Paul Heyman sent out several Tweets Sunday night directed at former WCW commentator Mark Madden clarifying that he’s had nothing to do with Brock Lesnar’s return to WWE. Madden had praised Lesnar’s recent WWE promos and their “Heyman” influence. While on the surface, Heyman seems to simply be giving credit where credit is due by admitting he hasn’t been involved in the promos in any way, there is actually much more to the story of why Heyman hasn’t been involved with Lesnar lately.
It wasn’t that long ago that Heyman was involved in Lesnar’s every move, at least when it came to guiding his career, but the two had a big falling out in December and have not been on good terms since. While Lesnar had been interested in a WWE return for quite some time, feeling like he’d lost his passion for MMA after dealing with several setbacks, Heyman had been adamant that he continue to pursue his UFC career. Heyman really sold Lesnar on the idea that the book he’d co-written would not only be a big hit, but would also open a lot of doors for Lesnar.
Unfortunately, sales for the book were very disappointing and none of the other opportunities Heyman had been selling Lesnar on ever materialized. The falling out between the two took place right before Lesnar’s last UFC fight, which Lesnar lost quickly before announcing his retirement from UFC after the fight. Those close to Lesnar say that Lesnar started to realize that Heyman was pressuring him to remain with UFC because Lesnar’s involvement in MMA was opening other doors for Heyman, while a return to WWE would likely result in Heyman’s involvement in Lesnar’s career either being extremely minimized or completely eliminated.
While Vince McMahon was very eager to bring Lesnar back, even offering unprecented money and the ability for Lesnar to retain his sponsors, one thing McMahon was not willing to budge on was his absolute insistance that Paul Heyman not be involved in any way whatsoever in any potential deal between WWE and Lesnar. While Heyman knew all along that his return would never be allowed, Lesnar did not realize until later the extent of the bad blood between WWE and Heyman, not to mention what a conflict of interest it was for Heyman to be advising Lesnar not to return.