Brock Lesnar vs Batista Was WWE’s Biggest Missed Opportunity

Hamish Woodward

Brock Lesnar vs Batista

Two of the biggest stars of the mid 2000s in the WWE never stepped inside the ring together. It seems impossible that two giants of the industry would not wrestle each other, given the fact they intersected in (or near) their primes in wrestling.

In the WWE, Brock Lesnar vs Batista never happened. A shocking fact which I’m sure you must be thinking is false. But, alas, it is not. Despite both debuting on the main roster in 2002, Batista never wrestled a singles match against Brock Lesnar on TV, nor on house shows or Pay Per View. This is a huge shame and a wasted opportunity, especially given that WWE was so high on them.

While it would have been an incredible match, their early years may have been too soon. Both debuted in 2002, but Lesnar was gone from the company by 2004. He was burnt out from wrestling and the constant travel, so called it a day after a Wrestlemania XX defeat to Goldberg. Batista remained in the company and became one of the top stars with feuds against John Cena, Undertaker and Triple H, but that elusive bout with the Beast remained a pipe dream.

Batista was a part of Evolution during this time, alongside Triple H, Randy Orton and Ric Flair. They spearheaded the main event scene on Raw during a time in which the brand split was taken incredibly seriously. Meanwhile, Lesnar was the WWE Champion and made Smackdown his home, giving the two superstars zero chance of facing off outside of Royal Rumble appearances.

Batista would then joined Lesnar in walking out of the company in 2010. As bad luck would have it, just two years later would see Brock return to the WWE after a dominant run in the UFC. He would feud with top stars like John Cena and Triple H, although would have loved to lock horns with The Animal.

The two were rumoured to wrestle at Wrestlemania 30. Early plans for the big show had Batista vs Brock Lesnar booked for a huge first time match. However that early card was changed completely over the months prior, with Batista also rumoured to wrestle Randy Orton and Lesnar penciled in for a match against The Rock.

Instead, Royal Rumble winner Batista lost in a triple threat main event to Daniel Bryan, while Brock Lesnar took the biggest scalp in wrestling history when he ended The Undertaker’s undefeated streak at Wrestlemania. It’s had to say either was a demotion from the potential Beast vs Animal match, but fans will always wonder what could have happened.

It’s not the first time WWE has missed the boat on some huge dream matches. Sting vs The Undertaker is a match they could have done at Wrestlemania 31, but instead settled for some overbooked nonsense with Sting and Triple H. Steve Austin vs Hulk Hogan never happened due to backstage politics and Shawn Michaels facing Eddie Guerrero was nixed due to the latter’s untimely death.

Batista vs Brock Lesnar

What could have been?

Despite the match never being seen by WWE fans, Brock Lesnar vs Batista did happen, in a way, in a different promotion altogether. The pair were part of the legendary class of trainee wrestlers in Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW) that dominated the main event scene in the WWE for the next decade.

Joining John Cena, Randy Orton and Shelton Benjamin, Brock Lesnar and Batista came through WWE developmental together. He teamed with Benjamin as “The Minessota Stretching Crew” and was earmarked as a star from day one inside the training centre.

Batista also trained with the group when he joined the WWE, but under a different name. He was known as Leviathan, a demonic monster character which he unfortunately did not bring to the main roster. He was positioned as one of the top stars of the tiny promotion and was booked as an unstoppable monster.

Brock Lesnar vs Batista took place in OVW on September 28th, 2001. Both wrestlers had yet to make their debut on the main roster but this bout seemed like a hint at what could come in the next few years. A Wrestlemania main event between this two was not inconceivable but, as we now know, it would never come to fruition.

Who do you think would have won in a Wrestlemania match between Brock Lesnar and Batista?

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