What Is A Gauntlet Match? How WWE Will Decide GUNTHER's WrestleMania 40 Opponent

With WWE WrestleMania 40 about a month away, the card for the two-night event is starting to solidify, and it's now clear how GUNTHER's WWE Intercontinental Championship challenger will be determined. The March 11 installment of "WWE Raw" will include a gauntlet match, with the winner earning the right to challenge GUNTHER at next month's show.


But what is a gauntlet match exactly? For those who are unfamiliar, Wrestling Inc. is here to break down the stipulation for you. A gauntlet match essentially serves as a consecutive series of singles matches. Two competitors, usually random, will start together in the ring. After one is pinned or submitted, the loser is out and the winner remains in the ring waiting for the next competitor. This continues until all opponents have come out and one victor remains.

Gauntlet matches have been around for a long time, seemingly originating in Japan in the 1980s, but WWE has begun using the stipulation more frequently in recent years. On the February 19, 2018 episode of "Raw," one gauntlet match took up nearly two hours of the show, with Seth Rollins putting on a memorable performance throughout the majority of the match.


Perhaps even more notable was the gauntlet on the February 12, 2019 installment of "WWE SmackDown." That match saw Kofi Kingston start the gauntlet and outlast every competitor except Randy Orton. Though he didn't win, the match was one of the defining early moments of "Kofi-Mania." The company tried to re-create the magic with another gauntlet match a month later, and Kingston went on to win the WWE Championship.

The announced competitors for the upcoming match are Sami Zayn, Chad Gable, Shinsuke Nakamura, Bronson Reed, Ricochet, and JD McDonagh. Zayn and Gable seem to be the favorites to win, but nothing is certain until the six wrestlers sort things out on the next "Raw."