he‘s signed a deal with TNA Wrestling to work four dates a month. To my knowledge, it’s the first time an active, high-profile prizefighter has taken on a recurring role in wrestling in the states while still pursuing a fight career. We’ll see if that’s in anyone’s best interests.
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