Posts Tagged ‘Jinder Mahal’

Jinder Mahal’s reign as WWE Champion ended on November 7th, 2017 in Manchester, England during an episode of SmackDown Live, but the former 3MB member is confident he will return to his former glory after AJ Styles took his title. Mahal recently spoke to Gorilla Position where he revealed his plan to get back on top and how positive he was that he would be able to achieve that goal.

Mahal walked into 2017’s SummerSlam event as WWE Champion and defeated Shinsuke Nakamura to leave Brooklyn with his title. He wasn’t booked for a match at this year’s show at the Barclays Center, but Mahal didn’t see that as a discouraging sign in the slightest.

“I see it as motivating to me,” Mahal said. “It’s motivation to me because I see where I was last year I was WWE Champion. Unfortunately this year [I didn’t] have a match. I could be disappointed. I could play the blame game. Or I could look deep into myself. What am I doing that I could make sure to do better to make sure I was on this card? I gotta go back to what made me WWE Champion so next year I can be Universal Champion or WWE Champion and main event SummerSlam again.”

Mahal said he has surprised the professional wrestling world before when he won the WWE Championship and he’s prepared to do it again. He found himself on the Raw brand after the 2018 Superstar Shake-Up with a different roster than the one he previously held the top title on. After some adjusting, Mahal is now meditating and displaying a centered persona.

A more-focused Modern Day Maharaja is looking to regain a top title as he confidently spoke about his belief that he could be the best.

“I did it before, I shocked the WWE Universe,” Mahal said. “I beat Randy Orton, one of the all-time greats, you know. Why can’t I beat a Brock Lesnar?

“Why can’t I beat AJ Styles? I beat AJ Styles in the past before. You know as soon I figure out why Kurt Angle keeps putting me in situations that I’m not ready for like making me defend the United States Championship on my first night on Raw. You know, I think I’m gonna be champion again. I think I’m going to be successful in WWE.”

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Jinder Mahal’s sudden push from jobber to WWE Champion last year came as a surprise to a lot of people, even himself. Mahal was recently a guest on Chasing Glory with Lilian Garcia and he described how he felt when he was told he would become a main-event superstar.

Mahal said he was informed he would be receiving a push after WrestleMania 33, but even he didn’t expect he would be in the main event. He said he expected to maybe challenge for a midcard title or just get in a storyline rivalry that would give him some TV time. He was happy when he was drafted to SmackDown Live because he knew it was the land of opportunity. Once he realized he would challenge for the WWE Championship he knew he had to step his game up.

“WrestleMania week I saw Road Dogg at the hotel in the hallways. He said, ‘Hey Jinder, after WrestleMania, good things are going to happen to you.’ I think the plan was that they were going to elevate me a little bit. I thought, cool, I can actually be in a storyline, be in the U.S Championship, the I.C Championship. So, I got drafted to SmackDown, which was a good sign. All along, I wanted to be drafted to SmackDown. Right when I got signed I would see Road Dogg in the hallways and telling him to please draft me to SmackDown because I saw people on SmackDown getting opportunities. I love Raw. Raw has a stigma about it, but us on the blue team have a chip on their shoulder, but they say SmackDown is the land of opportunity, which it really is,” Mahal said. “I was at a live event on a Monday Night, and they announced the Six-Pack Challenge match for the Number One Contender’s Match. I also see Tweets wondering how Jinder Mahal is in the Number One Contender’s Match, he hasn’t won a match in a long time. I think Baron Corbin, or Luke Harper was going to go in with Randy Orton. I remember getting my wrists taped and I asked who was going to face Randy Orton. I think Luke Harper was in there. He said to me, ‘it’s you.’ I was taken aback. What? I’m going to work with Randy Orton [for the WWE World Championship]? Five minutes later I saw Randy, and told him that we were going to work together. So, I had to grow a lot very quickly because to be a main event WWE Superstar is an entirely different ballgame. I always see people wishing they can be in the main event. If you were given that opportunity, would you sink or swim? I had no choice but to swim. I was fortunate enough to have a great relationship with Randy Orton. I believe Randy Orton is one of the greatest of all time. He is so smooth, so flawless.”

Mahal won the title from Orton at the Backlash pay-per-view, becoming the first-ever WWE Champion of Indian descent. He said the moment made him remember just how far he’s come in his professional wrestling career. Instead of getting too excited about being champion, he took the time to reflect on how much he had to struggle before he could achieve something so monumental.

“I know the way WWE works. Things change last minute. I didn’t want to bank on it, and B, I didn’t want it to get to my head yet. I didn’t want to get too excited because anything can change at any minute. The match happened. I won the Championship. The feeling was unreal. Just to see where I came from, where I started,” he said. “When I started wrestling I was still in high school. I would wrestle with guys that were 30 years old, we would drive like 20 hours to a show. I’m still in High School at this time. I wrestled for Stampede Wrestling with Tyson Kidd, Natalya, Viktor from Ascension. Couple of years later, Tyler Breeze started wrestling for us. I wrestled Tyler Breeze one time when there was like 20 people at the show. I’ve wrestled around five people, drove hours and hours and got paid $10. I often don’t share that side, but for years I was training, travelling, struggling. I wasn’t just made in the Developmental somewhere.”

As expressed in the Breaking Ground series on the WWE NetworkBaron Corbinspent a number of years in NXT honing his craft, and felt as if it was time for him to graduate to the main roster. As each day went by and he remained on the NXT roster, Corbin felt both frustrated and discouraged, as he wanted to be a member of the main roster. Corbin maximized his opportunity of performing on the main stage, as he was able to win the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal at WrestleMania 32 by last eliminating Kane.

After numerous feuds in the latter half of 2016 that kept him in the midcard shuffle, Corbin experienced a boost in his ranking after winning the Money in the Bank briefcase in June of 2017. Corbin then feuded with Shinsuke Nakamurawhile he carried the briefcase, but was unable to win the rivalry. Still carrying the briefcase, Corbin commenced a feud with John Cena which led to a match at SummerSlam.

Unfortunately, for Corbin, he joined the short list of people who were unable to successfully cash-in the briefcase for the world title, as a distraction from Cena resulted in a pinfall loss to Jinder Mahal.

Recently, Corbin was recently interviewed by All Things Wrestling Radio. During the interview, Corbin stated that 2017 was a whirlwind year for him from winning the Money in the Bank briefcase to unsuccessfully cashing it in. He also revealed when he was told that he was going to cash-in the briefcase.

“It was kinda like an hour before [SmackDown Live],” said Corbin. “We discussed, and then they made a decision that was gonna be the night. It didn’t work out, but, yeah it was definitely about an hour before. I mean, it’s the fun part of this business. You never know what your day is gonna hold. Some things could be very, very last minute. It could be at that very last second. So, it’s pretty wild, and it keeps you on your toes. That’s for sure.”

Corbin stated that keeping his mind positive and always looking forward was the key to bounce back from the MITB briefcase loss. Thankfully, for Corbin, he was able to bounce back by defeating AJ Styles and Tye Dillinger at Hell in a Cell to win the United States Championship, his first-ever title while competing in the WWE. He also picked up a big win against The Miz at Survivor Series in a champion vs. champion match, before losing his title at Clash of the Champions.

As previously noted, current and defending WWE Champion AJ Styles recently spoke with Lilian Garcia for the former WWE ring announcer’s podcast Chasing Glory. Among many other things, Styles talked about his feud with former WWE Champion Jinder Mahal, how Mahal took losing the title to Styles prior to Survivor Series (2017), possibly main eventing WrestleMania 34 with Shinsuke Nakamura, and why earning something is better than deserving it.

On the subject of working with Mahal, Styles indicated that the Canadian grappler was not accustomed to working like a top guy.

“At first, it was different.” Styles said, “Jinder came in and went straight to the top when he came to SmackDown and it was a position he wasn’t in. And when you get to this upper level, things change in the way that you work in the ring, the way you act, everything. And he had to learn really quick basically how to be a big star in WWE, which sounds easy, but it’s not.”

Styles went on to say that Mahal was a good brother about dropping the WWE Championship to ‘The Phenomenal One’ before Survivor Series. While it appeared as though WWE stalled Mahal, Styles suggested that things are cyclical in WWE and ‘The Modern Day Maharaja’ will get another shot at WWE’s top spot in time.

“He took it well. I literally said, ‘Jinder, what do you think?’ I wanted to know what he thought, if he was okay with it, because that’s important to me that, ‘I’m not better than you. You’ve been a great champion. What do you think, man?’ and he was okay with it. Again, he has been in the business for a while now, so he was very mature in the way he handled it and I appreciate that.” Styles continued, “sometimes you have to wait your tour and sometimes it takes longer than you’d like, but eventually you’ll be back on top.”

Styles, who did not main event WrestleMania last year, discussed having the opportunity to close the show at ‘The Showcase Of The Immortals’ this year with Nakamura. In Styles learned view, if his world title match versus ‘The Combat Artist’ does not go on last, WWE is going to wish it had.

“There could be a chance of headlining WrestleMania this year. I’ve got to make it through Fastlane before I can do this, but if I get the opportunity to wrestle Shinsuke Nakamura at WrestleMania, a match that no one has seen on U.S. soil, and only happened once in Japan, this could be huge.” Styles explained, “I need some payback [for NJPW Wrestle Kingdom 10], but he doesn’t have the home field advantage this time. So it’s exciting to think that something like that could happen, even if it’s not the main event. They’re going to wish it had been. I expect this match to be amazing. Nakamura is a great talent here and I feel like were going to tear the place apart to be honest with you.”

Finally, Styles indicated that he would rather hear ‘you have earned it’ than ‘you deserve it’.

“If you earn it, they can never say you didn’t work for it. Like, ‘you earned it’. That’s more powerful to me than ‘deserve’.” Styles added, “you can’t take something I’ve earned from me.”

Former WWE Champion Jinder Mahal was recently interviewed by The Independent to share his thoughts on who should be in the Hall of Fame. Without hesitation, Mahal’s pick was the “British Bulldog” Davey Boy Smith.

“[British Bulldog] had a great, storied career. From tagging with The Dynamite Kid to breaking out on his own, his career had a great evolution,” said Mahal. “He started in Stampede Wrestling in Calgary for Stu Hart and before that had been training in England before being brought in with Dynamite, and of course that classic, classic match against Bret Hart at Summerslam – that’s one of my all-time favorite matches. He’s just a great, great superstar in the history of WWE, so I don’t think it is a matter of if he’ll be inducted into the Hall of Fame, but when he’ll become a member.”

Mahal had a rather somber moment in Smith’s home country of the United Kingdom. He was the first-ever WWE Champion to lose the title there, losing to AJ Styles shortly before the 2017 Survivor Series. In contrast, British Bulldog experienced perhaps the biggest moment of his career, as he was able to defeat Bret Hart at Wembley Stadium in London at SummerSlam ’92 to win the Intercontinental Championship.

Despite losing the title in Manchester, Mahal gave much respect to Styles for dethroning him.

“It was the very first time in the history of WWE that the title had changed hands overseas. History was made that night and the match was probably one of the best I’ve ever had,” said Mahal. “I’ve said this before, but I feel that although I lost, I really won that night. The energy in the arena that night was amazing and AJ Styles really is phenomenal – the fans just love him. I think he might be the number one, top star in WWE in terms of fan reaction because everybody loves him.

“Everyone that night was genuinely so happy for him, so it was a little bit bittersweet for me. I was lay on my back on the mat with my eyes closed, listening to the reaction of the crowd and a couple of tears fell in the ring, of happiness as everyone was so pleased for him. It was a very cool moment and it was a moment I’ll never forget.”

Currently, Mahal is without a spot on the upcoming WWE Fastlane event, although he has set his sights on taking the United States Championship from Bobby Roode. Mahal also shared how grateful he is to be in the position he is now compared to when he was released.

“We are so blessed to be WWE superstars and sometimes I think that’s taken for granted; what we do, many, many people around the world wish they could do,” said Mahal. “I was even released by WWE but, fortunately, I was given a second opportunity and, after that, I was never going to take anything for granted. Every day is a blessing and an opportunity and it is up to you to take advantage of that.”

Source: The Independent

Former WWE Champion Jinder Mahal was a recent guest on the Sam Roberts Wrestling Podcast to discuss a variety of topics. One of the topics discussed was how he was booted from the champion vs. champion match against Brock Lesnar at Survivor Series.

Mahal was the first person to call out Lesnar for the match, and it was accepted by Paul Heyman. However, AJ Styles would step in and earn a No. 1 contender spot for the WWE Championship, and the two clashed on an episode of SmackDown Live prior to The Survivor Series. On November 7, 2017, in Manchester, England, Styles defeated Mahal to win his second WWE Champion and faced Lesnar later in the month in the champion vs. champion match instead.

When asked about losing this marquee spot to face Lesnar at Survivor Series, Mahal explained how he reacted to whether he lost his spot as one of the top heels in WWE.

“I wasn’t worried at all,” said Mahal. “A lot of people say, ‘It’s disappointing you got the push.’ No, I didn’t get the push, I made the push. I believe that every WWE superstar is in charge 100 percent of his own destiny. It’s up to me. You know, you drop the title, you win the title, but that’s part of the storyline. That match I had with AJ [Styles], even though I lost the title, it’s like I lost the match, I really did win. I had an awesome outing, awesome match, came back and got a big hug from Vince.”

Mahal added that he told Vince McMahon that he is going to be the WWE Champion long before he won it, and told Vince that he will be WWE Champion again when he lost it, and “he likes to hear stuff like that.”

“I was wrestling, like, wrestling Darren Young on Superstars every week, but I was telling Vince like, ‘Man, Vince. I wasn’t even on Raw or SmackDown every week.'”

Regarding being in the United States Championship picture, Mahal addressed if this was a demotion from where he was at the middle of last year.

“No, it’s not. It’s the United States Championship,” said Mahal. “I’m still on SmackDown, on the live events I’m still in a main, main spot, and that’s up to me to maintain that level. You know, maintain that level of performance, and that’s 100 percent up to me. If you see me fall down the card, it’s my own fault. If I’m staying at this level, it’s because of the hard work that I’m doing and I ultimately will become WWE Champion again. I 100 percent believe that.”

Mahal also addressed fans stating that he won the WWE Championship due to WWE pushing the India market.

“India was still there when I got released,” said Mahal. “India was there when I first debuted. India’s been there the entire time. You know, WWE went to India while I was released also, too, but they didn’t bring me back. So, everybody says that, that’s okay, they can say that, they can say whatever they want. I wasn’t even WWE Champion when they went to India! Yeah, so, it’s fine. It [doesn’t] bother me. Yeah, yeah, I understand it’s a business, they do whatever makes money. India is their largest market.”

Mahal also revealed that he was the one who linked Mahabali Shera to WWE when he was No. 1 contender for the WWE Championship, and he allowed Shera to stay with him for a couple of weeks.

You can hear the full interview here.

Konnan was a guest on the most recent episode of The Ross Report and he had a wide-ranging conversation with Jim Ross. Konnan discussed the heel heat Jinder Mahal has generated since he was pushed into the main event picture earlier this year.

“Jinder Mahal has real heat. More heat than anybody,” Konnan said. “People were talking about how he wasn’t used well the first time around he was in WWE and now he is up here in today’s world of great work rate, you have to be in the same conversation of an AJ Styles or Samoa Joe. Some of them, they don’t like his work rate so that gives him some real heat.”

Mahal’s sudden push from mid-card jobber to becoming WWE Champion over the summer wasn’t popular among the majority of the WWE Universe. He was able to become one of the top heels in the company before losing the title to AJ Styles last month.

Another superstar that is becoming a top heel in WWE is Elias. Konnan dished out a ton of praise for The Drifter, saying he’s one of his favorite superstars at the moment.

“The most over guy to me on either Raw or SmackDown is Elias. That is my favorite character. I love the way he comes out and buries the crowd. I love how he sings his song and buries the crowd,” Konnan said. “His delivery and timing is incredible. He is really funny to me. Obviously, they haven’t put him in any good matches where he means anything. I mean, they really buried him when they did that angle with Jason Jordan and how he came out and threw vegetables at him, which was very hoaky, but I love watching Elias. He’s my favorite right now.”

One thing Konnan hasn’t been happy about is the current writing in the WWE. He said a major problem the company faces is the 50/50 booking because they aren’t really listening to the fans. He’s grown frustrated with the writing because he thinks the solution is as simple as hiring better writers.

“Jimmy Jacobs, who used to write for Chris Jericho when he was in WWE. He is in TNA writing for them now. He was on my podcast and we had asked him how many writers they had. He said something along the lines of having 25 writers. He even said that some guys specifically do comedy; some guys specifically do promos and that they are very talented guys,” Konnan said. “I asked him why the shows are so bad, then? They do such a good job in burying people than putting people over. That 50/50 booking doesn’t help anybody. He was telling me how it is really hard to do 3 hours of television every week; I say why not get better writers then? If you watch Breaking Bad or Game of Thrones, but I bet you that if you told them that their show was going to be three hours every Sunday instead of one hour it would still be a great show. I just get frustrated when WWE, who invented everything like vignette, putting people over and creating superstars, I just feel as though they don’t listen to the crowd, and it’s just basically because it is a party of one where you have to have Vince McMahon happy.”