Pro wrestling and mixed martial arts have gone hand-in-hand for some time now, the two inexplicably linked for a variety of reasons. Some of the biggest stars from the early days of the UFC doubled as pro wrestlers, like Ken Shamrock, Dan Severn, and Tank Abbott. Later, Brock Lesnar would take the WWE by storm before doing the same in MMA, becoming the biggest box office attraction in history.
Recently, Tito Ortiz and Rampage Jackson have dipped their foot in the waters, testing its warmth under the Viacom umbrella with duel contracts between Bellator and TNA. That experiment hasn't been much of an experiment at all, really, and has given pause to any enthusiasm one might have for the potential of a prominent UFC name coming over to WWE.
Still, it might happen. In fact, the latest edition of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (subscription required but recommended) makes mention of a "major UFC name" being in contact with WWE soon, and it's not who you think:
A major UFC name was expected to be in contact with WWE this week about coming over in 2014. This would be someone who has the right look and his persona is better developed than 80 percent of the wrestlers in WWE and talks better than all but a few. It's also not Chael Sonnen, who is expected to wind up as a broadcaster with FOX after his career as a fighter ends, even though Sonnen has a number of friends in WWE like recruiter Gerald Brisco and Punk. But Vince McMahon has been real negative about training MMA fighters who have had any fame after his attempts to get Bob Sapp on numerous occasions failed, feeling that since Sapp would never agree to the schedule, that none of them would. And since Rampage Jackson and Tito Ortiz were two of the UFC fighters who would on paper have traits that would do well in pro wrestling, but didn't, that strengthens the viewpoint.
The only other name that comes to mind who openly discussed the possibility is Stephan Bonnar, who retired not so long ago and was on the outs with UFC President Dana White over a failed drug test. Actually, White claimed the drug test failure had something to do with Bonnar training for pro wrestling.
Bonnar's big claim to fame is his historic fight against Forrest Griffin at The Ultimate Fighter 1 Finale that led to the modern day boom in MMA, catapulting the UFC into the stratosphere and helping turn it into the veritable PPV behemoth it has become.
Is there any chance he can do something similar with WWE? Not likely.
In fact, as Dave Meltzer mentions, it seems unlikely he'll even have much luck finding an audience with the key players in power over in Stamford. This is, of course, assuming Bonnar is the guy, and it's entirely possible he is not and someone else is going to be making an attempt at crossing over.
Feel free to speculate in the comments section below.