The Crossover Match That Almost Happened
In 2002, Lennox Lewis, the world heavyweight boxing champion, was offered a staggering £5 million by the WWE for a crossover match against rising star Brock Lesnar. The negotiations were serious enough that Vince McMahon, the CEO of WWE, went to the Nevada Athletic Commission for sanctioning.
Why Lewis Said No
According to Dave Meltzer in the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Lewis declined the offer after learning about Lesnar's real grappling experience. In a 2015 interview with TSN's Off The Record, Lewis confirmed that he was indeed offered £5 million but said he had to wear gloves while Lesnar would not have. This discrepancy in rules ultimately led to Lewis turning down the opportunity.
The Uncertain Nature of the Match
It remains unclear whether the match would have been scripted or a legitimate fight. But regardless of the outcome, the clash between boxing and wrestling would have undoubtedly been an intriguing spectacle.
Life After the Offer
After rejecting the WWE offer, Lewis went on to retire from boxing in 2004 after defeating Vitali Klitschko. Lesnar, on the other hand, became the WWE champion at the age of 25 in 2002 and later transitioned to MMA, winning the UFC title. He continues to be an active wrestler in the WWE to this day, although his last fight in the UFC ended in controversy due to a failed drug test.
It's safe to say that the crossover match between Lennox Lewis and Brock Lesnar would have been a clash of titans, showcasing the intersection of two different combat sports.
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