Controversy Creates Cash: Dana, Lesnar and The WWE Crossover

Captain FantabulousCorrespondent IJuly 13, 2009

LONDON - JANUARY 17:  (UK TABLOID NEWSPAPERS OUT) UFC president Dana White attends the 'Octagon' private view at Hamilton's Gallery January 17, 2007 in London, England.  The exhibition showcases work by photographer Kevin Lynch documenting the world of Ultimate Fighter Championship (UFC) events.  (Photo by Claire Greenway/Getty Images)


I took a call from an old University buddy, last year. We are both fans of MMA, and ex ju-jitsu training partners, so we were having a chat about the UFC promotion he had just been to.  I should add, he was backstage, not ring side.


He is lucky enough to work in the industry now. 


So much so that he counts Dana White as a sort of buddy (well he has his number).


Anyway, he made a pretty memorable comment. Perplexing at the time, but interesting now.


“There is a lot of crossover, between UFC and WWE promotions.  They are beginning to feed off each other”.


He went on to state that both events have largely the same target audience – as in, people who like WWE tend to like MMA as well. And that the success of the WWE, in terms of PPV sales, and TV figures, had put $ signs in Dana’s eyes.


It makes sense.


If you both share the same fans, why not learn from their success over the last 20 years.


This 2007 prophecy is becoming more and more apparent.


A lot of WWE magazines, also cover MMA. WWE fan chanting, signs and general characteristics are appearing in UFC crowds.


The muse for this article, is actually Brock Lesnar.  I’m not slating his legitimacy as a fighter – the guy’s skilled. I’m just questioning his odd behaviour, before and after fights in the last year.


He has behaved very much like a WWE character. Trash talking, disrespecting fans,  trashing sponsors, almost feigned arrogance.


This could be Chris Jericho, not the UFC heavyweight champion. It just smacks of attitude era wrestling.


Degeneration X, for real.


I’ve read of Dana White’s “outrage” in regards to Lesnar’s behaviour. I find it hard to believe.


I wouldn’t be hugely surprised of Lesnar has been instructed to act in the manner he has. And play the villain.


In the words of Erik Bischoff, “controversy creates cash”.