After watching Day 2 of WrestleMania 39 play out almost exactly like he planned – one would assume Shane McMahon tearing his quad wasn’t on the card – Paul “Triple H” Levesque took to the podium at SoFi Stadium in order to discuss how each match shook out and give props to his WWE Superstars, who did the dirty work to ensure that 80,000 fans, plus millions more at home, went home happy. Working through the card match by match, Levesque had some particular praise for his reigning Intercontinental Champion Gunther, who hits so hard, it makes Trips happy to be retired.
“Gunther, Drew, Sheamus? I don’t even know where to get started on that,” Levesque said. “This was the kind of match up, when I watch it, I go, ‘wow, this is why I retired.’ I’ve been in there with Gunther, I’ve been in there with Drew, you know, those guys hit hard. Gunther’s at a different level of hitting hard, and, you know, when you talk about another event like tonight of making stars and star-making performances, all three of them walked out bigger stars. But Gunther put himself on a different level tonight, different playing field, and that’s impressive. The sky is the limit for him. I can’t say enough good stuff about him. He’s a throwback when it comes to storytelling in that ring, and, you know, every single thing he does means something, and I don’t see that a lot, so I can’t say enough good stuff about him.”
You have to give it to Levesque; booking Gunther as he did, to win a Triple Threat match over Sheamus and McIntyre without any interference from Imperium, was bold. “The Ring General” looked like an absolute star, overcame an incredible amount of damage, a proved that he can chop down even the biggest, beefiest trees in WWE’s forest. With a full year as the Intercontinental Champion very much in play, as Gunther is just two days shy of a 300-day reign, it will be interesting to see what The Fed has in store for the leader of Imperium. Then again, if you listen to him, WrestleMania 39 was just another day at the office.
WWE Chief Content Officer @TripleH has all the praise in the world for Intercontinental Champion @Gunther_AUT.#WrestleMania pic.twitter.com/ecDjXCaTnN
— WWE (@WWE) April 3, 2023
Gunther accomplished his goal at WrestleMania 39.
Discussing his WrestleMania 39 backstage with Cathy Kelley, Gunther was asked about how he felt about securing the hardest-hitting victory of the weekend. Did “The Ring General” take particular pride in his efforts, or was it just business as usual for the Austrian star?
“First of all, I delivered what I promised,” Gunther said. “I said I would go into WrestleMania, fulfill my duty to protect and defend this great prize. And how does it feel, you ask me? It feels like waking up every other morning, because, once again, I’m aware that there’s nobody out there on my level. Show me the man who is able to beat me, good luck with that.”
Good stuff, right? Gunther no sold his win just like he no sold chops from Sheamus and McIntyre despite surely being in a ton of pain, but wait, there’s more, discussing his match further with Ryan Satin of Out of Character for a special post-WrestleMania 5-minute mini edition of his show, “The Ring General” was asked if he had anyone in mind for his next challenger and let it be known that, whoever steps up, is surely going to be taken down.
“That we shall see,” Gunther said via Fightful. “(WrestleMania) was my focus, let’s see what happens on SmackDown. I guess I’ll see who is next in line. I’m fairly confident. I’m not sure if the man who is going to be able to beat me if he’s arrived here already. Everybody go out and find him.”
“Not too worried about that,” Gunther said. “My mission was to go in there and represent our sport, Imperium, and this title in the best way possible. I achieved that today. I’m satisfied with it.”
With dozens of hungry WWE superstars calling SmackDown home, it’s safe to say someone will step up to challenge Gunther for his Intercontinental Championship, be that Karrion Kross, Rey Mysterio, or a new Superstar like “Switchblade” Jay White. If they can defeat the current IC Champion, however, remains to be seen, as at this rate, Gunther may never lose again.
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