We all heard the news awhile back that former WWE Champion Dave Batista has left the world of pro wrestling to attempt a career in MMA with Strikeforce as his most probable home. Much hype has centered around who his first opponent could be, with most fans having an interest in seeing Batista battle another WWE Alumni, Bobby Lashley. James Guttman of ClubWWI.com spoke with “The Boss” or “The Dominator” or whatever name Lashley is using these days, and got a response from the big man:
“I have to be honest. At first, I wouldn’t even think that he would consider it. Then again, with fighting, you never know who’s going to come over and do it. So when I heard Batista was training, I was like more power to him. Because a lot of these guys come in here and they have no experience either. But they take two jiu-jitsu classes, dye their hair blonde, and they’re automatically stepping into the fight industry.”
Lashley mentioned the training that Dave has been doing in preparation for a debut and his respect for his decision. He also made it clear that friendship or not, if it were to happen, it would be a fight.
“I’m completely open to fighting him. Friends or not, when you get in that cage and start throwing punches, the friendship goes out the window for a minute. Because I like Dave, but if we were to have a fight, we would have to close that cage door, forget about the friendship, and try to beat each other up. Then afterwards, we can shake hands and walk away.”
But things are never as easy as setting up a fight in MMA – so what is holding this back from happening? Hit the jump to find out!
Allegedly, Batista has requested $500,000 for his fight (although this nerd has not seen those allegations before so not sure where they came from). Guttman asked Lashley if he thought this is because he will be a one and done deal in MMA, and if he thinks he can really pull off a fight at that price.
“Yeah. I think it’s a measuring gauge for him. Go out there and instead of taking these small fights and working his way up, figuring ‘I’ll go out there and do the bigger fights, the more important fights, the fight the fans want to see. And of course, if I’m fighting the fight the fans want to see, I’m going to want a little more money than if I’m fighting Joe Schmo. Why not go out there and do that fight? See how I feel and if I feel healthy, if I feel strong, then I can continue on with my career. But if I go out and things don’t go the way I wanted, at least I have that big fight. I made a good amount of money and moved on.’ I don’t see anything wrong with that.”
Batista could be a huge draw for Strikeforce, as big as Brock Lesnar being in the UFC, and setting him up for a successful debut is crucial to the well-being of the promotion. Asking for big bucks is only fair, but for half a million, he might be overestimating his drawing power quite a bit. Furthermore, fighting Lashley this early in his career could be suicide, although considering how he looked in his last fight, it might not be such a long shot.
The full interview is up on ClubWWI.com, but you have to pay to join (although if you’re a pro wrestling fan, it certainly seems worth it). What do you think about Lashley VS Batista, whether it happens or not?