In an interview with ProWrestlingSheet, Batista went into detail on how involved he was in the creative process during his most recent run against Triple H leading up to Wrestlemania 35. Batista revealed that he was far more involved this time around than he had been at any other point in his career because if he were to come back, he wanted it to be in a manner that made sense. He also discussed the difficulty of playing the heel against Triple H and what happened that ultimately made the creative process easier. Here are the highlights:
On How His Match With Triple H Came About:
The reason is, I said I want to go back, and I want to tease the thing with me and Triple H. Because I want to know if people are still interested. Because it had been so far removed and it has been so many years since our rivalry. I didn’t know if people would care anymore.
The ‘tease’ happened at the 1000th episode of SmackDown. The tease had people talking and once it happened both of us knew we had something to work with. We teased it and it went over great. As I was leaving, and Hunter knows I’ve wanted this match at Mania for years to end my career — I wouldn’t officially retire or even consider going into the Hall of Fame until I had this match to close out my career — but as I was leaving Hunter goes, ‘get in shape, motherf*cker.’ And I was like ‘alright, it’s on.
On Struggling With The Heel/Face Dynamic & What Happened To Make The Creative Process Easier:
I did at first, but then it was weird. It was a weird spot to be in because I didn’t realize that Hunter had been getting so much love lately, and deservedly so for everything he had done with NXT. He was just getting a lot of love. He wasn’t the heel he’d always been.
Then it got to the point where I just felt like people didn’t really care. They weren’t reading into the whole heel/babyface thing. They were reading into the nostalgic rivalry between us. And it was two guys that really just wanted to beat the hell out of each other. And they just wanted to see us beat the hell out of each other. So when I started kinda thinking more along those lines then it just became much easier. I mean, honestly, we’re both heels. People just wanted to see us go to war.
On How Involved He Was In The Creative Process:
I was completely involved. I didn’t want to go back as early as I did. They wanted me to come back to Atlanta for Ric’s 70th (birthday celebration). I thought it was too early. I said, ‘If I come back this early, what are we going to do?’ The last time I came back, they had all these weeks where they didn’t know what they wanted me to do, sent me out and I just regurgitated the same old crap. Then the people booed and they just s–t all over it. And it deserved that because it was horrible.
I said, ‘if I come back early, we got to have a plan.’ It wasn’t the plan we ended up using. They wanted us to have a beef in the ring. It was between Hunter and I. I felt if I was out there, it would be watered down. We ended up doing what we did. The whole time I’m thinking ‘God, I just hope Ric is okay.’
You can listen to the full interview HERE