You can’t have as much in ring success as Batista without making some foes along the way. Here are Batista’s greatest rivals.
Batista’s WWE career started in May 2002, alongside Reverend D-Von. But, it truly launched when he aligned with Triple H, Randy Orton and Ric Flair to form Evolution. By the 2005 Royal Rumble match, Batista was established himself as a future world champion. This was a problem for reigning World Heavyweight Champion, Triple H. Batista won the Royal Rumble match, and despite The Cerebral Assassin’s best efforts Batista set his sight on the World Heavyweight title at WrestleMania 21. The Animal dominated on The Show of Shows, the followed up with a brutal victory inside Hell in a Cell.
When Triple H instructed Batista to literally drop Randy Orton from Evolution, it kick started a decade long rivalry. Batista put Orton on the shelf after a physical match in the wake of WrestleMania 21 in April 2005. Batista’s first win on SmackDown came in June 2002 against a team that featured The Viper.
They met again in 2008, with Batista scoring a pinfall victory at WWE Armageddon, but this time Orton put The Animal out of action to close the year. Batista returned after WrestleMania and targeted Orton, who was now WWE Champion. The Animal punished Orton inside a steel cage to win the title ay WWE Extreme Rules 2009. But following night, Orton broke his arm. Batista got one final No Hold Barred win over The Apex Predator in September 2009. And ultimately, the only thing that could bring peace to Batista and Orton was their mutual hatred of Daniel Bryan at WrestleMania 30.
There can only be one face of WWE and a showdown over rising stars, Batista and John Cena was inevitable. Batista & Cena’s first match against each other in WWe was a tag team bout in August 2002 It took until Summerslam 2008 for Batista and Cena to face off one-on-one, with The Animal standing tall after Cena suffered an injury. But things were far from over.
Two years later, after Cena endured during an Elimination Chamber match, Mr. McMahon forced him to defend his WWE title against Batista in a one sided impromptu bout. So, the rivalry ran for the rest of Spring 2010. And after Cena defeated Batista at WrestleMania & Extreme Rules, they faced off for a final time in an I Quit match. When Cena forced Batista to quit, the defeat was so devastating that Batista quit WWE entirely.
From 2005 to 2007, Batista had asserted himself as the top dog on the blue brand. But the Animal had yet to cross paths with The Undertaker. When The Phenom won the 2007 Royal Rumble Match, the stage was set for two beasts to collide for the World Heavyweight title at WrestleMania 23. The outcome was a series of physical bouts for the championship and supremacy over the blue brand.
Batista and Undertaker teamed up four times between Royal Rumble 2007 and their match at WrestleMania 23. They fought inside a steel cage and Hell in a Cell before colliding in a Last Man Standing match. The bout ended with Batista spearing The Deadman off the stage causing the entrance set to collapse on the top of them. Quite simply, these two competitors punished each other every time they share a ring.
Batista’s obsession to become World Champion once again cost him a friendship with Rey Mysterio. The Animal seemed poised to leave WWE Bragging Rights 2009 with the World Heavyweight title. He dominated in a fatal 4-way match against Undertaker, CM Punk & best friend, Rey Mysterio. With Batista a moment from winning the bout, Mysterio broke up the pinfall to stay in the match.
After ultimately coming up short, Batista pointed the blame entirely at his friend and he maliciously attacked Mysterio. At Survivor Series, The Greatest Mask of All the Time threw everting he could at Batista but the Animal dominated to the tune of three Batista Bombs before the ref called the match. They weren’t finished, though, colliding again in a street fight and inside a steel cage.