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Major news on UFC 200: Brock Lesnar is coming back

Brock Lesnar

Saturday night is a busy night in the UFC world with UFC 199 going down in Los Angeles, but there are some huge fights in the works for July's UFC 200 and August's UFC 202 that has captured the attention of fans.

In something that will get everyone talking in both wrestling and MMA, former WWE champion and former UFC heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar is returning to the organization to fight on UFC 200 against an opponent that will be announced on ESPN Monday. The news was first broken by MMA Fighting's Ariel Helwani. 

During a UFC 200 promo during UFC 199, Lesnar was shown at the very end and Mike Goldberg and Joe Rogan discussed it a bit afterward.

Lesnar is taking the fight with WWE approval. They will likely be promoting the fight during WWE broadcasts up to the event. 

Lesnar's opponent in his return will be announced Monday on ESPN.

Lesnar came close to returning to the UFC in early 2015, but ultimately decided to sign a new contract with the WWE. He hasn't fought in the cage since losing to Alistair Overeem at UFC 141 in December 2011. He came close to returning in 2012 for a fight against Fedor Emelianenko, but the deal was unable to be put together by the UFC.

UFC 200 takes place on July 9 from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, headlined by Daniel Cormier taking on Jon Jones to unify the light heavyweight title. Frankie Edgar vs. Jose Aldo for the interim featherweight title is also on the show as is former Lesnar foe Cain Velasquez vs. Travis Browne, and a host of other interesting fights.

UPDATE:  WWE has confirmed the fight.  They issued the following statement tonight:  “Brock Lesnar remains under contract to WWE, however, he has been granted a one-off opportunity to compete at UFC 200. Following this milestone event on July 9, Brock will return to WWE for SummerSlam on Sunday, August 21 live on WWE Network.”

Bryan Alvarez and Dave Meltzer will be back tonight to talk UFC 199, Brock Lesnar's return to UFC and how this deal came to pass, the Conor McGregor vs. Nate Diaz rematch being signed for UFC 202 and more.  Sign up today for full access to all of our new and archived shows (8,000 total), new and archived Wrestling Observer Newsletters and more!