Batista Reportedly Booked for Next Week's WWE Raw

Batista made his return to WWE television on this week's Monday Night Raw, attacking Ric Flair in the closing moments of the show.

According to PWInsider, which broke the original story that Batista was backstage for Raw hours before the show, the former WWE Champion will be back on Raw next week to continue the build to a WrestleMania match between he and Triple H.

The final segment of this week Raw featured Triple H, Stephanie McMahon, Sting, Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat and Shawn Michaels all in the ring to celebrate Ric Flair's 70th birthday. However Flair never appeared after his music hit, and the broadcast quickly cut to backstage where Batista was seen dragging a camera man up to Flair's dressing room. He then pulled an unconscious Flair out into the hallway and looked directly at the camera.

"Hey Hunter, do I have your attention now? Huh?" he said.

Triple H ran backstage to check on Flair, but Batista was nowhere to be found.

Batista, real name Dave Bautista, hasn't wrestled consistently for the WWE since 2014 due to his acting career taking off with his role in Guardians of the Galaxy. However he has consistently campaigned for a return match against Triple H in various interviews. According to The Wrap, the WWE now has that match booked for WrestleMania 35 on April 7 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey.

The pair have more than a decade of history to work on, going back to their days as part of the Evolution faction. After winning the 2005 Royal Rumble match, Batista turned babyface by challenging then-World Heavyweight Champion Triple H to a match at WrestleMania 21. "The Animal" won the bout to capture his first of six world championships, and the two would continue to feud for several months until Batista beat "The Game" inside a Hell in a Cell match at the Vengeance pay-per-view.


After leaving the company in 2010, Batista returned to the fold in 2014 and won that year's Royal Rumble mach as well to face Randy Orton for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. However a massive backlash from fans caused WWE to change plans, turning Batista heel and inserting Daniel Bryan into the title match at WrestleMania XXX.

After both Orton and Batista lost to Bryan in the main event, the pair aligned themselves with Triple H to reform Evolution to start a feud with The Shield. After losing back-to-back pay-per-views against the young trio, Batista quit the company once again.