Jinder Mahal shocked the world at BackLash when he defeated Randy Orton to become the WWE Champion. Mahal has come a long way since his days as a comedy enhancement act with Heath Slater's 3 Man Band.
"I came to TV. I can't remember where we were. Right when I got to the building, I see Heath Slater. He's like, 'man, I just had a meeting with Vince [McMahon]. I'm going to get my own band!' [Mahal asked], 'who's going to be in it?' He said, 'I don't know, man.' Johnny Curtis wasn't Fandango at the time and he was coming to TV. Surprisingly enough, Dean Ambrose was coming to TV. [Slater said], 'well, maybe Ambrose' not knowing that [he was going to The Shield]. They had other plans for him. And I jokingly said, 'watch, I'll be in the band.' Completely joking! So Drew McIntyre is my best friend. He's like my brother, so I was hanging around Drew ringside and one of the writers called him over, Kevin Eck. Kevin Eck calls Drew over and I just stumble down the hall, 'oh, I'm going to go to catering.' I come in the hallway and I see Scotty, Scott Armstrong, 'oh, Scotty, the card's out. What do I got?' And I think it was Heath Slater versus Brodus Clay with Drew McIntyre, Jinder Mahal, and Rhyno."
Not only did The Shield plans get Mahal into 3MB, but they also ended up derailing any hopes 3MB had of becoming a legitimate WWE stable.
"The plan was a Milli Vanilli type [of lip-syncing situation]. I think even Vince was like, 'we're going to do that where you guys get caught lip-syncing' or whatever like that." Mahal continued, "at the same time, like, a week or two later, [The] Shield came and the attention was sort of shifted. I remember even at one time, we went to RAW and we weren't booked and they were like, 'Vince only wants one three-man group.' They were like, 'oh, you guys will be on SmackDown.' We weren't on SmackDown. We were on Superstars."
Mahal also admitted to his biggest regret, which came while he was a member of 3MB.
"I just kind of lost motivation, looking back now, which I never should have done. It should have motivated me more, but if you look at the shape I was in when I debuted, like, I was kind of like how I am now. I was ripped, veins everywhere. I was in good shape." Mahal admitted, "looking back it was one of my biggest regrets."
The new WWE Champion went on to admit that he deserved to be fired and it was actually the best thing that could've happened to him.
"I obviously got released. Looking back now, I would have fired me. Like, I didn't care. I was miserable. It was completely different at that time. I feel like everyone around me was just like miserable in the locker room." Mahal explained, "every week, it was like 3MB, it was nothing that was going to be positive or fun. It was 'go do something embarrassing.' Do you know what I mean? So I was just so unmotivated. I don't know. I was just in a bad place."
"Yeah, [being released was a relief], but, at the same time, it still sucks because this is my dream and all I ever wanted to do, but, at the same time, there was a little bit of, 'oh, I don't have to go to TV anymore.'" Mahal professed, "looking back now, or in five years or 10 years, I'm going to look back and be like, 'do you know what? Getting released was the best thing that ever happened to me because: a) I got into real estate; b) I kicked myself out and got remotivated. Like, to think, if I was still in that slump from 3MB till now, like, I'd be dead! You can't maintain that! I would be shot. There's no way I could do that, be that miserable, be living like that for that long, so it's almost the best thing that happened to me."