We’ve been big fans of the big Austrian known as Gunther since he was WALTER. It’s been great to see Gunther receive one of the best pushes in recent memory on SmackDown, especially after he had to navigate a somewhat rocky start to his main roster WWE career.
The latest phase of Der Ring General’s rise has been his ongoing stint as Intercontinental champion. Since winning the belt last year, Triple H has elevated both Gunther and the title with his reign. Dethroning Imperium’s leader will be a big feather in the cap of whoever eventually manages that feat, and the universe of fans who’ll be anxious to see who Gunther chops next will be as large as it’s ever been.
Topics for another day, however. Right now, we need to acknowledge the latest milestone of Gunther’s reign. Yesterday (Feb. 9), WWE shared that by hitting 245+ days with the strap, Gunther’s now passed Shinsuke Nakamura (201), Randy Orton (209), Cody Rhodes (233) & Shelton Benjamin (244).
“This century” sounds bad ass — and it is more than half of the WWE Intercontinental title’s history. But the 20+ years it existed in the 20th century gave us five longer reigns than Gunther’s: The Rock (264), Mr. Perfect (280), Greg Valentine (285), Randy Savage (414), and The Honky Tonk Man (454).
Will our guy pass any, or all, of those? We’ll start to find out after his next challenger is determined on SmackDown tonight. No matter when it ends though, this reign’s played a big part in establishing Gunther as one of WWE’s top guys — hopefully for a long time to come.