The post match from the 2 week old finals of the SmackDown World Cup tournament concluded this week on the show. Ricochet faced the Intercontinental Champion Gunther with the IC title on the line. Before the match, Adam Pearce ejected the champion’s Imperium compatriots Ludwig Kaiser and Giovanni Vinci from ringside. This ensured the match would have a clean winner in the end, without any interference.
In the highly entertaining match, both seasoned veterans put on a wrestling clinic and used their special offence against each other. Ricochet was using his speed and high flying maneuvers whereas Gunther was using his size and technical superiority. The champion’s famous chest numbing chops were on full display, as were Ricochet’s flips and kicks. The match had all kinds of suplexes and high flying moves.
Great match between Gunther and Ricochet. But this looked like it hurt 😦#wwe #SmackDown pic.twitter.com/5Noc26g4fw
— Christine (@ShiningPolaris) December 17, 2022Advertisement
In this hard fought back and forth contest, Gunther retained his belt in the end via pinfall after the Last Symphony. This new finishing move from the champion debuted a couple of weeks ago. It was a Fisherman’s Carry into a Sit out Bodyslam.
WHAT. A. MATCH!#SmackDown pic.twitter.com/qrcNZQh6O5
— WWE on BT Sport (@btsportwwe) December 17, 2022Advertisement
After the match, Imperium came to the ring to celebrate their Ring General’s victory and they started bullying Ricochet. It was Braun Strowman who came to his rescue from the Europeans.
To earn this shot at the Austrian, Ricochet had to go through Mustafa Ali, Braun Strowman and Santos Escobar in the SmackDown World Cup tournament. He won the World Cup trophy and with it came this shot at the IC championship title that happened today.
The Intercontinental Championship has a rich history spanning over four decades. All legendary wrestlers from Pat Patterson to Brett Hart to The Rock to Roman Reigns has held it. It has become the next big sought after title along with the United States Championship. This has happened because of Roman Reigns’ chokehold over both the WWE and Universal Championships over the years. Both WWE and Universal titles now seem unattainable for most WWE superstars.