Contralona got the chance, the big opportunity to chat a few minutes with one of the most impressive WWE Superstars of the modern era, the Intercontinental Champion, "The Ring General" GUNTHER. On this exclusive interview the Austrian Superstar talked about his legacy, his last WrestleMania match, when he faced Drew McIntyre and Sheamus, his future goals, including next SummerSlam and finally he got a few words for all the fans in Puerto Rico, where he can't wait to perform. Here is the full interview with the Intercontinental Champion, GUNTHER:
Contralona: How does he feel carrying the Intercontinental Championship legacy?
GUNTHER: "It is very important obviously. I take great pride in doing it. It might be to the title legacy but also building my own legacy. It's been a big responsibility so far but also a great experience, I am really enjoying it and I put all my effort into that, all the energy that I have. So far, like I said It's been a great ride, let's see how far we can go with it".
C: What message does he want to send as IC Champion?
G: "I don't specific as the Intercontinental Champion, just in general, I want to be they guy that raises the bar of how serious our sports gets taken to a highest possible level and I think that with Intercontinental Championship I will be able to raise the bar again, as it was down for a while, but I've always done that with title runs outside WWE or even in NXT UK. I care about this sport a lot, I think I care about it more than most of the colleagues out there and that's what I want to deliver in the ring. I would say that I am almost a very selfless guy because all my energy goes into keeping the standards of this sports up and everybody benefits from them".
C: On the impact of his match at WrestleMania 39 with Sheamus and Drew McIntyre
G: "It was very well received. I think in general a good heavyweight fight with guys of certain heights and weight when that gets mixed with a lot of agility and a lot of physicality and high heights in the match... I think that's one of the most exciting scenarios you can have for any match at any sports. Obviously, I benefited at the end when Drew and Sheamus got really stuck in the personal issue that they have, which I didn't mind; I think it exposed them a little bit but my mind was focus on the gold as it was supposed to be. I was able to take the win and in general, WrestleMania for myself was a big happening in my career and definitely wasn't the last one I've ever competed in so... I am already focus on what's next for me, more or less, when it comes to that almost those big milestones in my career, also at the Royal Rumble... I'm focused on doing the best I can on that day and when it's done my focused is already on the next challenge so I think once my career is over I can look back on all those things and re-enjoy them, if that make sense, but right now I am more in the tunnel, don't look back, not left, not right... I'm focused in one direction and that is where my efforts goes to".
C: Does Drew McIntyre deserve an opportunity for the Intercontinental Championship?
G: "I guess the direction we are heading in is quite obvious. On Raw there's a face to face announced so we'll see what happens there and how we go one from there. Does Drew deserves a shot? Yes, I think so because his track record of his career is very impressive, I have to say that, he was the top guy of the company, he beat Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania, but is a sad detail that it happens in front of nobody because of COVID and I think Drew is re-chasing that moment a little bit that he feels like he missed out back then and I guess he wants to achieve that on my expense, that my guess where his motivation comes from in this moment. Also, the fact that I raised the level of the Intercontinental Championship to a degree where somebody like Drew McIntyre says: 'Ok, that's something for me to go after, that's worth my energy, that's worth my attention'.
"As a wrestler I think he deserves it, as a person I don't think he is focused on the important things, for me it feels more like his mission is more emotion driven and out of personal feelings that things that happened in his career should have been on different ways, if that makes any sense"
C: What did he learn in WWE that did not learn before in his career?
G: "That's a good question because at the end I think it's nothing major, nothing that I've figure out that I say: 'Ok, now everything is different', a lot of small things. I think the most important thing is to keep your confidence in your own skills, in your own beliefs, non matter the environment you are in. I think is a lot easier in the Indies to do that because there's less pressure; it's a little bit harder in NXT because it's a big environment already, there's more opinions, people working there more experienced and then the biggest stage the main roster is even more. We have so many guys doing that job behind the scenes for many many years and you hear a lot of opinions, experiences, advices and staff like that and I love to listen to all that but at the end of the day the trick is what to take out of that and make it useful for you and identify what is nuts even though it's correct for life but maybe is not useful for you. At the end of the day it comes down to having the confidence to focus in and keep doing what you can do best, if that makes sense. I think that was the biggest learning experience because when the environment grows, obviously the pressure grows, the room for error gets way smaller so that's the tricky part of it".
C: Who is the next European wrestler that deserves the gold?
G: "Besides from me!? At the moment I think the European continent has done it fresher when it come to producing really good wrestlers. Right now obviously 'Kaiser' is doing pretty well in the last months, I really think he found the way to stand out even, I would say, without getting the big big chances so really go out there and got a lot of time and show what he can do. He is capable of a lot and a very charismatic guy, even with the limited amount of time that he has he found the way to stand out and I think he would really deserve a chance to get more time and more matches".
C: A few words for the fans in Puerto Rico
G: "I got to say I missed out the last WWE event in Puerto Rico, Backlash, because I love tradition and I love history and I think Puerto Rico has a huge history when it comes to our sport so I would love to go there and comete there, but I am confident that WWE will return there in some point and I am hoping go there".