From the late 90s throughout the 2000s, Triple H was among the biggest names in the industry. In the past few years, he has remained just as big and influential due to his new role in management. Triple H has been groomed to take over the WWE after Vince McMahon, which explains his heavy involvement in the current product, especially NXT and 205 Live.
As an active wrestler, Triple H was always seen as a polarizing figure who had plenty of friends backstage, but he certainly made enemies along the way - some of whom refuse to work with the WWE due to their strained relationship with him. Today, Triple H has shied away from controversy for the most part, which is only natural given his current role. And since he is highly involved with WWE talents away from the ring, Triple H has developed several friendships over the years.
We already know about his best friends such as Shawn Michaels, Kevin Nash and Scott Hall - but some fans are unaware that he has many close associates on the current roster. But not everyone is quite as fond of him as he isn't exactly on the best of terms with many names who are currently employed by the company. Fans may be familiar with his beefs against the likes of Scott Steiner, CM Punk and Ken Shamrock - but how many fans are aware that Triple H isn't the friendliest with some of today's Superstars? Here are 10 wrestlers who are close with Triple H and 10 who keep their distance:
20 Close: Sami Zayn
Since arriving into the WWE, Triple H has been among Sami Zayn's biggest supporters behind the scenes, beginning in the later's journey in NXT. He has always had the highest praise for Zayn as far as his in-ring work, but also his character away from the ring. When Zayn was seemingly lost on the shuffle on the roster, it was reported that Triple H stepped in to see the direction in which his character would be taking, believing that he hadn't been properly used by the creative team. With Triple H's influence, Zayn could be in for a major push in the near future.
19 Keeps Their Distance: Jinder Mahal
Triple H may not have anything against Jinder Mahal per se, he just doesn't happen to view him in the same light as Vince McMahon once did. While the former always saw him as a mid-carder at best, McMahon believed that Mahal could become a top heel in the company - leading to his run as the WWE Champion on SmackDown Live. If it were up to Triple H, Mahal wouldn't have gotten the opportunity to move up the card since he prefers a number of Superstars on the current roster - many of whom he also gets along with in real life.
18 Close: Shinsuke Nakamura
The acquisition of Shinsuke Nakamura was a valuable one for the WWE that may not have taken place if it weren't for Triple H's involvement. Having been familiar with Nakamura's career and all-around talent, Triple H was keen on bringing him over to the company. In interviews, The Game has always spoken greatly about Nakamura as a performer, claiming that he is one of the most unique talents that he had ever seen. Coming from one of the most experienced figures in the industry, that speaks volumes about how highly Nakamura is viewed by Triple H inside the squared circle.
17 Keeps Their Distance: Samoa Joe
Triple H and Samoa Joe enjoy a professional relationship behind the scenes, but they aren't quite as friendly with each other as The Game happens to be with many Superstars. Being responsible for recruiting plenty of talents around the world, Joe was among the names that Triple H wanted to bring over to the WWE. Although he had reservations about whether he would make it in the company, going as far as to tell Joe that he may never make it out of NXT, Joe has proven all doubters wrong with his impressive run with the company thus far.
16 Close: Randy Orton
Randy Orton and Triple H have been friends for 15 years now when the latter recruited him to join as the fourth member of Evolution. Triple H saw plenty of potential in Orton from the jump, and was open to working with him despite the controversy surrounding a young Orton. Since then, they have worked numerous programs with each other and have become good friends away from the ring. Early on, Triple H served as a mentor for Randy Orton on Raw, showing him the ropes of the industry to help him develop into the star that he is today.
15 Keeps Their Distance: The Miz
It's always been a mystery as to why The Miz fell quickly down the card following his reign as the WWE Champion. There have been rumors that Triple H wasn't exactly a big fan of his during the reign, and that led to de-push in the following months. Another report claimed that Triple H had been furious at The Miz for botching a move on Monday Night Raw back in 2014, and didn't exactly let him off easily. While they may not have a personal or professional beef, The Miz and Triple H aren't exactly on the best of terms either.
14 Close: Charlotte Flair
Being the daughter of Ric Flair, it would have been safe to assume that Charlotte was close with Triple H as her dad happens to be one his best friends. And while that likely played a factor, Charlotte went on to gain Triple H's respect as a performer and person later on. She has had one of the most impressive runs in recent years, and there is no doubt that being friends with Triple H has helped her case. They have done multiple public appearances together at WWE events, and Triple H is always full of praise for Charlotte in every interview.
13 Keeps Their Distance: Alicia Fox
Due to his current role, Triple H happens to be close friends with many of the newer Superstars, especially those who come through NXT. But he doesn't hold the same relationship with veterans who have been with the WWE prior to Triple H's move into management, and Alicia Fox happens to be one of them. During WrestleMania week of last year, Fox had a run-in with Ronda Rousey's husband, which led to immense heat with a number of WWE officials including Triple H. Given his friendship with Rousey, as well as Fox's antics, it is no surprise that Triple H had a problem with the way she behaved.
12 Close: Cesaro
While Vince McMahon is known for not being Cesaro's biggest fan, the same cannot be said about Triple H who has been very fond of him. During several interviews, he has always listed Cesaro as one of the most talented Superstars in the WWE, as well as among his favorites to watch in the ring. That's not to mention that Triple H wanted him apart of a faction that was nearly created years ago, which goes to show how highly he thinks of him. If Triple H had been running the show, then it is likely that Cesaro would have received a singles push by now.
11 Keeps Their Distance: Dolph Ziggler
Coming up into the WWE, Dolph Ziggler managed to impress plenty of officials as well as fans through his rise in the company. But one name who wasn't nearly as impressed was Triple H, who accused Ziggler of copying Shawn Michaels in various regards. In fact, there were reports that the two had backstage tension at some point, but that seems to have faded away as time went by. And while they keep distance from each other these days, they are still able to work on a professional level when they need to despite having had conflicts in the past.
10 Close: Bayley
As a member of NXT, Bayley was among the most popular stars on the roster and was expected to have a great future on the main roster. But her transition wasn't quite as a impressive following the first year with the WWE, and many believe that it is due to disagreement between Triple H and Vince McMahon regarding Bayley's status. She has always maintained that Triple H is one of her mentors, as well as the person she approaches whenever she needs something. Given his involvement with Bayley's career early on, it is no wonder that the two grew closer to each other.
9 Keeps Their Distance: Lana
If Triple H had been running the WWE, then Lana may not have been a member of the roster today. That is simply based on the fact that she had multiple beefs in the past, and accumulated plenty of backstage heat along the way. Considering her limitations inside the ring, Triple H may not have wanted to keep her around. But Vince McMahon has been high on Lana since her arrival into the WWE, which is why she has retained a consistent role since then. When it comes to Triple H, she keeps her distance from him for the most part.
8 Close: Seth Rollins
Seth Rollins is among Triple H's favorite Superstars in the WWE today, which is why The Game chose to be involved in him in a storyline; resulting in a WrestleMania match. Not only did he serve as his mentor on screen, but Triple H also played the role behind the scenes - assisting Rollins in becoming the Superstar that he is today. Rollins has credited Triple H for helping him throughout his WWE career, and given how close they are, it is very likely that The Game has played an influential role in making him one of the company's top stars today.
7 Keeps Their Distance: Brock Lesnar
Brock Lesnar has never been one to make many connections in the wrestling industry as he has very few friends. And while he did debut at a time when Triple H was among the top names on the card, that didn't lead to a friendship between the two. In fact, Triple H was hesitant to work with Lesnar early on, and rejected an opportunity to do so on two occasions. Considering Lesnar's personality, it's not surprising that he never got along well with Triple H beyond their professional relationship, especially since the latter didn't exactly give him a warm welcome into the WWE.
6 Close: Kevin Owens
It's safe to say that Kevin Owens left his mark on his NXT despite being a member of the brand for less than a year. At the time, he was working plenty with Triple H who was running the show, and later on helped Owens through his move to the main roster. The two Superstars have become friends behind the scenes with mutual respect towards each other, as evident by their comments to the media. Owens was very complimentary of Triple H's involvement in his career from NXT to Raw, while the latter constantly refers to him as one of the WWE's best Superstars.
5 Keeps Their Distance: Zack Ryder
Fans have always been curious as to why the WWE failed to bank on Zack Ryder's popularity in 2011. There had been rumors of Ryder having backstage heat with Triple H, which was recently confirmed by Bryan Shepard on a podcast. He stated that Triple H didn't think that Ryder had the look of a star, nor would he be taken seriously as a tough competitor. Needless to say, Ryder's career never got back on track as he lost all momentum shortly afterwards. If it's true that Triple H was the reason behind Ryder's fall, then we wouldn't blame the latter for keeping distance from The Game.
4 Close: The Undertaker
Triple H and The Undertaker's friendship goes back to the mid 90s, but the bond became stronger over the years. As two of the greatest Superstars in WWE history who competed around the same period, they were always involved in each other's careers in one way or another. In the past decade, they only grew closer as friends since they worked a lengthy program for WrestleMania. There is mutual respect between the two stars inside and outside of the ring, which also led to their most recent bout at WWE's Super Show-Down in Australia, and then the tag team match at Crown Jewel.
3 Keeps Their Distance: Baron Corbin
By now, it is fairly obvious who is a favorite of Vince McMahon and which Superstars are on better terms with Triple H. Baron Corbin falls under the former as McMahon has been high on him for a few years now, an opinion that wasn't shared by Triple H. But of course that didn't stop the WWE from handing Corbin a number of opportunities to succeed - whether on Raw or SmackDown - and the outcome has been questionable to say the least. There is no known beef between the two, but Corbin and Triple H appear to keep distance from each other.
2 Close: Finn Balor
When it comes to backstage favorites, Finn Balor would be at the top of Triple H's list. He was one of the names whom he recruited to the company, and later on assisted on daily basis as they transitioned to the WWE style. Triple H regards Balor as one of the best Superstars in the WWE, and didn't hold back from the creative team when they misbooked his return a few years ago. Following Triple H's recent surgery, Balor shared a photo on Twitter of the two stars side by side with a caption that says "Like father, like son. Get well soon!"
1 Keeps Their Distance: Shane McMahon
There has been supposed rift between Triple H and Shane McMahon, stemming from who would take over the WWE after Vince McMahon. Once it became clear that Triple H and Stephanie McMahon were likely to get the nod, Shane decided to leave the WWE in 2009 to embark on his own venture. He had a fallout with Triple H as they didn't always get along, but of course that didn't stop Shane from returning to the WWE a few years later. Today, they seem to be on better terms although they remain distant from each other for the most part.