Gunther Gives Storyline Explanation For WWE Name Change
The controversial name change was addressed on last night's episode of NXT
On last night's episode of NXT 2.0, WWE attempted to explain the former WALTER's name change to Gunther.
The former NXT UK Champion revealed the new name following his victory over Roderick Strong in the main event of the January 18 episode of the show.
Attempting to explain the change in kayfabe terms via a pre-taped vignette on Tuesday, Gunther said (in German) that WALTER was the name that his family had given him in honour of his grandfather, the man that introduced him to wrestling, and that he now wanted to leave the past behind and create his own future with Imperium under his own name.
Prior to the name change, there was controversy over WWE's attempt to trademark the name Gunther Stark after it emerged that the name was the same as that of a Nazi Germany U-Boat commander during World War II.
WWE subsequently abandoned the trademark and the name was simply shortened to Gunther.
The move was still controversial amongst some fans, who were dismayed that WWE would choose to change WALTER's name after he had performed under that moniker on WWE television for three years.
Cultaholic have previously covered why WWE actually changed WALTER's name, which you can read here.