The relationship between UFC and WWE has long been a contentious one, although recently there seems to be a bit of a detente between the two sides thanks to the presence of Brock Lesnar and Ronda Rousey.
Back in 2012, things weren’t so cool between the two sides and the companies were, apparently, actively working to sabotage the others. Chael Sonnen was one of UFC’s top stars at the time and ahead of his UFC 148 bout with Anderson Silva, he claims he got a call from someone with WWE with a pair of very lucrative offers.
Sonnen went on Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show on ESPN+ and detailed how he got a call with a $1 million offer to no-call, no-show his main event bout with Silva, as well as a $5 million offer to show up on Monday Night Raw the next night with the UFC title if he beat Silva — which he did not, losing by TKO in the second round.
“No-call, no-show. You cannot call and you cannot show,” Sonnen said. “I got two offers. The second one was, do show and beat him and then be on Raw with the belt on Monday. And that was a much bigger offer.
“And I said, ‘Why would you want that?’ He paused and he said, ‘To stick it up Dana White’s ass.'”
He goes on to explain that he never considered the offers, and then laid out that it was, “$1 million to no-call no-show and $5 million to be on Raw with the belt.” Sonnen insists he’s not working Helwani with this story, but it must be noted that he is only one side of it and no one on the WWE side has ever confirmed it — and UFC can’t since he says he never told them about it.
That said, I choose to believe him fully because it seems like exactly the kind of thing Vince McMahon would do. The relationship between the two companies has cooled in the seven years since this alleged offer, but it’s fascinating to think about what could’ve happened in terms of their rivalry had Sonnen accepted one of the offers.