Walter Hahn (born August 20, 1987) is an Austrian professional wrestler and trainer better known by the ring name WALTER. He is currently signed to WWE performing for their NXT UK brand where he is the current NXT UK Champion in his first reign. He has appeared in a number of promotions in Europe, Japan and North America, most notably Westside Xtreme Wrestling, PROGRESS Wrestling and Pro Wrestling Guerrilla (PWG).
Professional wrestling career
Westside Xtreme Wrestling (2007–present)
Walter made his Westside Xtreme Wrestling debut on May 4, 2007, in a match that also involved Atsushi Aoki, Adam Polak, and Tengkwa. He defeated Zack Sabre Jr. to win the wXw Unified World Wrestling Championship on October 2, 2010 in Oberhausen, Germany. He lost the title to Daisuke Sekimoto on January 15, 2011, but won it back later that year on May 2, 2011, during a Big Japan Pro Wrestling card in Tokyo, Japan. He would then hold the title for 383 days, before losing it to El Generico on May 19, 2012. In the early May 2012 Big van Walter was defeated by Yoshihito Sasaki in a match to crown the inaugural BJW World Strong Heavyweight champion in Yokohama, Japan. He won the title for a third time on July 27, 2014, defeating Tommy End at Fans Appreciation Night, but lost it to Karsten Beck on January 17, 2015.
Walter and partner Robert Dreissker defeated RockSkillet (Jay Skillet and Jonathan Gresham) to win the wXw World Tag Team Championship at day three of 16 Carat Gold on March 3, 2013. They would later lose the titles in Hamburg, Germany to Hot and Spicy (Axel Dieter Jr. and Da Mack). He partnered Zack Sabre Jr. to win the vacant wXw World Tag Team Championship on October 4, 2015 in the finals of the 2015 World Tag Team Tournament, but relinquished the title at the wXw Fifteenth Anniversary Show on December 12, 2015, losing to Cerebrus (Ilja Dragunov and Robert Dreissker). Walter and Ringkampf stablemate Timothy Thatcher defeated Massive Product (David Starr and Jurn Simmons) to win the wXw World Tag Team Championship in the finals of the 2017 wXw World Tag Team League on October 8, 2017. On March 11 Walter and Thatcher lost the wXw Tag Titles to Da Mack and John Klinger.
He is the head trainer at the wXw Wrestling Academy.
Progress Wrestling (2015–present)
On May 24, 2015 Walter debuted as Big Daddy Walter in Progress Wrestling at the 2015 Super Strong Style 16 Tournament at the Electric Ballroom in London, losing to Rampage Brown in the first round. The two met again later in 2015 at Chapter 23: What A Time To Be Alive! in a match notable for the ring breaking after Brown was whipped into the corner. He entered the Super Strong Style 16 Tournament again in 2016, reaching the quarter-finals before being eliminated by Chris Hero.
Walter participated in the tournament to determine the inaugural Progress Atlas champion in 2016 but he finished the tournament with 2 points. At Chapter 47, Ringkampf (Walter, Axel Dieter Jr. and Timothy Thatcher) challenged British Strong Style (Pete Dunne, Trent Seven and Tyler Bate) for all of their championships, in a six-man tag team match, unsuccessfully challenging all of them. He defeated Matt Riddle to win the Progress Atlas Championship at Chapter 51: Screaming For Progress at the O2 Academy Birmingham. He lost the title to Riddle a little over a month later on a Progress card in New York City, but recaptured it at Chapter 55: Chase The Sun at Alexandra Palace in a Three Way match that also involved Matt Riddle and Timothy Thatcher. At Chapter 68: Super Strong Style 16 Tournament Edition 2018, Walter vacated the Atlas title in order to chase the PROGRESS world title, held by Travis Banks. At Chapter 74: Mid Week Matters, he defeated Banks to win the title.
Walter unsuccessfully challenged for the WWN Championship the next night at Evolve 91 in New York City in a Four Way match that also involved Matt Riddle, Keith Lee, and Tracy Williams. He again made an unsuccessful challenge for the WWN Championship on 9 December 2017 when he was defeated by Lee at Evolve 96 in New York City.
Pro Wrestling Guerrilla (2017–2018)
Walter made his Pro Wrestling Guerrilla (PWG) debut by entering the 2017 Battle of Los Angeles tournament, where he was eliminated by eventual finalist Keith Lee in the opening round. He was then defeated by Ricochet at All Star Weekend 13 - Night One. The next day, he got his first PWG victory by defeating Zack Sabre Jr. in a match that was awarded a prestigious five-star rating by Dave Meltzer in the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
In January 2018, Walter unsuccessfully challenged for the PWG World Tag Team Championship with Ringkampf partner Timothy Thatcher, losing to the defending Chosen Bros (Jeff Cobb and Matt Riddle). On April 21, 2018, Walter defeated champion Keith Lee and Jonah Rock in a three-way match to win the PWG World Championship.
Defiant Wrestling (2018)
It was announced that Walter was going to be added to the Defiant Internet Championship match of David Starr against Travis Banks at Lights Out. However Banks didn't compete due to a foot injury. Instead Walter would later defeat Starr to become the #1 Contender for Banks' title. Which would end in a draw at No Regrets. On June 2 WALTER defeated Banks and Zack Sabre Jr. to win the Defiant Internet Championship.
On November 26, 2018, it was announced that WALTER had signed a contract with the company and would be reporting to the NXT UK brand.
- Finishing moves
- Burning Lariat
- Golden Bomb (Pumphandle Powerbomb)
- Gojira Clutch (Rear Naked Choke)
- Fire Thunder Driver (Jumping Sitout Piledriver)
- Signature moves
- Butterfly suplex, sometimes from the top rope
- Diving splash
- German suplex
- Jumping knee drop
- Knife edge chops
- Seated Press
- Shotgun dropkick
- Tag teams and stables
- "Der Bulle aus Wien" (The Bull from Vienna)
- "The Ring General"
- Entrance themes
- "Symphony No. 9 - Allegro Con Fuoco (AstraVexuitar Version)" by Antonín Dvořák
Championships and accomplishments
- Fight Club: PRO
- Infinity Trophy (1 time)
- Pro Wrestling Fighters
- PWF Nordeuropäische Wrestling Meisterschaft Championship
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated
- PWI ranked him #315 of the best 500 singles wrestlers in the PWI 500 in 2016
- Westside Xtreme Wrestling
- WXw Unified World Wrestling Championship (3 times)
- WXw World Tag Team Championship (3 times) with Robert Dreissker (1), Zack Sabre, Jr. (1) Timothy Thatcher (1)
- 16 Carat Gold Tournament (2010)
- wXw World Tag Team Tournament (2015) – with Zack Sabre Jr.
- World Tag Team League (2017) – with Timothy Thatcher
- Wrestling Observer Newsletter
- 5 Star Match (2017) vs. Zack Sabre Jr. on October 21
- 5 1/4 Star Match (2019) vs. Tyler Bate on August 31
- Europe MVP (2018)