rew The Great Khali’s WWE Hall of Fame Induction in the class of 2021 is something Drew McIntyre is very pleased about and speaking to News18.com the former WWE Champion – who is set to face Bobby Lashley for the title at Wrestlemania 37 – reminisced about his time with the 7-foot tall giant traveling the world, listening to Indian music and even getting to learn some dirty words in Hindi.
“Khali is great. He is such a huge name around the world; in India, obviously; a WWE champion; people know him from movies. He is such a huge presence not just because he is over 7 foot tall, but he casts a huge aura wherever he goes,” said McIntyre and revealed how The Great Khali and Jinder Mahal were his ‘original travel car’ companions during his first run with the company (2007-2012).
“I didn’t just spend time with him in the locker room; I spent time with him in the car traveling the word. My original travel car was – myself, Jinder Mahal, and the Great Khali – and three of us would ride together every single week and I would get to know him and find out what a great guy he is. We would always have Indian music playing – so freaking catchy – like Hindi music, we would always be bobbing our heads all the time. They would teach me all the words they were saying, they would teach me some dirty words too, but they always used to tell me all about India and all the great places to visit that I have never been to before. I can’t wait to travel again and get to India.”
McIntyre has had run-ins with the Great Khali and it was the Indian wrestler who was responsible for McIntyre’s one of the shortest matches in WWE – lasting just under a minute. But, that’s a thing of the past and the 35-year-old is excited to see more Indian representation in WWE and credits The Great Khali for the inspiration.
“The fact is he (The Great Khali) is getting in the Hall of Fame, and I am very happy for him. He is a great guy and such a hero to a lot of people out there. And to see now how much Indian representation we have on our roster, it is really really cool. We recently had the WWE Superstar Spectacle and a lot of our young Indian talent were on there; Jinder was featured on the show and to see everybody step up and put on such great performances and then to hear the feedback and the numbers and the number of people that watched the show was absolutely unbelievable.
The Indian fanbase has always been a huge one for WWE and alongside the likes of Roman Reigns, Brock Lesnar, Undertaker, Johna Cena and former WWE stars like Dwanye ‘The Rock’ Jonhson, Shawan Micheals, Stone Cold Steve Austin, and McIntyre’s following is also right up there, something he is thankful about.
“The Indian fans are incredible and I see the messages all the time from the Indian fans. My wife runs my Instagram she tells me all the time, ‘you won’t believe how many people are telling you to thank you for putting on these shoes, especially during these difficult times’. I just want to say thank you to all the fans out there and I can’t wait wait to travel again and get to India for the first time ever as WWE Champions and meet everybody in person.” he added.
Fans can watch WrestleMania 37, a two night event, LIVE on SONY TEN 1 (English) and SONY TEN 3 (Hindi) channels on April 11 and April 12, 2021 from 5.30 am IST