On January 4 2010, the same night that Bischoff and Hogan debuted on Impact Wrestling, Bobby Lashley came out to the ring with his wife. Bobby Lashley stood there silent while his wife Kristal told the world that Bobby Lashley wanted an immediate release to focus on his Mixed Martial Arts career. This all seemed very sudden. There was shock. No one knew what to think of this. Weeks after, Bobby Lashley came up to Eric Bischoff and said the opposite. Lashley apologized for his actions. Instead of putting Bobby Lashley back in action, Bischoff fired him. This seemed like Bischoff wanting to have the last word on Lashley’s departure.
During Bobby Lashley’s time away from TNA Wrestling, he focused on his MMA career. I do not blame Bobby Lashley at all for taking time away from professional wrestling to go for his MMA dreams. We have seen with Rampage Jackson, Tito Ortiz, King Mo, and Bobby Lashley that doing both MMA and professional wrestling simply does not work. You might have intentions to do both at the same time but you will soon be pulled further toward one direction. Only nine days after Bobby Lashley was fired on television from TNA Wrestling, he made his debut in the MMA promotion Strikeforce. He was originally supposed to face Shane Del Rosario. At the time, Shane Del Rosario was undefeated. The idea was to put a strong respected heavyweight in Shane Del Rosario against Bobby Lashley. Someone would wind up with their first loss. For unknown reasons, this fight did not happen. Bobby Lashley ended up facing former UFC fighter Wes Sims. Lashley quickly defeated Sims in the first round by TKO. The fight officially lasted two minutes and six seconds. Bobby Lashley controlled him and dominated the fight.
Next, Lashley fought Chad Griggs at Strikeforce on August 21. Bobby Lashley, once again, dominated the fight. But there is a twist. Bobby Lashley looked gassed with a minute left in the second round. With fifty one seconds left in the second round, the referee told the fighters to stand up. Lashley took thirteen seconds to stand up. When he did, the cut above his left eye was giving him trouble. The fight stopped with thirty three seconds remaining and the doctor came in to clean up the blood. Lashley was asked if he still wanted to fight and he said yes. When the fight started, Lashley’s conditioning came into play. When you are tired, you go back to what you know best. Lashley shot in for a takedown. Griggs repeatedly punched Lashley until the round ended. After the second round, the fight was waved off. Bobby Lashley lost.
At the same time, I have a hard time saying that Chad Griggs defeated Bobby Lashley. While this may technically be true, Bobby Lashley defeated Bobby Lashley. As the saying goes, fatigue makes cowards of us all. Sadly, after the fight we learned that Bobby Lashley was suffering from mono. To Bobby Lashley’s credit, he is a beast. Lashley won three national college amateur wrestling championships between 1996 and 1998. In the years 1997 and 1998, Lashley was the NAIA National Wrestling Champion. I have very much respect for Bobby Lashley. He is a workhorse. When he has his mind set to accomplish something, he is driven. He sets goals and follows his dreams. Since the loss to Chad Griggs, Bobby Lashley has had six fights. Strikeforce was the last major MMA promotion Lashley was seen in. He went on to win five of his next six fights, leaving him currently with a 10-2 record.
Bobby Lashley returned to TNA Wrestling on March 9, 2014 at TNA’s PPV Lockdown. Lashley had not been seen in professional wrestling for over four years. He had thoughts of what the crowd would think of him and if the crowd would even remember him. Will he still be the wrestler that he was years ago? Every athlete/entertainer has these thoughts after a return. When Bobby Lashley was in TNA in 2009, he sat down with Dixie Carter in an interview. In the interview, Dixie Cater stated, “One time, I’d love to see a World Heavyweight title on his shoulder on both shoulders, where he is the king of both worlds. (MMA and professional wrestling) And that’s the goal. And we are not going to stop until we get that.”
Now that Bobby Lashley is back in TNA Wrestling, what is the plan? Where can he go from here? What is in store for Bobby Lashley? At Lockdown, Lashley answered EC3′s open challenge to face any wrestler on the roster. EC3 told Lashley that he is not on the TNA Wrestling roster and to get out of the ring. When Lashley refused, EC3 threw a punch at him. Lashley ducked and slammed Ethan Carter III before spearing him. Bobby Lashley now started feuding with EC3. The problem with this is that EC3 is also feuding with Kurt Angle and Jeff Hardy. Bobby Lashley faced Ethan Carter III on March 20. This match ended with Willow attacking EC3. We have not seen Bobby Lashley since.
It seems that he has gotten lost in TNA’s booking. TNA does not know what to do with him. Bobby Lashley is a huge star to come back to TNA. Since he has come back, nothing has really happened involving him. In the Dixie Carter interview, she stated the goal was to have Bobby Lashley as TNA World Heavyweight Champion and a MMA Champion. That was five years ago. TNA’s view of Bobby Lashley has certainly changed. Ethan Carter III had nothing to do at Lockdown after Kurt Angle being injured. TNA needed to change this. This seems like TNA quickly contacted Lashley and sent him to Lockdown for this one and done segment. They had no long term plans for him in the company. After he makes a big comeback, TNA has nothing for him. How TNA has absolutely nothing for Bobby Lashley makes no sense. Sacrifice is this Sunday on PPV. You would think that after making an impact at Lockdown, Bobby Lashley would have a match on the next PPV. He is nowhere to be found. TNA has forgotten about him. The fans have forgotten about him. All of this leads me to ask, where is Bobby Lashley?