The five-time WWE Champion Batista tried his talent in the octagon after his first retirement stint in 2010. Towards the end of 2012, Batista decided he wanted to follow Brock Lesnar’s career path and take hil skillset to the MMA, and in comparison, should’ve just made movies. Batista had one professional bout in the octagon, and today I will dissect it and see how good “The Animal” did in MMA, if good at all.
When Brock Lesnar went to the UFC, he started off with a bang, destroying Olympic judo silver medalist Kim Min-Soo. Batista wanted to start off with a bang, facing what looked like a hotdog eating champion in his first official fight. The opponent I spoke about was Vince Lucero, who had a below average MMA career. In his career, Vince went 22-26, losing by knockout a total of fourteen times, or 54% of his fights. But nonetheless, facing someone with over 40 fights in his career is still a tall task in your first bout. Batista was at the ripe old age of 43 for his first fight, resembling ex-professional wrestler CM Punk, also starting at a late age. Batista came into the fight weighing in at 265.5 pounds, a weight cut from his WWE days, looking more shredded than ever. Vince Lucero came into the bout weighing in at exactly 300 pounds, looking like a less powerful Butter Bean. In the UFC, the max weight for the heavyweight division is 265 pounds, making this a super-heavyweight fight, something that has never occured in UFC history.
Dave Bautista looked visibly nervous getting into his first fight, like a deer in headlights, a spot “The Animal” was not used to being in. In the first round Batista held his own, landing several overhand rights, keeping the fight on their feet for the first three minutes. For the next minute, Batista goes for a take down, almost stalling on the ground. After a full sixty seconds of ground work and punches that felt longer than his retirement speech, Batista was deemed winner by knockout after Vince Lucero laid face first as Batista sat trying to get offense in. Batista had his arm raised in what felt like if LeBron James beat a middle school basketball player. In the post fight interview, Batista repeatedly said how nervous he was for the bout, something that didn’t need to be said. After the less than convincing win over a near retirement journeyman Batista attempted to work a deal with Strikeforce for months after his first bout, all falling through once UFC bought the promotion, wanting nothing to do with Batista and UFC.
Batista’s one off MMA fight was nothing special, but you have to give “The Animal” credit for stepping into the octagon, a task few WWE stars have dared to attempt. While I would never want to see it again, I have all the respect in the world for Batista, even as lackluster as his fight was. Maybe he should stick to Hollywood and ruining Royal Rumbles. Thank you all for reading, Shaney out.