Triple H

Triple H
Triple H

Triple H during his ring entrance.
Ring name(s) Triple H
Hunter Hearst Helmsley
Jean-Paul Lévesque
Terra Ryzin
Billed height 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)[1]
Billed weight 255 lb (116 kg)[1]
Born July 27, 1969 (1969-07-27) (age 42)[2]
Nashua, New Hampshire
Resides Greenwich, Connecticut
Billed from Greenwich, Connecticut[1]
Trained by Killer Kowalski[1]
Debut March 24, 1992

Paul Michael Levesque[3] (born July 27, 1969)[4] is an American professional wrestler, professional wrestling authority figure, WWE Executive Vice President of Talent and actor, better known by his ring name Triple H, an abbreviation of the ring name, Hunter Hearst Helmsley. As of July 2011, the Triple H character appears on WWE programming as the Chief Operating Officer of WWE and as a semi-active wrestler.

Levesque began his wrestling career in the International Wrestling Federation as Terra Ryzing before joining World Championship Wrestling (WCW) in 1994. After briefly using the Ryzing name, he changed his character to Jean-Paul Lévesque, a French-Canadian aristocrat[4] which would be similar to his character Hunter Hearst Helmsley, that he used in his early years with the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) from 1995 onward.[5] He later abbreviated his name to Triple H and adopted an alternative image in the stable D-Generation X (DX). After the dissolution of DX, Triple H was pushed as a main event wrestler, winning several singles championships.[1] As part of a storyline Triple H married Stephanie McMahon, who later became his real-life spouse. In 2003, Triple H formed another stable known as Evolution,[1] and reformed DX with Shawn Michaels in 2006 and 2009.[6]

Overall, Levesque has won 23 championships in WWE, including 13 World Championships, having won the WWF/E Championship eight times, and the World Heavyweight Championship five times.[7][8] He has the highest total number of world title reigns sanctioned in WWE. In addition, Helmsley won the 1997 King of the Ring, the 2002 Royal Rumble, and was the second Grand Slam Championship winner. Outside of wrestling, Helmsley has made numerous guest appearances in film and on television.


Professional wrestling career

Early life

Paul Levesque was born in Nashua, New Hampshire.[9] In his youth, he was a fan of professional wrestling and his favorite wrestler was Ric Flair.[citation needed] Levesque became aware of bodybuilding at the age of fourteen; after graduating from high school in 1987, Levesque entered several bodybuilding competitions.[10] He was crowned Teenage Mr. New Hampshire in 1988.[11]

World Championship Wrestling (1994–1995)

In early 1994, Levesque signed a one year contract with World Championship Wrestling (WCW).[11][12] In his first televised match, Levesque debuted as a villain named Terror Risin' and defeated Keith Cole.[13] His ring name was soon modified to Terra Ryzing, which he used until mid-1994, when he was renamed Jean-Paul Lévesque.[5][14] This gimmick referred to his surname's French origins and he was asked to speak with a French accent, as he could not speak French.[15] During this time, he began using his finishing maneuver, the Pedigree.

Levesque had a brief storyline feud with Alex Wright that ended at Starrcade 1994[5] with Wright pinning him.[16] Between late 1994 and early 1995, Levesque briefly teamed with Lord Steven Regal, whose snobby British persona was similar to Levesque's character.[14] The team was short-lived, however, as Levesque left for the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) in January 1995 after WCW turned down his request to be pushed as a singles competitor.

World Wrestling Federation / Entertainment

The Connecticut Blueblood (1995–1997)

As a continuation of his gimmick in WCW, Levesque started his WWF career as the "Connecticut Blueblood" Hunter Hearst Helmsley.[15] Levesque appeared in taped vignettes, in which he talked about how to use proper etiquette, up until his wrestling debut on the April 30, 1995 episode of WWF Wrestling Challenge.[17]

Hunter Hearst Helmsley in 1996

Although he was heavily pushed in the first few months after his debut, Levesque's career stalled during 1996, starting off with being mired in a feud with Duke "The Dumpster" Droese following a loss during the Free for All at 1996 Royal Rumble.[18][19] Up until that event, his angle included appearing on television each week with a different female valet (which included Playboy Playmates Shae Marks and Tylyn John).[5] Sable was his valet at WrestleMania XII, and after his loss to Ultimate Warrior,[20] as part of the storyline, he took his aggressions out on her. The debuting Marc Mero—her real-life husband—came to her rescue, starting a feud between the two wrestlers.[21]

During 1996, Helmsley appeared on an episode of WWF Superstars in a match against Marty Garner.[22] When Levesque attempted to perform the Pedigree, Garner mistook the maneuver for a double underhook suplex and tried to jump up with the move, causing him to land squarely on top of his head and suffer neck damage.[22] Garner sued the WWF, eventually settling out of court and later discussed the incident in an appearance on The Montel Williams Show.

The MSG Incident

Levesque was known backstage as one of the members of The Kliq, a group of wrestlers including Shawn Michaels, Kevin Nash, Sean Waltman and Scott Hall, who were known for influencing Vince McMahon and the WWF creative team.[18] It has been claimed that he was scheduled to win the 1996 King of the Ring tournament, but the victory was instead awarded to Stone Cold Steve Austin after the Madison Square Garden Incident, in which the Kliq broke character after a match to say goodbye to the departing Nash and Hall.[23] Despite the punishment, Helmsley did have several successes following the MSG Incident. Mr. Perfect became his manager and he won the WWF Intercontinental Championship for the first time on October 21, 1996, defeating Marc Mero.[21][23] When Mr. Perfect left the WWF, his departure was explained to be a result of Helmsley turning his back on his manager as soon as he won the Intercontinental Championship. Levesque held the belt for nearly four months before dropping it to Rocky Maivia on the February 13, 1997 special edition of Monday Night Raw, called Thursday Raw Thursday.[24] For a very brief time, Helmsley was accompanied by Mr. Hughes, who was his storyline bodyguard.[25] After losing the Intercontinental title, he feuded with Goldust, defeating him at WrestleMania 13.[26] During their feud, Chyna debuted as his new bodyguard.[27]

D-Generation X (1997–1999)

Helmsley's push resumed in 1997, when he won the 1997 King of the Ring tournament by defeating Mankind in the finals.[23][28] Later that year, Shawn Michaels, Helmsley, Chyna and Rick Rude formed D-Generation X (DX). This stable later became known for pushing the envelope, as Michaels and Helmsley made risqué promos—spawning the catchphrase "Suck It", using a "crotch chop" hand motion,[29] and sarcastically deriding Bret Hart and Canada. By that point, Helmsley had fully dropped the "blueblood snob" gimmick, appearing in T-shirts and leather. During this period, his ring name was shortened to simply Triple H.[23] Even after the DX versus Hart Foundation storyline ended, Helmsley continued to feud with the sole remaining member Owen Hart over the WWF European Championship. This ended in a match between the two at WrestleMania XIV, with the stipulation that Chyna had to be handcuffed to then-Commissioner Sgt. Slaughter. Helmsley won after Chyna threw powder into Slaughter's eyes, momentarily "blinding" him and allowing her to interfere in the match.

After WrestleMania, Michaels was forced into temporary retirement due to a legitimate back injury sustained at the Royal Rumble,[30] with Triple H taking over the leadership position in DX,[23] claiming that his now-former associate had "dropped the ball". He introduced the returning X-Pac the night after WrestleMania and joined forces with the New Age Outlaws.[23][31] As 1998 went along, D-Generation X became more popular, turning the group from villains to fan-favorites. It was also during this time that Triple H began a feud with the leader of the Nation of Domination and rising WWF villain, The Rock.[10] This storyline rivalry eventually led to a feud over the Intercontinental Championship, which Triple H won in a ladder match at SummerSlam.[10] He did not hold the title long, however, as he was sidelined with a legitimate knee injury.[10] When The Rock won the WWF Championship at Survivor Series,[32] the rivalry between the two continued, as DX fought The Corporation stable, of which The Rock was the main star. Triple H received a shot at the WWF Championship on the January 25, 1999 edition of Raw in an "I Quit" match against The Rock, but the match ended when Triple H was forced to quit or see his aide Chyna chokeslammed by Kane.[10] This began a new angle for Triple H, as Chyna betrayed him by attacking him after the match and joining The Corporation.[10]

At WrestleMania XV, Triple H beat Kane with the aid of Chyna, who was thought to have rejoined DX.[10] Later on in the night, he betrayed his long-time friend and fellow DX member X-Pac by helping Shane McMahon retain the European Championship and joined The Corporation.[10] turning heel in the process. After Triple H's heel turn in early 1999, he moved away from his DX look, taping his fists for matches, sporting new and shorter wrestling trunks, and adopting a shorter hairstyle.[10] Levesque's gimmick changed as he fought to earn a WWF title shot.[10] After numerous failed attempts at winning the championship, Triple H and Mankind challenged WWF Champion Stone Cold Steve Austin to a Triple Threat match at SummerSlam, which featured Jesse "The Body" Ventura as the special guest referee. Mankind won the match by pinning Austin.[33] The following night on Raw, Triple H defeated Mankind to win his first WWF Championship.[10]

Triple H dropped the WWF Championship to Vince McMahon on the September 16, 1999 edition of SmackDown! before regaining it at Unforgiven in a Six-Pack Challenge that included Davey Boy Smith, Big Show, Kane, The Rock, and Mankind. He defeated Stone Cold Steve Austin at No Mercy before dropping the title to Big Show at Survivor Series. Triple H then continued his feud with Vince McMahon by marrying his daughter, Stephanie McMahon. He then defeated McMahon at Armageddon. As a result of the feud, an angle with Triple H and Stephanie McMahon began which carried the WWF throughout the next seventeen months; together they were known as the "McMahon-Helmsley Faction".[34]

McMahon–Helmsley Era (2000–2001)

By January 2000, Triple H dubbed himself "The Game," implying that he was on top of the wrestling world and was nicknamed "The Cerebral Assassin" by Jim Ross. On the January 3 edition of Raw is War, Triple H defeated The Big Show to win his third WWF championship.[35]

Triple H feuded with Mick Foley in early 2000. They both fought at the Royal Rumble in a Street Fight Match for the WWF Championship, which Triple won after doing two pedigrees on Foley. The storyline would come to an end at No Way Out in a Hell in a Cell where if Mick Foley lost he would have to retire. Triple H retained his title at the PPV and thus ending Mick Foley's fifteen year career. Triple H pinned The Rock at WrestleMania 2000 to retain the title,[36] but lost it at Backlash to The Rock.[37] He regained it three weeks later, in an Iron Man match at Judgment Day,[38] only to lose it back to The Rock at King of the Ring.[39] Triple H then entered a storyline feud with Chris Jericho, which culminated in a Last Man Standing match at Fully Loaded.[39]

A later storyline feud between Triple H and Steve Austin started when it emerged that Triple H had paid off Rikishi to run down Austin at Survivor Series, causing him to take a year off. In reality, Austin's previous neck injuries started bothering him again, forcing him to have surgery. In 2000, Triple H and Austin had a match at Survivor Series that ended when Triple H tried to trick Austin into coming into the parking lot to run him over again, only to have Austin lift his car up with a forklift and flip the car onto its roof 10 feet high. Triple H returned a few weeks later and attacked Austin. The feud continued into 2001 and ended in a Three Stages of Hell match in which Helmsley defeated Austin. In 2001, Triple H also feuded with The Undertaker, who defeated him at WrestleMania X-Seven.[40] The night after WrestleMania, Triple H interfered in a steel cage match between Austin (who had just won the WWF Championship) and The Rock where he joined forces with Austin and double teamed on The Rock,[41] forming a tag team called The Two-Man Power Trip. Triple H then defeated Chris Jericho for his third Intercontinental Championship on the April 5 edition of SmackDown!,[42] and won it for a fourth time two weeks later by defeating Jeff Hardy. Triple H then became a tag team champion for the first time at Backlash when he and Austin defeated Kane and The Undertaker in a winner-take-all tag match. As Triple H was still Intercontinental Champion, the win made him a double champion.[43]

During the May 21, 2001 episode of Raw, he suffered a legitimate and career-threatening injury.[5][44] In the night's main event, he and Austin were defending the Tag Team Championship against Chris Jericho and Chris Benoit. At one point, Jericho had Austin trapped in the Walls of Jericho. Triple H ran in to break it up, but just as he did, he suffered a tear in his left quadriceps muscle,[5][44] causing it to come completely off the bone.[11] Despite his inability to place any weight on his leg, Triple H was able to complete the match.[11] He even allowed Jericho to put him in the Walls of Jericho, a move that places considerable stress on the quadriceps. The tear required an operation, which was performed by orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews. This injury brought an abrupt end to the McMahon-Helmsley Era, as the rigorous rehabilitation process kept Triple H out of action for over eight months,[5][11] completely missing The Invasion storyline.

Return from injury and Shawn Michaels feud (2002)

Triple H after winning the Undisputed Championship at WrestleMania X8

Triple H returned to Raw as a face on January 7, 2002 at Madison Square Garden.[11] He won the Royal Rumble and received an Undisputed WWF Championship match at WrestleMania X8.[45] At WrestleMania X8, Triple H beat Chris Jericho for the Undisputed Championship.[5][45] After holding the title for a month, Helmsley dropped it to Hulk Hogan at Backlash.[45] Triple H then became exclusive to the SmackDown! roster due to the WWF Draft Lottery and continued to feud with Jericho, culminating in a Hell in a Cell match at Judgment Day. On June 6, Triple H defeated Hogan in a Number One Contenders match for the Undisputed Championship at the King of the Ring against The Undertaker but was unsuccessful at the event.

In the interim, between the Royal Rumble and WrestleMania, the McMahon-Helmsley Faction was brought to an official on-screen conclusion. By the time he returned, Triple H's on-screen marriage to Stephanie McMahon was on the rocks, so Stephanie faked a pregnancy in order to get him back on her side.[46] When he learned that it was fake, he dumped her publicly on Raw when they were supposed to renew their wedding vows.[46] Stephanie aligned with Jericho afterward,[46] but she was forced to leave after losing a Triple Threat match on Raw the night after WrestleMania when she was pinned by Triple H.[47] The divorce, and thus the storyline, was finalized at Vengeance.[48]

Meanwhile, Shawn Michaels had made his return to WWE and joined the New World Order (NWO). Michaels and Kevin Nash planned to bring Triple H over to Raw in order to put him into the group. Vince McMahon, however, disbanded the nWo following several backstage complications and brought in Eric Bischoff as the Raw brand's new general manager. One of Bischoff's first intentions was to follow up on the nWo's plan and bring Triple H over to the Raw roster. Triple H did indeed go to the Raw brand, reuniting with Shawn Michaels, but on July 22 he turned on Michaels by performing a Pedigree on him during what was supposed to be a DX reunion, turning heel once again. The following week, Triple H smashed Michaels' face into a car window to prove that Michaels was weak. These events led to the beginning of a long storyline rivalry between the former partners and an eventual "Unsanctioned Street Fight" at SummerSlam, in which Michaels came out of retirement to win. Afterwards, however, Triple H attacked him with a sledgehammer, and Michaels was carried out of the ring.[49]

Before September 2, 2002, WWE recognized only one champion for both the Raw and SmackDown! brands. After SummerSlam, champion Brock Lesnar became exclusive to SmackDown!, leaving Raw without a champion. Raw General Manager Eric Bischoff then awarded Triple H the Big Gold Belt (which had been used for the NWA World Heavyweight Championship and WCW World Heavyweight Championship) making him the first World Heavyweight Champion of the WWE brand.[50] Triple H retained his title against Rob Van Dam at Unforgiven when Ric Flair hit RVD with a sledgehammer.

In October 2002, Triple H began feuding with Kane, leading to a match at No Mercy on October 20 in which both Kane's Intercontinental Championship and Triple H's World Heavyweight Championship were at stake. In the weeks preceding the match, Triple H claimed that, several years earlier, Kane had an unrequited relationship with a woman named Katie Vick.[51] He went on to claim that, after Vick was killed in a car crash, Kane (the driver) raped her corpse.[51] Triple H later threatened to show video footage of Kane committing the act in question; however, the footage that finally aired showed Triple H (dressed as Kane) simulating necrophilia with a mannequin in a casket;[51] Kane's tag team partner The Hurricane responded the following week by showing a video of Triple H (rather, someone wearing a Triple H series of masks) getting an enema. The angle was very unpopular with fans,[52] and was de-emphasised before the title match. Triple H went on to defeat Kane at No Mercy, unifying the two titles.[53]

Triple H eventually lost the World Heavyweight Championship to Shawn Michaels in the first Elimination Chamber match, at Survivor Series.[54] He defeated RVD for the title shot at Armageddon with Michaels as special referee. He regained the title from Michaels in a Three Stages of Hell match at Armageddon.[54]

Evolution (2003–2005)

Triple H in April 2005

In January 2003, Triple H formed a stable known as Evolution with Ric Flair, Randy Orton, and Batista. Triple H and Ric Flair challenged RVD and Kane for the World Tag Team Titles, but they lost the match. The group was pushed on Raw from 2003 to 2004. The height of their dominance occurred after Armageddon when every member of Evolution left the pay-per-view holding a title.[55] Triple H held the World Heavyweight Championship for most of 2003 until Unforgiven, losing the title to Bill Goldberg. After a failed attempt to win back the title from Goldberg in a rematch at the Survivor Series, he finally regained the championship against Goldberg in a triple threat match at Armageddon which also involved Kane. At the 2004 Royal Rumble, Triple H and Shawn Michaels fought in a Last Man Standing match to a double countout, so Triple H retained the title as a result.[55] Triple H dropped the title to Chris Benoit at WrestleMania XX,[56] and he was unable to reclaim the belt from Benoit in subsequent rematches, including a rematch from WrestleMania between Triple H, Benoit, and Shawn Michaels at Backlash.[56]

He then ended his feud with Michaels, defeating him in a Hell in a Cell match at Bad Blood.[56] After another failed attempt, losing to Benoit at Vengeance, he focused on Eugene, beating him at SummerSlam.[57] Triple H then regained the title from former associate Randy Orton at Unforgiven.[58] Following a Triple Threat World Heavyweight title defense against Benoit and Edge on the November 29, 2004 episode of Raw, the World Heavyweight Championship became vacant for the first time.[59] At New Year's Revolution, Triple H won the Elimination Chamber to begin his tenth world title reign.[60] At WrestleMania 21, Triple H lost the championship to Batista,[61] and subsequently lost two rematches at Backlash and Vengeance.[62][63] After Vengeance, Triple H took hiatus from WWE due to suffering from his minor neck problems.[64]

After four month hiatus, Triple H returned to Raw on October 3, 2005 as part of WWE Homecoming. He teamed with fellow Evolution member Flair to defeat Chris Masters and Carlito. After the match, Triple H turned on Flair hitting Flair with a sledgehammer, sparking a feud between the duo.[65] Flair defeated Triple H in a Steel cage match at Taboo Tuesday for Flair's Intercontinental Championship.[66] Subsequently, Triple H defeated Flair in a non-title Last Man Standing match at Survivor Series to end their feud.[66]

D-Generation X reunion (2006–2007)

Triple H about to perform the Pedigree on John Cena.

Although Triple H failed to win the Royal Rumble match at the Royal Rumble, another championship opportunity arose for Triple H in the Road to WrestleMania Tournament. He won the tournament, granting him a match for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania 22. At WrestleMania, Triple H and John Cena fought in the main event for the title, which Triple H lost via submission.[67] Later that month at Backlash, Triple H was involved in another WWE Championship match, fighting Edge and Cena in a Triple Threat match, where he lost again. In an act of frustration, a bloodied Triple H used his sledgehammer to attack both Edge and Cena and then performed a number of DX crotch chops.[68] Triple H unsuccessfully attempted to win the WWE title from Cena on numerous occasions, blaming his shortcomings on Vince McMahon, which eventually led to a feud between the McMahons and Triple H.

DX striking their signature pose

Shawn Michaels returned on the June 12 edition of Raw and soon reunited with Triple H to reform D-Generation X, turning Triple H face once again for the first time since 2002.[6] DX defeated the Spirit Squad at Vengeance in a 5-on-2 handicap match.[69] They continued their feud with Vince McMahon, Shane McMahon and the Spirit Squad for several weeks. They then defeated the Spirit Squad again on the July 18, 2006 edition of Saturday Night's Main Event in a 5-on-2 Elimination match. They then again defeated the McMahons at SummerSlam, withstanding the attack of several handpicked WWE superstars by Vince McMahon.[68] At Unforgiven, D-Generation X overcame the odds once again, defeating The McMahons and ECW World Champion Big Show in a Hell in a Cell match. During the match, DX embarrassed Vince by shoving his face in between Big Show's buttocks, and DX won when Triple H broke a sledgehammer over the shoulders of Vince McMahon after Michaels performed Sweet Chin Music on him.[70]

At Cyber Sunday during DX's feud with Rated-RKO, special guest referee Eric Bischoff allowed the illegal use of a weapon to give Rated-RKO the win.[70] At Survivor Series, DX got their revenge when their team defeated Edge and Orton's team in an Elimination Match.[71] In January 2007, at New Year's Revolution, DX and Rated-RKO fought to a no-contest after Triple H suffered a legitimate torn right quadriceps (similar to the one he suffered in 2001 but in the other leg) fifteen minutes into the match.[72][73] Surgery was successfully performed on January 9, 2007 by Dr. James Andrews.[72]

Record breaking WWE Champion (2007–2009)

Triple H performing his signature ring entrance pose on the middle rope following his 2007 comeback.

Triple H made his return at SummerSlam, where he defeated King Booker.[74] After his return, he won the WWE Championship at No Mercy after beating the newly named Champion, Randy Orton, making Triple H an eleven-time world champion.[75] In the same event, Triple H also defeated Umaga in his first title defense after Mr. McMahon declared his already-scheduled bout with Umaga, a title match.[76] McMahon then announced, Orton would receive a title rematch in a Last Man Standing match in the final match of the event, which Orton won after an RKO onto the announcer's table, thus ending Triple H's sixth reign.[76] Triple H's title reign at No Mercy is the fifth shortest reign in WWE history, only lasting through the duration of the event.[76] After winning the Raw Elimination Chamber at No Way Out, Triple H gained a WWE Championship match, by outlasting five other men, last eliminating Jeff Hardy after a Pedigree on a steel chair.[77] However, at WrestleMania XXIV, Randy Orton retained after punting Triple H and pinning John Cena following Triple H's Pedigree on Cena.[78] A month later, at Backlash, Triple H won the title in a Fatal Four-Way Elimination match against Orton, Cena, and John "Bradshaw" Layfield, tying the record for most WWE Championship reigns with The Rock.[79] Triple H then retained the title against Orton at Judgment Day in a Steel Cage match and again at One Night Stand in a Last Man Standing match.[80][81] Orton suffered a legitimate collarbone injury during the match, thus ending the feud prematurely.[82]

On June 23, 2008 edition of Raw, Triple H was drafted to the SmackDown brand as a part of the 2008 WWE Draft, in the process making the WWE Championship exclusive to SmackDown.[83] He defended the championship over the summer and was the only champion to retain his title at Unforgiven's Championship Scramble matches. After this he defended it against Jeff Hardy, who was in the Unforgiven match.

At Survivor Series, Triple H was scheduled to defend the championship against Vladimir Kozlov and Hardy, however Hardy was kept out of the match after a scripted attack and injury. During the match, Smackdown General Manager Vickie Guerrero announced that Edge had returned and introduced him into the contest. Jeff Hardy interfered and hit Triple H with a steel chair meant for Edge, thus costing him the title and resulting in Edge winning his sixth World Title. Triple H entered seventh in the 2009 Royal Rumble, but was last eliminated by Randy Orton. In February at Elimination Chamber, Triple H won the WWE Championship in the SmackDown Chamber match, setting the record for most reigns at eight. That record stood until 2011 when John Cena won his ninth WWE Championship.

The Legacy feud and DX farewell (2009–2011)

Triple H after retaining the WWE Championship against Randy Orton at WrestleMania XXV.

On the February 16, 2009 episode of Raw, Triple H made an appearance aiding Stephanie and Shane McMahon, after they were attacked by Randy Orton.[84] On the February 20 episode of SmackDown, Triple H was interviewed by Jim Ross, in the interview, footage was shown highlighting the events that occurred on the February 16 episode of Raw. Ross asked Triple H how he felt seeing that footage, in response, he broke character (after 5 years of marriage) by admitting that Vince McMahon is his father-in-law, that Shane is his brother-in-law, and that Stephanie is his wife, thus creating a rivalry between Triple H and Orton. On the February 23 episode of Raw, Triple H confronted Orton, before attacking him, Ted DiBiase, and Cody Rhodes (a group known as The Legacy) with a sledgehammer and chasing them from the arena.[85] Weeks later, it was announced that Triple H would defend the WWE championship against Orton at WrestleMania XXV.[86] At the event, Triple H defeated Orton to retain the title.Triple H would later face Orton and Legacy in a six man tag team match with Shane McMahon and Batista for the WWE championship at Backlash (2009). Triple H lost the title after trying to stop Batista from hitting Cody Rhodes with a chair then being hit with a RKO by Orton followed by the running punt to the head, allowing Orton to win the WWE championship and putting Hunter out of action for six weeks. At The Bash, Triple H would lose to Orton in a Three Stages of Hell match for the WWE Title. At Night of Champions, Triple H would again lose to Orton in a match for the WWE Championship, this time in a Triple Threat match, also involving John Cena.

Triple H in Tribute to the Troops in December 2010.

On the August 10, 2009 episode of Raw, video segments aired in which Triple H met with Michaels at an office cafeteria in Texas where he was working as a chef; throughout the segments, Triple H would try to convince Michaels return to WWE from hiatus. After several incidents during the segments (including a grease grill burgers on fire and Shawn shouting at a little girl), Michaels agreed to team with Triple H to face The Legacy at SummerSlam, superkicking the girl, and quitting from his chef job in the process.[87] On the August 17 episode of Raw, in St. Louis, MO, Michaels and Triple H officially reunited as DX, but as they were in the process of their in-ring promo, Legacy attacked them both.[88] Their first match after reuniting was against Legacy at SummerSlam, which they won.[89] At Breaking Point, however, they lost to Legacy in the first ever Submissions Count Anywhere match in WWE history.[90]

At the October pay-per-view Hell in a Cell, DX defeated Legacy in a Hell in a Cell match.[91] DX would challenge John Cena for the WWE Championship in a triple threat match at Survivor Series with both men failing to win the title,[92] although they were able to retain their friendship and tag team partnership. On December 13 at TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs, DX defeated Chris Jericho and The Big Show to win the Unified WWE Tag Team Championship in a Tables, Ladders, and Chairs match;[93] the first tag team championship reign for Michaels and Triple H as a tag team.

On December 21, Triple H announced that Hornswoggle was the new DX mascot.[94] This came about after Hornswoggle sued DX for emotional and physical distress due to them not allowing him to join DX.[94] After being taken to court where they were ruled guilty by a jury and judge consisting of dwarves, Michaels told Triple H that Hornswoggle could be the mascot. Triple H agreed to it only if the charges were dropped, which Hornswoggle agreed to.[94] On January 11 Mike Tyson, who was the Raw guest host for the night, teamed with Jericho to face DX; however, at the end of the bout, Tyson turned on Jericho and aligned himself with Michaels and Triple H.[95] On the February 8, 2010 episode of Raw, DX lost their Unified Tag Team Titles to ShoMiz (The Miz and The Big Show) in a Triple Threat Elimination Tag Team match also featuring The Straight Edge Society (CM Punk and Luke Gallows.) On the March 1 episode of Raw they lost their rematch for the titles which would be their last televised match before Michaels retired.[96] Michaels and Triple H had a non-wrestling reunion at the 2010 Tribute to the Troops.

Triple H performing his entrance at WrestleMania XXVII, walking between shields.

On February 21, Triple H eliminated WWE Champion Sheamus in an Elimination Chamber match, though he would not win the title himself. Sheamus attacked him weeks later, setting up a match between the two at WrestleMania XXVI, where Triple H was victorious.[97][98] Also at WrestleMania, Shawn Michaels lost to The Undertaker and was forced to retire, but while giving a farewell speech the next night, Sheamus attacked him. This would set up a rematch at Extreme Rules where Sheamus attacked Triple H at the start of the show ahead of a win in their scheduled contest to allow Triple H time off to recover from injuries.[99] Triple H made an untelevised appearance on October 30 at the WWE Fan Appreciation Event and also at the 2010 Tribute to the Troops.[100]

On the February 21, 2011 episode of Raw, Triple H made his return to the WWE by interrupting the return of The Undertaker. He challenged him to a match at WrestleMania XXVII, which later became a No Holds Barred match. A week later he put Sheamus through the announce table with a Pedigree, in retaliation for Sheamus giving him a 10 month injury. At WrestleMania XXVII, Triple H lost to Taker, extending Taker's WrestleMania winning streak to 19–0.

Chief Operating Officer (2011)

At the end of the July 18, 2011 episode of Raw, Triple H returned on behalf of WWE's board of directors to relieve his father-in-law Vince McMahon of his duties. This was followed by the announcement that he had been assigned to take over as Chief Operating Officer (COO) of the WWE. This was during a storyline where CM Punk had won the WWE Championship and left the company. Though a new champion was crowned, Triple H helped resign CM Punk and upheld both championship reigns. He announced he would referee a match to unify both WWE Championships at SummerSlam. Although he counted a pinfall for CM Punk to win, John Cena's leg was on the ropes which would break the pin.[101] Regardless, Triple H's longtime friend Kevin Nash attacked Punk immediately after the match to allow Alberto Del Rio to become champion. Though Nash and Punk demanded a match against each other, Triple H fired Nash for insubordination and booked himself in a "No Disqualification" match at Night Of Champions with his position of COO on the line. He won the match despite interference from John Laurinaitis, Nash, The Miz and R-Truth. After repeated attacks from these wrestlers in various matches, the majority of WWE's on-screen staff gave Triple H a vote of no confidence. Mr. McMahon returned to relieve him of his duties on Raw though he remained COO. He was replaced by Laurinaitis on Raw, who booked him in a tag team match against Miz and R-Truth at Vengeance. During the match, Nash once again attacked him and did so the following night, hospitalizing him. WWE later announced that Triple H sustained a fractured vertebrae which would remove him from television for at least one month.

Backstage roles

In 2010, Levesque's role as an Executive Senior Advisor was officially formalized as he was given an office at WWE headquarters in Stamford, Connecticut.[102] Levesque was named Executive Vice President, Talent in 2011. In this role he oversees the talent relations and talent development departments, training of performers and management of worldwide recruitment. In addition to his talent duties, Levesque has worked as a director and producer of the creative direction and storylines of WWE’s programming.[103]

Personal life

In 2000, Levesque began dating Stephanie McMahon and they married on October 25, 2003.[104] He had previously been in a long-term relationship with former WWE wrestler Chyna.[105] He and McMahon have three daughters.[106] On January 8, 2006, WWE announced that McMahon and Levesque were expecting their first child, due on July 27, 2006.[107] Stephanie McMahon continued to work and travel with WWE throughout her pregnancy, giving birth to an 8 lb, 7 oz (3.8 kg) baby girl, Aurora Rose Levesque, on July 24, 2006.[108] The couple had their second daughter, Murphy Claire Levesque, on July 28, 2008.[109] The couple welcomed their third daughter, Vaughn Evelyn Levesque, on August 24, 2010.[110]

He has a sister named Lynn.[11]

In late 2004, Levesque released a book titled Making the Game: Triple H's Approach to a Better Body.[111] Mostly devoted to bodybuilding advice, the book also includes some autobiographical information, memoirs, and opinions.


Year Film/TV series Role Notes
1998 Pacific Blue Triple H
1998 The Drew Carey Show The Disciplinarian
2001 MADtv Himself
2004 Blade: Trinity Jarko Grimwood
2005 The Bernie Mac Show Triple H[112]
2006 Relative Strangers[113] Wrestler Uncredited
2011 The Chaperone Raymond "Ray Ray" Bradstone
Inside Out Arlo "A.J." Jayne

In wrestling

Triple H prepares to execute the Pedigree on Chris Benoit
Triple H performing his signature ring entrance pose on the middle rope
  • Nicknames
    • The Connecticut Blueblood[117]
    • 'The Cerebral Assassin'[64]
    • The Game[5]
    • The King of Kings[64]

Championships and accomplishments

WrestleMania record

WrestleMania Year Wrestler Notes
XII 1996 The Ultimate Warrior
13 1997 Goldust
XIV 1998 Owen Hart
XV 1999 Kane
2000 2000 The Rock, The Big Show, Mick Foley For WWE Championship
X-Seven 2001 The Undertaker
X8 2002 Chris Jericho For WWE Championship
XIX 2003 Booker T For World Heavyweight Championship
XX 2004 Shawn Michaels, Chris Benoit For World Heavyweight Championship
21 2005 Batista For World Heavyweight Championship
22 2006 John Cena For WWE Championship
XXIV 2008 Randy Orton, John Cena For WWE Championship
XXV 2009 Randy Orton, For WWE Championship
XXVI 2010 Sheamus
XXVII 2011 The Undertaker


Triple H as the World Heavyweight Champion.
Triple H as the WWE Champion at No Mercy in 2007.
  • Independent Wrestling Federation
    • IWF Heavyweight Championship (1 time)[4]

1 ^ Triple H's fifth reign was as Undisputed WWF Champion.


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  • Mick Foley (2000). Have a Nice Day: A Tale of Blood and Sweatsocks. HarperCollins. ISBN 0061031011. 
  • PWI Staff (2007). "Pro Wrestling Illustrated presents: 2007 Wrestling almanac & book of facts". "Wrestling’s historical cards" (Kappa Publishing). 
  • Baer, Randy and R. D. Reynolds (2003). Wrestlecrap: The Very Worst of Pro Wrestling. ECW Press. ISBN 1550225847. 
  • Laurer, Joanie (2001). If They Only Knew. ReaganBooks. ISBN 0061098957. 

External links

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