Wrestling News

Former WWE Champion Says He Was “Broke” After First WWE Run

Randy Orton with Evolution

A former WWE Champion has discussed the financial difficulties he found himself in after he originally left WWE, saying he was left with nothing.

Batista was a huge star in WWE, evolving out of Evolution alongside Triple H, Randy Orton, and Ric Flair to become World Heavyweight Champion at WrestleMania 21. From there The Animal found himself sharing top billing with the likes of Eddie Guerrero, The Undertaker, and John Cena throughout his storied career.

Batista chose to walk away from the wrestling ring in 2010 as he embarked on a career in Hollywood. Speaking to IGN, the two-time WWE Champion discussed how he faced financial ruin before landing the role of Drax in the smash hit Guardians Of The Galaxy.

Batista explained:

“For people to really understand how much my life has changed, they would have to understand where I came from, what I went through when I was in wrestling, what I left behind to take a chance on going into acting,” Bautista told IGN. “And when I got the role of Drax in Guardians, I barely worked in three years. So I’d really left wrestling behind and I could have gone back with my tail between my legs, but I still [would] have been just stuck in a place that I never would have gone any further, but I just took a chance. And then when I got [cast], not only because I was broke, [everything changed]. When I say broke, my house was foreclosed, I had nothing, man. I sold all my stuff. I sold everything that I made from [when] I was wrestling. I had issues with the IRS. I was just lost in everything.”

“It wasn’t many years [earlier] when I was just like borrowing money to pay for food, pay for rent. Borrow money to buy my kids Christmas presents. It wasn’t long before all that stuff [had happened]. So it happened for me fast, which made it seem even that much more surreal. But it did, it changed my life. It gave me a life.”

Following his success in Hollywood, The Animal made an infamous return to WWE in 2014 where he won the Royal Rumble although his main event match for the WWE Heavyweight Championship was overshadowed by ‘Yes-leMania’ and the exploits of Daniel Bryan. Batista soon walked away from the business again only to return in 2019 for a WrestleMania match against long-time friend Triple H.

Credit: IGN