On April 1, World Wrestling Entertainment filed a 29 page response to Brock Lesnar’s lawsuit against them. The document noted that it is their opinion, Lesnar’s lawsuit is without merit as he agreed to the terms following his 2004 release.
WWE went on to claim that was Lesnar was in violation of the agreement for his release by appearing at a show for New Japan in January. WWE has also asked for the court to rule that Lesnar has breached their agreement, has forfeited any money owed to him for royalties, that Lesnar be barred from competing for any sports-entertainment or mixed-martial arts companies, that the court prevent Lesnar from further breaching their release agreement and any “further relief” the court might declare.
The following are a few bullet points on WWE’s case:
*Brock Lesnar voluntarily agreed to the terms of his release when he decided he wanted to play professional football. WWE claims that Lesnar was aware of the usage of the term “ultimate fighting” when he asked for a release and that it would include Mixed Martial Arts competition. They also claim Lesnar knew he wouldn’t be able to work for a “sports-entertainment” company. Their settlement agreement ends on 6/10/10 and shouldn’t be forced to change because Lesnar was unsuccessful at football. They also claim that the release settlement allowed them to retain his licensing rights, with the exception of NFL-related endeavors.
*The company admits that they haven’t paid Lesnar from his booking contract since he asked for a release to pursue his NFL career, but noted he had been paid $125,000 in royalties since that point.
*WWE contends that Lensar’s appearance at the January 2005 New Japan Pro Wrestling Tokyo Dome event (where he was introduced and came to a ringside seat with Brad Rheighans and Rena Mero during the show from backstage) was in violation of their agreement terms for his release. Lesnar’s appearance at the show and it airing in Japan, were both in violations of his release.
*WWE believes that Lesnar entered into negotiations with New Japan to participate in a May 2005 event.
*WWE has suffered “irreparable harm” from Lesnar’s breach of their agreement.
*WWE contends that by appearing at the New Japan event, he has forfeited all due and future royalty payments and has not paid him since that time. It appears WWE ending the royalty payments in January may have paved the way for Lesnar to file the lawsuit the following month.
*WWE admitted to not bringing Brock Lesnar back into the company after washing out on his NFL aspirations, but noted Lesnar “has attempted to use the settlement agreement against WWE, and has made exorbitant financial and other demands which would grant Lesnar, as compared to his 2003 Booking Contract, much more favorable terms.”
*WWE has also rejected his terms for wanting to return due to actions have diminished his value, noting “vulgar, derogatory and disparaging hand gestures” to the fans at Wrestlemania XX in Madison Square Garden. WWE claims they would need to invest extra money in order to build Lesnar back up as a performer after that incident, disparging comments made about the company, and Lesnar’s previous decision to walk away from his old contract.
*WWE claimed they felt the need to enforce the terms of their settlement contract with Lesnar after he appeared at the New Japan Tokyo Dome event and in response to a threat by Lesnar to file a lawsuit against the company.
*WWE shoots down Lesnar’s contention that anyone could be in his position as champion because 13 other performers had held the belt since his departure. WWE noted that they use the championships as a way to promote their talents and increase their popularity and worth to the WWE fan base.