AEW announcer & WWE Hall of Famer Jim Ross recently spoke with Alex McCarthy of talkSPORT and revealed how WWE Chairman & CEO Vince McMahon reacted when he first saw a young Brock Lesnar years ago.
JR recalled how he and WWE Hall of Famer Gerald Brisco, then working as a talent scout for the company, brought Lesnar to a WWE TV taping years ago in Minneapolis, where he went to college.
“Gerry Brisco and I brought Brock Lesnar to a TV taping in Minneapolis because he went to college there,” Ross said. “I said to McMahon, ‘That new kid I’m recruiting is here tonight. If you get a chance I’d like you to say hello him.’
“So McMahon is walking about with his Mr. McMahon walk and he happens to glance over and Gerry Brisco is standing by this monster. Vince made a U-turn and bee-lined right to Brock – he had never seen him. Never watched him wrestle. He knew Gerry and I was high on him, but Gerry didn’t meet with Vince on a regular basis, I met with Vince every day. I said, ‘We got this kid we’re going to sign and he’s going to be extraordinary. You’re going to love him.’”
McMahon reportedly knew Lesnar was “the guy” as soon as he saw him.
“So when Vince laid eyes on him he knew that we had the guy,” JR continued. “If he had any aptitude whatsoever – we knew athletically he was going to be great, he’d already proven himself as an athlete – but if he could get the showbiz side of it and have the aptitude to be a pro wrestler, he was going to be our guy for a while. And that worked out.”
Lesnar signed a WWE contract in 2000 and was sent to the OVW developmental territory. He was called to the main roster in 2002, where he had a successful run before leaving WWE to pursue a NFL career in 2004. He ended up wrestling in Japan and pursuing other endeavors before returning to WWE in April 2012.
Lesnar is not currently signed to a WWE contract, but is expected to return to the company at some point. He has not been seen since dropping the WWE Title to Drew McIntyre at WrestleMania 36 in 2020.