Jinder Mahal Claims He Idolized Triple H When He Was Young

Jinder Mahal has had a heck of a year. He won the WWE Championship from Randy Orton at Backlash last May in a surprise upset. He was so muscular people thought he had an injury. He packed on even more muscle for a Survivor Series match with Brock Lesnar, only to lose the title — and therefore the Lesnar match — to AJ Styles on SmackDown Live. All those extra muscles, for nothing!

But this Saturday, Mahal faces Triple H in a main event match in Delhi, India. It’s worth noting that despite how he’s billed in WWE, Jinder’s actually from Canada. Still, this remains a very big deal for Mahal, and it is his first time wrestling in India as a major focal point of WWE’s roster.

As for his opponent, Jinder has nothing but admiration for Triple H, as he made clear in an interview with SportsKeeda:

“Of course, I grew up watching Triple H. I idolized him from his time with DX, or even before that when he was Hunter Hearst Helmsley or even when I was watching him in WCW as Terra Ryzing. He’s had a very, very storied career and he already is a living legend.

“In an interview, he said that his job now is to ensure that the next generation of WWE superstars are at par with the legends. I look to test myself and see where I measure up against Triple H. But I competed with him on the same show, a couple of weeks ago in South America and this is the same Triple H that I’ve been seeing for years. He hasn’t missed a step. He is still the same game that he was back then. He’s always in great shape, always in great conditioning. He’s tough as nails and a very, very dangerous opponent. I’m not taking him lightly.

“This is my biggest match, in my career. But I need to make a statement on Saturday night.”

Jinder also spoke about his lengthy title reign, which he calls “a dream come true,” and acknowledges that AJ Styles is the best wrestler on the roster, saying, “I’ve got to give it to him. He really is a worthy opponent. He’s very, very tough. He’s unpredictable. You don’t know if he’s going to come at you off the top rope or if he’ll tie you up in a submission move.”

Whether you enjoyed Jinder Mahal’s title reign or not, he comes off very pretty down to Earth and likable here. Everyone who knows him describes him as a great dude and a sweetheart, and that definitely comes through in this interview.