Drew McIntyre returned to WWE in 2017 after a three-year hiatus, with ‘The Scottish Warrior’ crediting Triple H for bringing him back into the fold.
In April 2017, WWE was in Orlando, Florida for the festivities surrounding WrestleMania 33 week. Part of this celebration was NXT TakeOver: Orlando, which saw Drew McIntyre return to WWE after being released from the promotion in June 2014.
McIntyre’s return came as a huge surprise to fans. The former WWE Intercontinental Champion had used the three years away from Vince McMahon’s sports entertainment giant to reinvent himself, meaning that the Drew McIntyre who returned was worlds apart from the Drew McIntyre who’d been released while a 3MB member.
“I wanted a match. It’s unfortunate it won’t happen but I’m just glad he’s healthy for himself and his family. He’s the reason I’m back in WWE 100 percent. My mind was set at the time when I wasn’t going to re-sign with IMPACT that I’m going to Japan. I was made up in my mind and nothing could change my mind, but then [William] Regal, always been a mentor, gave me a call and said speak to Triple H before you make any decisions. That led to a phone call from Triple H, we spoke for about 40 minutes and my mind was made up in the first 10 minutes.”
During his time away from WWE, Drew – who competed as Drew Galloway – competed for a variety of promotions, including IMPACT Wrestling, EVOLVE, and his home promotion of Insane Championship Wrestling. All of this was done with Triple H as a viewer, as the multi-time World Champion confessed to watching Drew improve as a performer:
“Him telling me ‘I’ve been watching you’ and I’m thinking I appreciate that, Hunter, but no you haven’t [laughs]. You’re too busy, you’ve got too much to do. You’re not sitting watching Drew indie matches! But sure enough, the way he spoke about some of my matches and the way I’ve developed I was like wow, he really has been watching. Aside the fact he was proud how far I’ve come as a performer, it meant more to me how proud he was how far I’d come as a man, and he made it clear to me it was time to come home.”
Since returning, Drew McIntyre has become one of WWE’s biggest stars, enjoying two reigns as WWE Champion in 2020 after winning that year’s men’s Royal Rumble match. He’s expected to challenge Roman Reigns for the Undisputed Universal Championship over the summer period, having recently lost to Reigns and The Usos at WrestleMania Backlash alongside RK-Bro.