Brock Lesnar has revealed that he considered himself to be retired after being defeated by Drew McIntyre at WrestleMania 36.
At the 2020 Royal Rumble WWE Champion Brock Lesnar entered himself into the Royal Rumble match as he felt he had run out of worthy challengers. During the match, Lesnar was eliminated by eventual winner Drew McIntyre, setting up a clash between the pair at WrestleMania.
However, in the months between the two events, the world was thrown into turmoil as the COVID-19 pandemic took hold. This meant that WrestleMania 36 was held at the Performance Center with no fans in attendance.
In the main event of night two, Lesnar was defeated by McIntyre, and wasn’t seen in a WWE ring again until SummerSlam 2021.
Speaking during an appearance on The Michael Kay Show, Lesnar revealed that when his contract expired after WrestleMania in April 2020, he effectively retired. The Beast explained that he started his career in front of no fans and felt it was strangely fitting to end his career without fans two decades later.
“When I was younger I thought ‘ah, I’ll want to retire when I’m 40,’” Lesnar said. “I actually retired when COVID hit and my contract was up in 2020, I think. So full circle Brock Lesnar story; I had my first pro wrestling match in Hamel, Minnesota in a garage in front of no people. And 20 years later, in the WWE Heavyweight Champion of the world, had my last wrestling match in a warehouse in front of no people. So 20 years, full cycle, full revolution. And I’m like ‘alright, cool, I’m out.’”
When asked why he decided to come back more than a year later, Lesnar made no secret of the fact money was his main motivation.
At SummerSlam 2021, when Lesnar came to the ring to confront Roman Reigns, he did so sporting a new beard and a ponytail, a complete switch from his traditional look. The WWE Champion said that neither of the two changes were planned, and he was only wearing a ponytail so he wouldn’t lose a bet with his kids.
“My whole life I’ve been wearing a flat top,” Lesnar said. “You know, crew cut. I grew my beard out. I had one beard when I fought in the UFC, but I said ‘I’m just, I’m just gonna let it all go.’ And then last summer before any of this evolved, like, it was so hot. I’m like ‘I’m gonna cut my hair.’
“So my kids cut my hair and then they were like ‘I’m gonna give you a mohawk.’ And then they go ‘I bet you won’t wear a ponytail.’ I was like ‘I’m not gonna lose a bet to my kid.’ So I wore this, this look that I got. And it wasn’t like a mastermind of nothing. It was a joke. Here I am. Brock Lesnar, the biga– joke.”
Brock Lesnar is currently preparing to face Universal Champion Roman Reigns at WrestleMania 38. The bout will see both of WWE’s top championships on the line. However, it has been reported that while the winner will leave as the undisputed WWE Champion, the move to one World Title will only be temporary.
H/t to Wrestling Inc for the transcription.