One of the most well-received and unexpected storylines in WWE this year was Kofi Kingston‘s journey to winning the WWE Championship at WrestleMania 35. After an amazing performance in the Elimination Chamber, multiple gauntlet matches and McMahon family obstacles, and strong fan support, Kingston ultimately got his title shot and defeated Daniel Bryan on WWE’s biggest show of the year, winning a world championship for the first time in his eleven years with the company. On Corey Graves’ After the Bell podcast, Kingston revealed that backstage, Bryan played a significant role in making that match happen.
In Kingston’s words (transcript via Fightful):
“The plans weren’t for me to be at WrestleMania. I’m not sure who it was for Daniel to face, but Daniel went in and went to bat for me and the situation and the title match for us to happen. He had a big part in it too. It’s a testament to his state of mind as far as advancing the business and doing the right thing for the people and best product.”
Kingston was on Graves’ podcast with the rest of The New Day promoting their own official WWE podcast, Feel the Power. Its first episode included Kingston, Big E, and Xavier Woods talking about how their team began, and Woods shed more light on their experiences with the creative side of WWE, saying teaming up with E and Kingston was “one of the harder things for me to do because my whole career, I tried to separate myself from Kofi because I was always told, ‘We have a high-energy black guy. You need to be something completely different.’”