Now, though, circumstances have changed for the K-1 kickboxing champ and former Strikeforce and Dream heavyweight champion.
"I am now training for Lesnar in Holland. I flew back about a week ago," said Overeem in his blog for Yahoo! Sports. "I don’t want to go too deep into personal matters, but what happened was my mother is recovering from cancer and needs my support. She needs me in Holland over the next couple of weeks and I came back for her."
It is a good move for the possible No. 1 contender for Junior dos Santos' heavyweight belt. Overeem feels this move will take away any distractions from his training for Lesnar.
"What I can say is that going back to Holland to be with my mother won’t be a distraction; it is actually stopping me from getting distracted," said Overeem. "If I stayed in Las Vegas for this camp, I would be constantly worried about her and my focus would have been compromised. Now I can train 100 percent, and know she’s just across town."
Overeem has been one of the biggest names outside the UFC, especially in the heavyweight division. Overeem had a falling out with Strikeforce that eventually led him to finally being signed by the UFC and now in a fight for a possible No. 1 contender's spot.
As for his fight with Lesnar, Overeem feels he can match the power of the former Division I wresting national champion.
"I have no problem saying that I think I can match power with Brock Lesnar," Overeem said. "In fact the UFC poster for our fight has Brock and me side by side with our measurements and I am the bigger man."