Former WWE star Batista wins MMA debut
MANILA, Philippines – Dave Bautista, a former World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) star, won his first mixed martial arts (MMA) fight when he defeated veteran campaigner Vince Lucero in the main event of Classic Entertainment and Sports MMA: Real Pain last weekend at the Dunkin Donuts Center in Rhode Island.
Bautista, who fought in the WWE under the screen name “Batista,” won via a technical knockout in the 4:05 mark of the very first round.
Lucero was seen as a dangerous opponent for Batista, as he was a veteran of over 40 MMA fights although his win-loss record was average.
Early in the fight, Lucero was able to stun Batista with a flurry of punches that pushed the former WWE star against the cage. Batista was able to withstand Lucero's attack, however, and gained control when he took down the 300-pounder to the canvas.
Batista was able to gain top control, wherein he proceeded to punch Lucero at the head, leading to the fight being stopped.
MMA Fighting quoted Batista as saying that his "nerves got the best of me a little bit" during the start of the bout.
"He rocked me. I couldn't get my legs under me for a while. I was just so nervous. It took me a little while to get my composure," Batista said.
MMA Fighting reported that Batista and Lucero exchanged some words following the fight, though they “hugged it out” after the official results were announced.
Batista said he wants to fight again. "It was just a matter of getting this first one out of the way," he said.
"I was just so nervous. I had so many butterflies coming out, I think it got the best of me a little bit. I'm better than I showed tonight," he said.
Lucero was not Batista's original opponent. He was supposed to face Rashid Evans, but Lucero replaced him when Evans was arrested for a parole violation.
Batista quit the WWE in 2010.