Jinder Mahal: Drew McIntyre Wouldn't Have Been WWE Champion If I Hadn't Done It First
"I bet if I didn't become WWE Champion, Drew wouldn't have. You know why? Because I showed him the way."
Jinder Mahal has sewed the seeds for a potential feud Drew McIntyre in WWE, questioning why his former stablemate's WWE Championship reign is praised while his own is largely forgotten.
Mahal and McIntyre were both released by WWE on the same day back in 2014 and, although both would be re-signed by the promotion, Mahal would return first and won the WWE Title from Randy Orton at Backlash 2017. He would hold the belt until November of the same year.
McIntyre, meanwhile, would win his first WWE Championship from Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania 36, and has enjoyed the run of his career since that Title victory last April.
The Modern Day Maharaja says he has no issue with McIntyre but believes the Scottish Warrior wouldn't have been WWE Champion had Mahal not won the belt before him.
Speaking on The Bump, Mahal said: "So, my problem is not with Drew. My problem is with the idea that Drew McIntyre was celebrated as a champion [as if] he overcame such enormous odds.
"Let's back it up. Me and Drew were a part of 3MB together. Me and Drew got released the exact same day. I made it back to WWE faster, better. I became WWE Champion faster than Drew McIntyre, yet I wasn't celebrated. I was called 'the experiment' or whatever. I don't have a book right now. Drew has a book. Drew is doing media nonstop. This is one of the only times I've done media in the last few months. Why am I not celebrated the same way Drew McIntyre is celebrated?
"Our stories are parallel. Just because you don't hear about my hardships in life [that] doesn't mean I've had an easy route to the WWE or becoming WWE Champion. I've had just as many challenges as Drew has had. Yet I'm not acknowledged.
"I bet if I didn't become WWE Champion, Drew wouldn't have. You know why? Because I showed him the way. I laid the blueprint down for Drew. Drew followed the same game plan that I did; comeback, best shape possible, target the biggest guy, make an impact. But here we are."
Mahal is reportedly slated to have a big summer program with McIntyre in WWE, and it appears the foundations for their rivalry have now been laid.