Brock Lesnar’s net worth just went up a couple million dollars after it was announced that the infamous MMA fighter and WWE wrestler will be fighting at UFC 200. At one time Brock Lesnar was the highest paid UFC fighter in the world, so it stands to reason that “The Next Best Thing’s” return to the Octagon will earn him some serious cash.
Brock Lesnar’s Net Worth as of 2016: $20 Million
Right now Brock Lesnar’s worth around $20 million. He’s no longer the richest MMA fighter in the world, but he’s certainly not hurting for money. Let’s find out how the man from South Dakota learned to take Las Vegas by storm.
These are the years where Brock Lesnar officially became “The Next Big Thing.” In 2000, after crushing it at Bismarck State College and the University of Minnesota, he signed a deal with the WWE. From there, he was sent to the developmental leagues with Ohio Valley Wrestling but immediately began to dominate there.
Just two years later, Brock debuted on the main roster of WWE. He won his first championship five months into his debut, becoming the youngest champion in WWE history at 25. He would go on to win three separate heavyweight championships, each of which surely brought a hefty bonus check.
After an extremely successful couple of years of WWE wrestling, Brock Lesnar decided to try out for the NFL. Here’s what he told the media about his decision:
“I ain’t afraid of anything and I ain’t afraid of anybody. I’ve been an underdog in athletics since I was five. I got zero college offers for wrestling. Now people say I can’t play football, that it’s a joke. I say I can. I’m as good an athlete as a lot of guys in the NFL, if not better. I’ve always had to fight for everything. I wasn’t the best technician in amateur wrestling but I was strong, had great conditioning, and a hard head. Nobody could break me.”
Things were going well for Brock’s transition to the NFL (he made the Minnesota Vikings practice team) until his motorbike was hit by a minivan. He suffered a broken jaw, a broken left hand, a bruised pelvis, and a pulled groin.
As a result of his injuries and his inability to perform at the same high levels, Brock was cut from the Vikings before the season began.
Brock took some time away from the limelight until UFC 81 ($250,000 purse), where he made his Ultimate Fighting Championship debut against Frank Mir. Although he’d go on to lose this fight, Brock Lesnar’s name and marketability mean that it wouldn’t be long before he’d get another shot. First he beat Heath Herring at UFC 87 ($250K + $200K win bonus) and then just ten UFC events later, Brock defeated Randy Couture at UFC 91 ($200K + $250K win bonus) and earned the UFC Heavyweight belt.
He defended his belt once successfully against Frank Mir at UFC 100 ($400K) after which Brock contracted mononucleosis and some serious complications (including a leakage of fecal matter into his intestine). These illnesses put Lesnar out for a long time.
Brock Lesnar he returned with reasonable health in 2010 and successfully defended his title at UFC 116 (purse of $400K + $75K submission bonus) against Shane Carwin.
Next he would take on Cain Velasquez, an undefeated up and comer, at UFC 121 ($400K). Lesnar would lose that fight in a TKO in the first round, losing the championship as well. But again, Lesnar’s notoriety and familiarity within the sports world meant he wouldn’t have to wait long for another shot.
On January 11th, 2011 that shot came in the form of not only a starring role as a coach on the reality show The Ultimate Fighter Season 13, but a match against the opposing coach Junior Dos Santos at UFC 131. Although it’s not known how much Lesnar made from that show, let’s just say he wasn’t working for free. Sadly, the intestinal problems returned and he was forced to drop out of the fight.
In May of 2011, ESPN The Magazine published a story listing the highest paid athlete based on base salary and earnings for the most recent calendar year or most recent season in 30 sports. Lesnar topped the list for MMA at $5.3 million, which included his reported bout salaries and estimated pay-per-view bonuses.
Brock Lesnar returned to the octagon at UFC 141 ($400K), where he took on Alistair Overeem. Again, he lost, after which he announced his retirement from the UFC.
After retiring from the UFC, Brock Lesnar returned to the WWE a new man. As a heel, he saw incredible success, culminating in defeating The Undertaker at Wrestlemania XXX thereby ending the Undertaker’s Wrestlemania win streak (21) .
He would go on to headline eight separate PPV events, all of which meant that he’d receive a large bonus for appearances.
In 2015, ESPN called Lesnar “The Most Accomplished Athlete In Pro Wrestling History.”
After having officially announced he was “closing the door” on the UFC, Brock Lesnar surprised the world when he agreed to fight at UFC 200. He was asked by Hannah Storm on SportsCenter how much he had agreed on to take the fight:
“Big business. At the end of the day, I’m a prize fighter. I don’t fight… listen, titles don’t pay the bills. What pays the bills, I’m a prize fighter, I fight for money. It’s no different, they are making money, I’m making money, everybody is making money. That’s what this is all about. More importantly, it’s not about the money to me. I have always said money is very important to me, but you can’t step inside the Octagon just for the money. This is from the heart, this is in my heart and it just so happens that I’m making a boat load of money. I can’t disclose, but there are lots of zeros behind it. I can’t disclose that, why would I want to? I am not here to brag about that. I am here to state that I’m a prize fighter and everybody is making money. At the end of the day, this is going to be an exciting show for me, I’m honored to be a part of it and it’s humbling to sit here and actually announce to the world. I feel like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders because I’ve been carrying this around. It’s for real.”
Earlier, Brock had said that he’d turned down the UFC even though they had offered him “ten times more” than what he had made in his MMA career. With that thinking, we’d guess that he’s making close (or over) $2 million for his UFC 200 fight. It also stands to reason that he might get a cut of the PPV profits, which would almost certainly go up with Brock Lesnar on the fight card.