One of the biggest names on WWE’s NXT brand doesn’t think he would be a good fit in Raw’s Imperium group.
Imperium is a three-man group on the WWE Raw brand led by the longest reigning Intercontinental Champion of all-time GUNTHER, who is joined by Ludwig Kaiser and Giovanni Vinci. There is a clear pecking order in the group with GUNTHER as the leader, Kaiser is right after him and Vinci has become Kaiser’s responsibility.
One of GUNTHER’s greatest opponents in WWE has been Ilja Dragunov, who at one point beat GUNTHER for the NXT UK Championship. The two men have had multiple Match of the Year contenders in the past, but have been kept apart for a few years.
In an interview with TV Insider, the NXT Champion Dragunov was asked about a rumor in the past regarding the possibility of him joining Imperium. Since Dragunov is from Russia, there was speculation that he could be part of the group the three Europeans. Dragunov dismissed the idea.
“No specifics. I just saw something about that on the internet. Rumors of me being in Imperium, but who actually wants that? Who has this idea?”
There couldn’t be someone who is more different and opposite than me to Imperium. All of those guys are outstanding and supreme technical wrestlers. But they are cold and stoic. I’m the absolute opposite and all over the place, I can be nuts. I’m the ‘Mad Dragon.’ I’m a different animal.”
“Those personas are so different. What is the benefit of my being in this group? I don’t think it would make sense.”
Ilja Dragunov will defend the NXT Championship this Tuesday at Halloween Havoc Night 2
In the immediate future, the “Mad Dragon” Ilja Dragunov is focused on his big NXT Title match against Carmelo Hayes, who he faces this Tuesday on Halloween night, October 31st. Hayes is the former NXT Champion whom Dragunov defeated at NXT No Mercy earlier this month.
Here’s what else is coming on NXT Halloween Havoc Night 2 this Tuesday night:
* Tables, Ladders & Scares Match: The Creed Brothers vs. Angel Garza & Humberto Carrillo
* NXT North American Championship: Dominik Mysterio (c) vs. Nathan Frazer
* Women’s Tag Team Championships: Chelsea Green & Piper Niven (c) vs. Jacy Jayne & Thea Hail
* NXT Championship: Ilja Dragunov (c) vs. Carmelo Hayes
* Tiffany Stratton vs. Fallon Henley
* NXT Women’s Breakout Tournament Finals: Kelani Jordan vs. Lola Vice
As always, we’ll have a full review on TJRWrestling after the show.