Triple H: Remaking the Game

WWE legend Triple H 
is one of the most powerful men in sports entertainment—in and out of the ring.

When a guy has not one but two Motorhead songs written about him, calling him a badass is such an understatement it’s almost insulting. Triple H, aka Paul Michael Levesque, cemented his status as a pro wrestling legend long ago, having played a major part in the WWE’s infamous Attitude Era—when his battles with anti-hero characters like "The Rock" and outrageous antics such as flipping the bird drew record TV ratings. But with 13 world-title reigns under his belt, Triple H is now spending more time in the board room than the locker room as one of the WWE’s top executives. That said, “The Game” still laces up his boots for the occasional pay-per-view event, and, at age 46, 
is the strongest, healthiest, and most agile he’s ever been. As Lemmy Kilmister said, “Bow down to the king...”

M&F: How did you transition from performer to one of the top creative forces in the WWE?

Triple H: In some way, I’ve been doing 
it behind the scenes for years. Vince [McMahon, WWE Chairman] used to say to me, “When are you going to stop playing around and come do some real work?” Once I had kids and was looking to be home more and getting a little older, I saw it was time to make that transition. Vince sort of baited me in, saying “Why don’t you come in to the office once or twice a week on your off days?” And the next thing I know it’s, “I need you take over this department and I need you to come off the road full time.” Vince likes to call me [to wrestle] in case of emergency. I’m a character they can pull in here and there. But honestly, the less I do it at this point the better. Even wrestling once or twice a year is hard and you have to prepare for it just like if I were Floyd Mayweather preparing for a boxing match. It’s a commitment, and trying to do that with a full-time job and a wife and kids is very time-consuming.

So you enjoy the behind-the-scenes work now more than the wrestling? 

Well, being at WrestleMania in front of 75,000 people is...there’s nothing more exciting than that. But while that’s exciting in one sense, it’s just as exciting and fulfilling to me to help The Wyatts or The Shield or Big E Langston and guide them up. To help them backstage and then see them get to that level is amazing. [My wife] Steph likes to say she loves seeing me work with the younger guys. She says I’m like a proud father teaching his kids. When they come back through the curtain, I’m so excited for them. Nowadays, there’s nothing more exciting to 
me than having a kickass Raw, or seeing a guy break through to the crowd. Even seeing Daniel Bryan achieve success, even though it’s contrary to our story line [laughs], is awesome.

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