Batista is out of the 2021 WWE Hall of Fame Ceremony, but someone he once beat in a Punjabi Prison Match is going in with the two classes that will be honored on the show that airs Tues., April 6 on Peacock.
On the Indian edition of WWE Now this morning (Mar. 24), his old manager Ranjin Singh told The Great Khali that he’s a Hall of Famer.
After starting in pro wrestling with WCW and promotions in Japan & Mexico at the turn of the 21st century, Khali (real name Dalip Singh) signed with WWE in 2006. He was quickly moved to the SmackDown brand, and - logically given his 7’ 1”, 350 pound frame - pushed as an unbeatable monster. Khali moved around WWE’s three brands at the time and feuded with the company’s biggest stars, including Undertaker and John Cena.
In 2007, he won the WWE World Heavyweight championship in a battle royal when Edge was forced to vacate the belt due to an injury. Khali moved into a feud with Batista where he dropped the title to The Animal after a two month reign.
Most of the rest of his WWE run was spent in the comedy mode the company often keeps their giants in when they’re not pushing them as unbeatable. That included a lot of work with celebrities during the Raw guest host era, and some fun stuff while paired with Hornswoggle. He left WWE when his contract expired in 2014.
Since then, he’s made sporadic returns to the company, most notably during Jinder Mahal’s WWE title run in 2017. His primary work has been as an ambassador for pro wrestling & WWE in India; his induction comes months after WWE created their first event specifically for the Indian market with January’s Superstar Spectacle show.
The Great Khali remains a pretty unforgettable presence, and that combined with his status as a former WWE World champ have earned him membership in Vince McMahon’s club.