Despite what you may think, WWE and UFC have plenty in common. They both feature a roster of charismatic competitors, both have dedicated fanbases and both rely on theatrics and showmanship in order to build tension to an event.
In fact, one could argue that the predetermined nature of WWE is the only significant difference.
Nonetheless, both Vince McMahon and Dana White respectively have claimed superiority over the other. However, when you really break it down, both heavily rely on the other. Don’t believe me? Well, here’s the breakdown…
Whether or not UFC care to admit it, their biggest draw since their inception in 1993 has been Brock Lesnar – a former NCAA Division One heavyweight wrestling champion, and a former multi-time WWE Champion, long before he stepped into the Octagon 2008. To make matters worse for die hard UFC fans, later that year at UFC 91, Brock Lesnar become UFC Heavyweight Champion.
That’s right, UFC’s top prize was held by a professional wrestler.
UFC even organized a deal with WWE so that they could book Brock Lesnar to fight at their UFC 200 event in June 2016.
On the contrary, WWE have always capitalized on former MMA fighters. Back in the 90s, both Ken Shamrock and Dan Severn (both former UFC competitors) jumped ship to the WWE. Sure, they never reached the heights of The Rock or Stone Cold Steve Austin, but they certainly played their part in WWE’s attitude era.
And even to this day, the current WWE Universal Champion is Brock Lesnar. That’s right, one of WWE’s top prizes is held by a former UFC champion. (Not only that, but WWE has deliberately moved away from Lesnar’s former wrestling skillset, and had him compete as a “shoot” fighter.)
Then there’s the multiple appearances of UFC fighters in WWE in recent years. Ronda Rousey appearing at Wrestlemania 31 alongside The Rock, Triple H and Stephanie McMahon, all the way to 2017 where WWE have signed one of the UFC’s Four Horsewomen, Shayna Baszler, to a developmental contract.
Say what you want, but despite being completely different sports/entertainment spectacles, the WWE and UFC rely on each other as competition in order to thrive.