Before being called up to the main roster, WWE decided to give WALTER a new name, GUNTHER, shortly after he made the full-time move to NXT.
This was despite him going by the name for years on the independents and having a dominant run in WWE NXT UK. He spoke about the name change while appearing on Cheap Heat podcast.
“Well, the thing is like, would I prefer to keep WALTER? Yeah, of course, I’m gonna prefer that. But on the other hand, if you look at a wrestler’s career, a name change is nothing uncommon. That happens. So I was realistic about it.
“And for me, at the end, it was also clear, it’s my real name, and the WWE has obviously interest in whoever they put on the television to put their original stamp on it if that makes sense. So I expected it. Obviously, Gunther is — at the end of the day, if Gunther would be my real name and they would have changed it to WALTER, the reaction would have been exactly the same.
“WALTER is just another older German name. So I think it was more a case of being used to a certain name. And now there’s a new name, but I think, yeah, just as I expected, nobody cares anymore about that. Nobody’s worried about a new name anymore.”
transcription via WrestleZone
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