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"It's really one of the most difficult challenges I've ever faced" - Triple H on his full-time WWE return in 2016

Triple H says his return to the ring full-time with WWE in 2016 was the biggest challenge of his career.
Triple H says his return to the ring full-time with WWE in 2016 was the biggest challenge of his career.
Matt Black
Modified 11 Jan 2021, 07:14 IST

Triple H has had a storied career in WWE. But every career in wrestling presents various challenges that catch the competitors by surprise. When it comes to Triple H's full-time return to the ring for WWE in 2016, "The Game" wasn't expecting this development. As a result, it proved to be the most difficult test in his legendary career.

"The King of Kings" is one of the most iconic superstars in WWE history. He's a future first-ballot WWE Hall of Famer. (He has already been inducted as a member of D-Generation X. ) But by 2016, he was arguably more than a decade removed from his prime. Few fans expected him to regain his status as a full-time competitor in 2016.

Triple H was recently a guest on WWE's The Bump, and he discussed various topics before the NXT New Year's Evil show. But the hosts certainly wanted to talk to "The Cerebral Assassin" about his own incredible WWE career. His final full-time run in 2016 with the company came up in the conversation. Here, "The Father of NXT" made it clear that this transition was quite daunting.

"Absolutely, because it was completely out of the blue and completely unplanned in a way. There was a moment in time with injuries and everything that was happening in the company where, you know, I sort of got to a place in my career where Vince [McMahon] would joke that I was the in case of an emergency, break glass [guy]. So, I'd be sitting there with my trunks on. He'd tell me, 'Okay. You're my in case of an emergency guy, we're breaking the glass, and here's what we're going to do.' And you're like, 'Oh, my God.' I don't believe I've ever done anything harder in my career than have moments where you don't wrestle for an entire year or a long, long period of time. Then you come out and do whatever it is at the highest level, you know, to try to add to the stuff you've done without letting others or yourself down. It's really one of the most difficult challenges I've ever faced. The pressure was immense," said Triple H.

Triple H admitted that Vince McMahon has always turned to him when the company needs "The King of Kings." He has always done his best to deliver, but Triple H didn't hide the fact that it can be difficult to perform at a high level after a lengthy hiatus.

Triple H thought he might be forced to retire before his WWE return in 2002

Triple H in WWE
Triple H in WWE

2016 wasn't the only intimating obstacle Triple H faced in his WWE career. Before his triumphant return from a quad injury in 2002, he questioned whether he would ever be able to wrestle again.

"It's hard to sort of put into words the journey at that point in time because, you know, there was a high probability I might've not been able to wrestle again. Coming back and having the return I did at Madison Square Garden, and the reaction I got was great. The challenge was: How do you capitalize on that? So, to come back at the Royal Rumble, there's so much meaning there. Not only from a performer's standpoint but from an athlete's standpoint, of the validation to be able to do this still," said Triple H.
Published 11 Jan 2021, 07:13 IST
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