Ken Shamrock is one of the most gifted all-around fighters to ever step foot inside the UFC Octagon or a WWE ring, and the World’s Most Dangerous Man is far from done making an impact on the sports world.
Shamrock took time to sit down with the boys of Ring Rust Radio in an exclusive interview (some language NSFW) to talk about his desire to make another run in the WWE, his career in MMA and the UFC, Brock Lesnar, the rumored Dana White vs. Vince McMahon fight (h/t MMAWeekly) and so much more.
At 49 years old, Shamrock is still keeping his body in top form and has reportedly taken on another fight in July (h/t Sherdog). With the ability to still perform at a high level in mixed martial arts, there is little doubt that a transition back to the WWE would be seamless.
Shamrock dominated the UFC while MMA was still blossoming in the United States, and the WWE used the international legend as one of the superstars to help bring some legitimacy to the sport in the late 1990s.
In Shamrock’s short time with the WWE, he was one of the most feared and dominant forces the wrestling industry ever saw. Despite the aura that surrounded his character, Shamrock never won the company's world title, and that’s something he clearly regrets.
As a legend in pro wrestling and a UFC Hall of Famer, the WWE would be foolish not to consider bringing Shamrock back for a part-time run.
Ken Shamrock on Wanting to Return to WWE
Ken Shamrock is one of the most decorated MMA fighters of all time—first-ever Pancrase champion, UFC Superfight champion and the first inductee into the UFC Hall of Fame—but his pro wrestling career is missing the crowning achievement; a world title in the WWE.
Shamrock won the NWA World Heavyweight Championship in TNA, but he knows that’s not the pinnacle of the sport.
While Shamrock was the 1998 King of the Ring, an Intercontinental champion and a Tag Team champion, the fact that the World’s Most Dangerous Man never reached the WWE’s mountain top is something that bothers him to this day and fuels his desire to return:
Oh, definitely. I’ve tried to reach out, but I’ve been hitting some walls. I’m not sure if my messages are getting through or not…I got into pro wrestling, I’ve got tag team champion, Intercontinental champion, King of the Ring. There were several times where I wished I had got that opportunity, and probably should have had that opportunity, to at least challenge for the Heavyweight Championship belt. I never got that opportunity, and I’m not sure why, but it is what it is. I will keep fighting to try and get that opportunity and close this thing up to be probably one of the only persons in sports history to go into several different organizations and become world champion in every one of them.
The fact that Shamrock is taking on MMA bouts proves he is still in shape, and with the right notice from the WWE, there is little doubt that the veteran couldn't keep up with today's talent.
Shamrock knows what the WWE as a business is worth to his post-wrestling career, and his willingness to come back like Chris Jericho and help younger talent get over is something the WWE should consider.
A talented wrestler like Jack Swagger trying to get over with the crowd as a heel would greatly benefit from working a program with a returning fan favorite like Shamrock.
Shamrock offers the company an opportunity to bring back an older crowd—the causal fans that remember him from the Attitude Era and his MMA career—and fulfill many of the WWE Universe's dream matches.
Ken Shamrock on Brock Lesnar
Despite being arguably the biggest draw in UFC history (h/t Yahoo! Sports), there are many around the sport of MMA that were not impressed with Lesnar’s career and his achievements and feel he does not deserve the hype he received.
After talking about his own transition from MMA to pro wrestling, Shamrock opened up about Lesnar's jump from WWE to UFC:
…People go, "What about Brock Lesnar?" Brock Lesnar was not a true MMA fighter. Brock Lesnar was basically eye candy for MMA. He came in there, he was big, he was strong, he won a few matches, he captured the title and then he was out. Not much of a career. He is a true pro wrestler and amateur wrestler, so I think it’s a lot easier making the transition from being an amateur wrestler and pro wrestler into MMA than it is being an MMA fighter into pro wrestling.
While the impact Lesnar made on the mainstream appeal of the UFC and MMA in general in the United States is undeniable—he brought mixed martial arts to a wider audience that never would have looked twice at the sport—Shamrock has every right to question his longevity.
Shamrock fought in MMA for the better part of 10 years at an extremely high level and promoted the sport to a wider audience when he went to WWE during its greatest peak. The fact that he was a staple of the sport and an ambassador for its betterment is something Lesnar never did.
It will be hard for some apologists to accept, but Shamrock’s comments are right on the money.
Ken Shamrock on Dana White Fighting Vince McMahon
Shamrock is one of the few men in the entire world who has worked closely with both UFC president Dana White and WWE owner Vince McMahon, getting on the good side and the bad side of each over his time with both companies.
With that knowledge of both men's character and a unique point of view, Shamrock tackled the rumor about McMahon calling out White and challenging him to a fight, either in the UFC’s Octagon or a WWE ring, according to MMA Weekly:
That would be awesome. The only thing is that this is what I know about Dana [White], and you can ask anyone, Dana always talks and talks and talks, but I’ve never seen him do anything. I saw Vince talk, talk and talk, and he has done something, he has gotten into the ring, he has participated with the fighters and the wrestlers. I have not seen Dana White do that. I’ve seen him call out Tito [Ortiz] like they were gonna fight, and it never happened. I’ve never seen Dana interact with his business the way that Vince has. Vince has stepped in the ring against guys he’s pissed off. Hey, you gotta give him credit for that. He stepped into the lion’s den, per say. He did step into the Lion’s Den one time!
Shamrock has seen what McMahon is capable of in the ring and behind the scenes as the boss of the WWE, and while White could be tough in a fight with his MMA training, the fact that the chairman of the board has fought the biggest names in the sport gives him the distinct advantage.
Instead of McMahon fighting White, though, the more intriguing match would be another chapter in the WWE owner’s feud with Shamrock that ended up in the Lion’s Den. Talk about unfinished business.
Whether Shamrock ever returns to the WWE or not, his impact on the business can still be felt today as professional wrestlers use MMA maneuvers to enhance their matches.
The WWE Universe would love to have the World’s Most Dangerous Man back for another run.
For more wrestling talk, listen to Ring Rust Radio for all of the hot topics or catch the latest episode in the player below (some language NSFW).