No one is sure which Brock Lesnar will appear in the cage at UFC 141 against Alistair Overeem. Will it be the barely in control Lesnar from early in his UFC career, the guy who looked like he'd be happy to pluck the head off of an opponent just to watch the body twitch? Or will it be the happy go lucky Brock we saw on The Ultimate Fighter, a cage fighter who looked like he'd rather share a beer with Cain Velasquez than engage him in any uncouth fisticuffs?
His mental state seems uncertain. But the Brock Lesnar who enters the Octagon against the Strikeforce champion in December won't be a scrawny Brock Lesnar, all gangly arms, legs, and a sunken in chest. Believe it or not, there was some concern about that leading into the fight. Lesnar was expected by some to look more like Greg Gagne than Batista when he entered the cage for the first time in more than a year.
Of course that hand wringing wasn't without reason. Lesnar, who underwent extensive surgery after complications from diverticulitis continued to plague his training, made a brief public appearance for Fusion Ammunition earlier this summer. Looking gaunt and sickly, Lesnar attempted to reassure fans he would be back 100 percent. It seemed questionable at the time.
Fast forward to yesterday's press conference in Los Angeles. Lesnar, looking roughly the size of a barge, went nose to nose with Overeem. Brock, who appeared to be as gargantuan as ever, took time to address the rumors he had slimmed down significantly.
"Right now I weigh 278 pounds," the former champion said, indicating he was 13 pounds above the heavyweight limit. "Sorry for the disappointment."
Lesnar expects a tough fight from Overeem. The UFC newcomer brings a wealth of experience, kickboxing acumen, and submission chops into the cage with him. What he won't have is a size advantage. Any fantasy of slinging a diminished Lesnar across the cage like he was a super famous version of Brett Rogers must have immediately fled the Dutchman's mind.
"Alistair has done a lot of good things overseas," Lesnar told a gathered media. "He's had a lot of fights and it's an honor for me to get in the Octagon to kick his ass."
On stage, UFC President Dana White fairly beamed. "Can you imagine the heavyweight division without Brock? It would suck."