Walter Hahn is a 36-year-old professional wrestler from Austria. Hahn is currently signed with the WWE and performs on RAW under the ring name, Gunther. He is also the leader of the stable, Imperium. Gunther is the WWE Intercontinental Champion in his first reign.
Walter’s Early Wrestling Career
Walter made his wrestling debut for Westside Xtreme Wrestling on May 4, 2007, in a match involving Atsushi Aoki, Adam Polak, and Tengkwa on the pre-show at the 16 Carat Gold Tournament. On October 2, 2010, he defeated Zack Sabre Jr. to win the wXw Unified World Wrestling Championship in Germany. He lost the title on January 15, 2011, to Daisuke Sekimoto. Walter regained the title on May 2, 2011, during a Big Japan Pro Wrestling card in Tokyo, Japan. Walter retained the title for 383 days, before losing it to El Generico (Sami Zayn) on May 19, 2012.
On March 3, 2013, Walter and Robert Dreissker defeated RockSkillet (Jay Skillet and Jonathan Gresham) to win the wXw World Tag Team Championship at day three of 16 Carat Gold. They lost the titles to Hot and Spicy in Germany. He then partnered with Zack Sabre Jr. to win the vacant wXw World Tag Team Championship on October 4, 2015 in the finals of the 2015 World Tag Team Tournament.
Walter and Sabre lost the titles at the wXw Fifteenth Anniversary Show on December 12, 2015, losing to Cerebrus. Two years later, Walter and Ringkampf stablemate Timothy Thatcher defeated Massive Product to win the wXw World Tag Team Championship in the finals of the 2017 wXw World Tag Team League on October 8, 2017. Walter and Thatcher lost the wXw Tag Titles to Da Mack and John Klinger on March 11, 2018.
Walter also wrestled for Progress Wrestling and made his debut as Big Daddy Walter at the 2015 Super Strong Style 16 Tournament at the Electric Ballroom in London. While wrestling for Progress Wrestling, he won the Progress Atlas Championship three times and the Progress Unified World Championship once. He also wrestled for Pro Wrestling Guerrilla and Defiant Wrestling.
Walter’s WWE Debut & UK Championship
On January 12, 2019, Walter made his WWE debut at NXT UK TakeOver: Blackpool, by confronting WWE United Kingdom Champion Pete Dunne after Dunne’s successful title defense. He made his in-ring debut on the February 2, 2019, NXT UK episode where he defeated Jack Starz in under four minutes.
At NXT TakeOver: New York, he defeated Pete Dunne to win the United Kingdom Championship. He successfully defended the title against Dunne in a rematch on May 22, 2019. Around this time, he also reunited with Ringkampf under the new name Imperium.
He retained his title against Travis Banks in a match on June 26 and then at NXT UK TakeOver: Cardiff, he successfully defended his title against Tyler Bate. At NXT UK TakeOver: Blackpool II, Walter also defended his title against Joe Coffey.
Walter Moves to NXT & Becomes Gunther
Gunther Moves to WWE’s Main Roster
Gunther made his SmackDown debut and successfully defeated Joe Alonzo on April 8 2022. On June 10’s episode of Friday Night SmackDown, Gunther defeated Ricochet to win the WWE Intercontinental Championship. Gunther successfully defended the title against Ricochet in a rematch and Shinsuke Nakamura. Prior to Gunther’s title defense at Clash at the Castle on September 3rd, Ludwig Kaiser announced the reformation of Imperium by reintroducing Fabian Aichner, now known as Giovanni Vinci. Gunther then defeated Sheamus to retain the title in a critically acclaimed match, with many deeming it the best match of the event. Gunther then beat Sheamus in a rematch on the October 7th episode of SmackDown.
On the November 4th episode of SmackDown, Gunther successfully defended the Intercontinental Championship against Rey Mysterio in the show’s main event. Gunther followed this up with another successful title defense against Ricochet on the December 16th episode of SmackDown. On the January 13th 2023 episode of SmackDown, Gunther successfully defended the title against Braun Strowman.
Gunther Sets Royal Rumble Record
At the Royal Rumble on January 28th 2023, Gunther was the first entrant and the last person eliminated from the match. He was eliminated by the match’s winner Cody Rhodes, who entered as the thirtieth and final participant. His 71 minute and 25 second performance was the longest in the history of the event, excluding Daniel Bryan’s 76-minute stint in the 50-man Greatest Royal Rumble.
On February 9th, Gunther reached 245 days as Intercontinental champion, surpassing Shelton Benjamin’s reign of 244 days. He is now the longest-reigning Intercontinental Champion in the 21st century. On March 18th, Gunther successfully defended the title against Madcap Moss and subsequently reached 281 days as Intercontinental Champion, surpassing WWE Hall of Famer Greg Valentine’s reign of 280 days, giving him the longest reign as Intercontinental Champion in 34 years.
On Night 2 of WrestleMania 39 on April 2nd, Gunther retained the title against Sheamus and Drew McIntyre in a critically acclaimed triple threat match. Gunther and his Imperium teammates Kaiser and Vinci were drafted to RAW in the 2023 WWE Draft. Gunther successfully defended the Intercontinental Championship against Mustafa Ali in May at Night of Champions, Matt Riddle in July at Money In The Bank, and Drew McIntyre at SummerSlam in AugustSHOW LESS
Career Championships and Accomplishments
- Defiant Wrestling
- Defiant Internet Championship (1 time)
- European Wrestling Promotion
- EWP Tag Team Championship (1 time)
- Fight Club: PRO
- Infinity Trophy (2018)
- German Stampede Wrestling
- GSW Tag Team Championship (1 time)
- Over The Top Wrestling
- OTT Championship (1 time)
- Progress Wrestling
- Progress Atlas Championship (3 times)
- Unified World Championship (1 time)
- Pro Wrestling Fighters
- PWF North-European Championship (1 time)
- Pro Wrestling Guerrilla
- PWG World Championship (1 time)
- Rings of Europe
- 20 man Halloween Rumble (2006)
- RoE King of Europe #1 Contenders Championship Tournament (2007)
- Westside Xtreme Wrestling
- wXw Unified World Wrestling Championship (3 times)
- World Tag Team Championship (4 times)
- wXw 16 Carat Gold Tournament (2010)
- wXw World Tag Team Tournament (2015)
- World Tag Team League (2017)
- Ambition 11 Tournament (2019)
- World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE)
- NXT United Kingdom Championship (1 time)
- WWE Intercontinental Championship (1 time, current)