The battle between WWE and UFC to sign Olympic gold medalist Gable Steveson appears to be a one-sided fight.
Per Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (h/t Subhojeet Mukherjee of Thirsty For News), Steveson met with Vince McMahon in Las Vegas during SummerSlam weekend.
Meltzer noted that Dana White didn't meet with Steveson, and "UFC has not pursued him at nearly the level WWE has."
White told TMZ Sports last week he was planning to meet with the 21-year-old while he was in Las Vegas.
"[Gable] will be in town this weekend, and I think we're gonna hook up and talk," White said.
WWE is clearly making a hard push to sign Steveson. The company gave him and Tamyra Mensah-Stock, who won gold in the women's 68 kg freestyle at the Tokyo Games, an entrance during SummerSlam to greet the fans in attendance at Allegiant Stadium.
Welcome to <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SummerSlam?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SummerSlam</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/MensahTamStock?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@MensahTamStock</a> and <a href="https://twitter.com/GableSteveson?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@GableSteveson</a>! 🇺🇸 🥇 <a href="https://t.co/7RtzwM49K3">pic.twitter.com/7RtzwM49K3</a>
Steveson has publicly expressed a desire to compete in UFC. He sent out this tweet directly to White a few days after winning gold at the Olympics:
He also told Damon Martin of MMAFighting.com about wanting to become a UFC champion.
“Who wouldn’t want to be the baddest man on the planet? Who wouldn’t want to hold that UFC championship belt? I’m holding the gold medal and I’m the baddest wrestler on the planet. Why wouldn’t I want to go out there and be the baddest UFC heavyweight champion?”
Whichever promotion Steveson ends up signing with, he has the potential to be a major star. The Indiana native is the reigning 285-pound NCAA champion, 125 kg Pan American Championships gold medalist and 125 kg Olympic gold medalist.
Steveson wrapped up his college career at Minnesota with 34 consecutive match wins dating back to the 2019 NCAA championships, in which he finished third in the 285-pound division.
Listen to Ring Rust Radio for all of the hot wrestling topics. Catch the latest episode in the player below (warning: some language NSFW).