Dave Bautista Says WCW Thought He'd 'Never Make it in Professional Wrestling'

Dave Bautista is a WWE star and was one of professional wrestling's biggest names during his career. However, he didn't receive the same level of support early in his professional wrestling career. WCW reportedly told him that he would "never make it" in sports entertainment.

"21 years ago WCW told me I'd never make it in professional wrestling. I'm a spiteful person. If I wasn't I'd never had the opportunity to work with The Hurricane. you're the real deal briz #DreamChasers," Bautista tweeted on Sunday. He made this comment in response to Gregory Shane Helms, who performed as The Hurricane. Helms posted a photo showing his first WCW contract and revealed that he never actually read it.

While he didn't perform under the WCW umbrella, Bautista became a superstar in professional wrestling. He was part of Ohio Valley Wrestling early in his career and then moved to WWE. He wrestled under the name of Batista and became a six-time world champion. This included four World Heavyweight Championships and two WWE Championships. He also won the World Tag Team Championship three times, including twice with Ric Flair.

Bautista made a name for himself as a professional wrestler, but he became a household name as an actor. He portrayed Brass Body in The Man With the Iron Fists in 2012 and Riddick the following year. However, his biggest role came when he joined the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

In 2014, Bautista portrayed Drax the Destroyer in Guardians of the Galaxy. This film became a massive success and led to Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. Bautista also returned to the role for Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame. He will also star in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.

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While the longtime wrestler-turned-actor has starred in several films, he has also returned to the wrestling ring. He attacked Flair during a 2019 episode of WWE: Raw, and he also challenged Triple H to a career-ending match. The two men faced off, with Triple H winning due to Flair causing interference. Bautista announced his retirement on April 9, 2018, officially ending his wrestling career. The promotion later announced that he will be inducted into the Hall of Fame as a member of the 2020 class.

The WCW did not believe in Bautista early in his career, but he had the last laugh. He became one of WWE's biggest stars en route to the Hall of Fame. He also built a second career as an actor.