Brock Lesnar has wrestled 72 times since his return to WWE back in 2012. And while he has faced a wide variety of stars in that time, there's at least one person he wanted nothing to do with. Road Dogg (Brian James) confirmed in an interview with Wrestling Outlaws this week that WWE had to scrap the Champion vs. Champion match at Survivor Series 2017 between Lesnar and then-WWE Champion Jinder Mahal because Lesnar didn't want to work with him.
"Brock said, 'I'm not working with him.' Look, he said that about several people, by the way," James said. Mahal had been elevated from jobber to WWE Champion in a matter of months back in 2017 as WWE was looking to bring in more fans from India. Mahal became world champion by beating Randy Orton in a shocking upset at Backlash that year and after a series of disappointing rematches with "The Viper" and a few pay-per-view bouts against Shinsuke Nakamura, Mahal finally dropped the title to AJ Styles on the Nov. 7 episode of SmackDown. "The Phenomenal One" would go on to have an excellent match with Lesnar at Survivor Series, then held the WWE Championship for a full year before dropping it to Daniel Bryan.
Road Dogg viewed Mahal's main event push as a "summer experiment." Other than a United States Championship reign, Mahal hasn't been anywhere near a championship ever since.
"Brock's on another level. And so if you get somebody else that's on, like, I don't know that he's on another level in a way where he could carry a Jinder Mahal title match and make it look competitive. I don't know that he's on that level. But yeah, I don't think Jinder could do it. You call it an experiment, Chris. And I honestly think it was a summer experiment. And when Brock came back and said, 'Okay, what are we going to do?' We'll do whatever we want to until Brock comes back, and then we'll get the title on somebody to work with and we'll have a main event match," James said.
"Look, I don't think just like I think the fans kind of viewed it, it wasn't a great creative decision," he later added. "I fought it as hard as I could. But that was the decision that was made. He was going to be champion. Now look to Vince's point, we dressed him up and put those Bollywood Boys with him and we did everything we could do and looked beautiful on television. It didn't have any substance, you know."