In Minnesota, two of the things that we tend to attach to Brock Lesnar's name are "former NCAA wrestling champion at the University of Minnesota" and "who tried out for the Minnesota Vikings as a defensive lineman." Everywhere else, that pales compared to his more recent careers as a professional wrestler and mixed-martial arts competitor.

Wrestling for the U in 2000

Lesnar made headlines over the weekend when he announced that he'll be fighting in UFC 200 on July 9, his first mixed-martial arts action since September 2011. He isn't leaving pro wrestling for UFC. World Wrestling Entertainment is referring to his UFC bout against Mark Hunt as a "one-off opportunity" and said that Lesnar will compete in WWE's SummerSlam in August.

At Vikings training camp in 2006

Appearing on ESPN Monday, Lesnar put himself in the ranks of professional crossover athletes who have made an impact on more than one sport.

Lesnar told ESPN: "I'm a crossover athlete. I'm the modern-day Bo Jackson, people. I'm excited about it. I'm enthusiastic. I couldn't be more excited and honored to have the opportunity that both (WWE and UFC) have faith in Brock Lesnar to allow him to step back into the Octagon."

At UFC 116 in 2010

Last year, Lesnar told people he was finished as a mixed-martial arts fighter, but said Monday on ESPN that he was never entirely comfortable with the decision to walk away. Lesnar has a 5-3 MMA record, with seven of those bouts on UFC cards, including when he won the heavyweight tile by defeating Randy Couture in 2008 at UFC 91. He lost his last two UFC fights, but said that he wasn't at full strength following being ill with diverticulitis, which kept him from fighting for almost a year.

Lesnar's full MMA record is here.

So why the comeback?

"I'm a prize fighter," Lesnar told ESPN. "Titles don't pay bills. I fight for money. I'm making money. They're making money. Everybody's making money. That's what this is all about."

At Wrestlemania in April

You can read the full ESPN report here.



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