Brock Lesnar debut match in WWE was twenty years now, and in the years since he has dominated both inside the squared circle and in the Octagon. In his first two years in WWE, he won the King of the Ring, WWE Championship, the Royal Rumble and became one of the top stars in all of wrestling.
In WWE The Next Big Thing had incredible feuds against the likes of Kurt Angle, Big Show and The Undertaker. Between 2002 and 2004, he main event Wrestlemania against Kurt Angle, faced Big Show for the WWE Championship at Survivor Series and battle The Undertaker inside Hell in a Cell in one of the best matches ever.
Brock Lesnar also main event Summerslam in his debut year in wrestling, defeating none other than The Rock in the main event of The Biggest Party of the Summer. It was an incredible moment, less than six months after his WWE debut, and proof that WWE was trying to build new stars after the failure that was the Invasion of WCW & ECW to WWE in 2001.
Brock Lesnar was the youngest ever world champion in WWE history when he defeated The Rock, until his record was beaten by Randy Orton two years later. He later went on to become an 11 time world champion over both WWE and NJPW. He also became the World Heavyweight Champion in UFC during his hiatus from wrestling.
Brock Lesnar’s Debut
Brock Lesnar’s debut match came against Jeff Hardy at Backlash 2002. He defeated Jeff Hardy by knockout after delivering such a beating that Jeff Hardy could not respond to the referees count. It was a dominating debut that came after weeks of absolute destruction from Brock Lesnar on Monday Night Raw.
In the weeks building up the match, he attacked wrestlers like The Hardy Boyz, Al Snow, Maven and Spike Dudley en route to facing Jeff Hardy at Backlash 2002. Brock Lesnar debuted on the Monday Night Raw after Wrestlemania X8, and attacked the latter three wrestlers during their Hardcore Championship match.
Brock Lesnar’s debut year was perhaps the greatest debut year in the history of wrestling. He started by winning the King of the Ring in 2002, earning himself a shot at The Rock’s WWE Championship at Summerslam 2002. He defeated Bubba Ray Dudley, Booker T and Test en route to the final, where he defeated Rob Van Dam in the finals to become the King of the Ring.
He went on to defeat The Rock at Summerslam 2002, completing one of the most meteoric rises the history of wrestling. Not since the likes of The Big Show (who as The Giant won the WCW Championship in his first match) has anyone ascending to world champion in such a short space of time.
He has since gone on to achieve great things in the WWE. He has won 11 world championships, which include a stint as the IWGP Heavyweight Champion in New Japan. He has also achieved arguably the greatest accomplishment in wrestling history, when he defeated the Undertaker at Wrestlemania. At Wrestlemania 30, he become the first man (of two, when Roman Reigns later defeated The Undertaker at Wrestlemania 33) to beat the Undertaker at Wrestlemania and break his 21-0 undefeated streak.
None of those accolades would have been realised if Brock Lesnar’s debut and his first year in WWE had not been one of the most incredible shows on dominance WWE and wrestling has ever seen.
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Hamish is a writer and podcaster and wrestling fan who is a key part of the Atletifo team.
After playing countless hours of WrestleMania X8 on the Gamecube, he discovered Rey Mysterio getting his head crushed by The Great Khali, and thus a love for professional wrestling was born.
He is also a Media Graduate, as well as writing for multiple sites about Premier League football and the culture of Wales – his home country.