IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship

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IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship
A caucasian male with black hair, and wearing black wrestling tights, standing inside a wrestling ring, with a championship belt around his waist.
Prince Devitt with the championship belt in November 2010.
Details
Current champion(s) Kushida
Date won July 4, 2014
Promotion New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW)
Date established February 6, 1986

The IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship is a professional wrestling junior heavweight championship owned by the New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) promotion. "IWGP" is the acronym of NJPW's governing body, the International Wrestling Grand Prix. The title was introduced on February 6, 1986 at a NJPW show. Only wrestlers under the junior heavyweight weight-limit may hold the championship. NJPW currently controls two junior heavyweight championships: the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship and the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship. The weight-limit for the tag team title is 100 kg (220 lb); it is assumed that this title has the same weight-limit.[1] From August 5, 1996 until November 5, 1997 the title was part of the J-Crown, or J-Crown Octuple Unified Championship. The J-Crown was an assembly of eight different championships from several different promotions. It was created on August 5, 1996 when The Great Sasuke won an eight-man tournament. The IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship, the British Commonwealth Junior Heavyweight Championship, the NWA World Junior Heavyweight Championship, the NWA World Welterweight Championship, the UWA World Junior Light Heavyweight Championship, the WAR International Junior Heavyweight Championship, the WWA World Junior Light Heavyweight Championship, and the WWF Light Heavyweight Championship were the eight championships that were involved.[2] On November 5, 1997, then-champion Shinjiro Otani vacated all J-Crown belts but the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship after the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) retook control of its Light Heavyweight title, effectively ending the J-Crown. Being a professional wrestling championship, the title is won as a result of a predetermined outcome.

Overall, there have been 68 reigns shared among 32 wrestlers. Title changes happen mostly at NJPW-promoted events, as it has only changed hands at non-NJPW events twice. Reigns 36 and 37 occurred on World Championship Wrestling's Nitro television broadcast, when Juventud Guerrera defeated Jushin Liger on November 29, 1999, and on December 6, 1999 when Liger retrieved the championship by defeating Guerrera's stand-in Psychosis. The inaugural champion was Shiro Koshinaka, who defeated The Cobra on February 6, 1986 in the finals of a tournament. Liger holds the record of most reigns, with 11. At 628 days, Liger's sixth reign is the longest in the title's history. Liger, with a combined 11 reigns, holds the record for most days as champion at 2,245. Guerrera's only reigns holds the record for shortest reign at one week. With 11 successful defenses, Minoru Tanaka's reign under the ring name "Heat" had the most during a single reign. Over his 11 reigns, Liger successfully defended the title 31 times, the most of any champion. With zero, El Samurai's second reign, Hiroshi Hase's second reign, Tiger Mask IV's fourth and sixth reigns, Liger's fourth reign, Guerrera's only reign, Pegasus Kid's only reign and Low Ki's third reign are all tied for least successful defenses. Guerrera and Pegasus Kid are the only champions to not successfully defend the title once. Kushida is the current champion in his first reign, after defeating Kota Ibushi on July 4, 2014, at NJPW's Kizuna Road 2014 to win the title.

Title history[edit]

# Order in reign history
Reign The reign number for the specific set of wrestlers listed
Event The event in which the title was won
Successful defenses The number of successful defenses the champion had during his reign
Used for vacated reigns so as not to count it as an official reign
N/A The information is not available or is unknown
+ Indicates the current reign is changing daily
# Wrestlers Reign Date Days
held
Location Event Successful defenses Notes
1 Shiro Koshinaka 1 February 6, 1986 102 Tokyo, Japan New Year Dash 1986 1 Koshinaka defeated The Cobra in a tournament final to become the first champion.[3]
2 Nobuhiko Takada 1 May 19, 1986 123 Tokyo, Japan IWGP Champion Series 1986 6
3 Shiro Koshinaka 2 September 19, 1986 317 Fukuoka, Japan Challenge Spirit 1986 2
Vacated August 2, 1987 N/A N/A Koshinaka vacated the championship due to injuring his right ankle.
4 Kuniaki Kobayashi 1 August 20, 1987 129 Tokyo, Japan Summer Night Fever in Kokugikan 1 Kobayashi defeated Nobuhiko Takada to win the vacant championship.
5 Hiroshi Hase 1 December 27, 1987 152 Tokyo, Japan Inoki Toukon Live III 3
6 Owen Hart 1 May 27, 1988 28 Sendai, Japan IWGP Champion Series 1988 1
7 Shiro Koshinaka 3 June 24, 1988 265 Osaka, Japan IWGP Champion Series 1988 6
8 Hiroshi Hase 2 March 16, 1989 70 Yokohama, Japan Big Fight Series 0
9 Jushin Liger 1 May 25, 1989 77 Osaka, Japan Battle Satellite 1989 in Osaka 2
10 Naoki Sano 1 August 10, 1989 174 Tokyo, Japan Live event 2
11 Jushin Liger 2 January 31, 1990 200 Osaka, Japan Live event 1
12 Pegasus Kid 1 August 19, 1990 74 Tokyo, Japan Live event 0 [4]
13 Jushin Liger 3 November 1, 1990 165 Tokyo, Japan Dream Tour 1990 2
Vacated April 15, 1991 N/A N/A Liger vacated the championship so a new champion could be decided in the Top of the Super Juniors tournament.
14 Norio Honaga 1 April 30, 1991 43 Tokyo, Japan Explosion Tour 1991 2 Honaga defeated Jushin Liger in the finals of the Top of the Super Juniors tournament.
15 Jushin Liger 4 June 12, 1991 58 Tokyo, Japan Fighting Connection: Ultra-High and Mighty Declaration II 0
16 Akira Nogami 1 August 9, 1991 88 Tokyo, Japan Violent Storm in Kokugikan 1
17 Norio Honaga 2 November 5, 1991 95 Tokyo, Japan Tokyo 3Days Battle 1
18 Jushin Liger 5 February 8, 1992 139 Sapporo, Japan Fighting Spirit 1992 3 Liger's WCW World Light Heavyweight Championship was also on the line.
19 El Samurai 1 June 26, 1992 149 Tokyo, Japan Masters of Wrestling 3
20 Último Dragón 1 November 22, 1992 43 Tokyo, Japan Wrestling Scramble 1992 1 [5]
21 Jushin Liger 6 January 4, 1993 628 Tokyo, Japan Fantastic Story in Tokyo Dome 5
Vacated September 24, 1994 N/A N/A Liger vacated the championship due to fracturing his left ankle.
22 Norio Honaga 3 September 27, 1994 145 Osaka, Japan G1 Climax Special 1994 6 Honaga defeated Wild Pegasus in a tournament final to win the vacant championship.
23 Koji Kanemoto 1 February 19, 1995 73 Tokyo, Japan Fighting Spirit 1995 2
24 Sabu 1 May 3, 1995 42 Fukuoka, Japan Wrestling Dontaku 1995 1
25 Koji Kanemoto 2 June 14, 1995 204 Tokyo, Japan Fighting Spirit Legend 2 This match was also for Kanemoto's UWA World Welterweight Championship.
26 Jushin Liger 7 January 4, 1996 116 Tokyo, Japan Wrestling World (1996) 2
27 The Great Sasuke 1 April 29, 1996 165 Tokyo, Japan Battle Formation 5 On August 5, 1996, Sasuke won an 8-man tournament to form the J-Crown, an octuple-belt championship that includes the IWGP Junior Heavyweight title; these titles were still considered separate, but were defended together.
28 Último Dragón 2 October 11, 1996 85 Osaka, Japan Osaka Crush Night 7
29 Jushin Liger 8 January 4, 1997 183 Tokyo, Japan Wrestling World (1997) 4 Liger lost the WAR International Junior Heavyweight Championship from the J-Crown on June 6, 1997, but continued to defend the other 7 belts.
30 El Samurai 2 July 6, 1997 35 Sapporo, Japan Summer Struggle 1997 0
31 Shinjiro Otani 1 August 10, 1997 181 Nagoya, Japan The Four Heaven in Nagoya Dome 5 On November 5, 1997, Otani vacated all J-Crown belts but the IWGP Junior Heavyweight title after the WWF retook control of its Light Heavyweight title, effectively ending the J-Crown.
32 Jushin Liger 9 February 7, 1998 403 Sapporo, Japan Fighting Spirit 1998 8
33 Koji Kanemoto 3 March 17, 1999 164 Hiroshima, Japan Hyper Battle 1999 3
34 Kendo Kashin 1 August 28, 1999 44 Tokyo, Japan Jingu Climax 1
35 Jushin Liger 10 October 11, 1999 49 Tokyo, Japan Final Dome 1
36 Juventud Guerrera 1 November 29, 1999 7 Denver, United States Nitro 0
37 Jushin Liger 11 December 6, 1999 227 Milwaukee, United States Nitro 3 Psychosis replaced Guerrera in the match due to Guerrera suffering a fractured right arm.
38 Tatsuhito Takaiwa 1 July 20, 2000 101 Sapporo, Japan Summer Struggle 2000 2
39 Minoru Tanaka 1 October 29, 2000 264 Kobe, Japan Get a Right!! 2
40 Masayuki Naruse 1 July 20, 2001 80 Sapporo, Japan Dome Quake 1
41 Kendo Kashin 2 October 8, 2001 131 Tokyo, Japan Indicate of Next 2
42 Minoru Tanaka 2 February 16, 2002 153 Tokyo, Japan Fighting Spirit 2002 3
43 Koji Kanemoto 4 July 19, 2002 278 Sapporo, Japan Sapporo Toukon Memorial Day 1st 6
44 Tiger Mask IV 1 April 23, 2003 153 Hiroshima, Japan Crush 4 [6]
Vacated September 23, 2003 N/A N/A The championship was vacated so it could be contested for in a battle royal.
45 Jado 1 October 13, 2003 62 Tokyo, Japan Ultimate Crush II 1 Jado defeated Dick Togo, El Samurai, Gedo, Heat, Jushin Liger, Katsushi Takemura, Koji Kanemoto, Masahito Kakihara, Masayuki Naruse and Tiger Mask IV in a battle royal to win the vacant championship.
46 Heat 3 December 14, 2003 387 Nagoya, Japan Battle Final 2003 11 [7]
47 Tiger Mask IV 2 January 4, 2005 277 Tokyo, Japan Toukon Festival: Wrestling World 3
48 Black Tiger IV 1 October 8, 2005 134 Tokyo, Japan Toukon Souzou New Chapter 1 This match was also for Black Tiger IV's NWA World Junior Heavyweight Championship.
49 Tiger Mask IV 3 February 19, 2006 73 Tokyo, Japan Circuit2006 Acceleration 1 This match was also for Black Tiger IV's NWA World Junior Heavyweight Championship.
50 Koji Kanemoto 5 May 3, 2006 235 Fukuoka, Japan New Japan Cup 2006 Special 1
51 Minoru 4 December 24, 2006 194 Tokyo, Japan Battle Xmas! Catch the Victory 4
52 Ryusuke Taguchi 1 July 6, 2007 155 Tokyo, Japan New Japan Pro Wrestling 35th Anniversary Tour Circuit 2007 New Japan Soul C.T.U Farewell Tour 4
53 Wataru Inoue 1 December 8, 2007 191 Osaka, Japan New Japan Pro Wrestling 35th Anniversary Tour Circuit 2007 New Japan Alive 3
Vacated June 16, 2008 N/A N/A The championship was vacated when Inoue moved to the heavyweight division.
54 Tiger Mask IV 4 July 8, 2008 75 Tokyo, Japan New Japan Trill 0 Tiger Mask IV defeated Prince Devitt in a tournament final to win the vacant championship.
55 Low Ki 1 September 21, 2008 105 Kobe, Japan Circuit2008 New Japan Generation 1
56 Tiger Mask IV 5 January 4, 2009 223 Tokyo, Japan Wrestle Kingdom III in Tokyo Dome 4 [8][9]
57 Místico 1 August 15, 2009 85 Tokyo, Japan G1 Climax 2009: New Lords, New Laws 2 [10]
58 Tiger Mask IV 6 November 8, 2009 57 Tokyo, Japan Destruction '09 0 [11]
59 Naomichi Marufuji 1 January 4, 2010 166 Tokyo, Japan Wrestle Kingdom IV in Tokyo Dome 5 [12]
60 Prince Devitt 1 June 19, 2010 364 Osaka, Japan Dominion 6.19 7
61 Kota Ibushi 1 June 18, 2011 85 Osaka, Japan Dominion 6.18 2
Vacated September 12, 2011 N/A N/A The championship was vacated after Ibushi was sidelined with a shoulder injury.[13]
62 Prince Devitt 2 September 19, 2011 227 Kobe, Japan Kantaro Hoshino Memorial Show 4 Devitt defeated Kushida to win the vacant championship.
63 Low Ki 2 May 3, 2012 87 Fukuoka, Japan Wrestling Dontaku 2012 1
64 Kota Ibushi 2 July 29, 2012 71 Tokyo, Japan Last Rebellion 2
65 Low Ki 3 October 8, 2012 34 Tokyo, Japan King of Pro-Wrestling 0
66 Prince Devitt 3 November 11, 2012 419 Osaka, Japan Power Struggle 4
67 Kota Ibushi 3 January 4, 2014 181 Tokyo, Japan Wrestle Kingdom 8 in Tokyo Dome 4
68 Kushida 1 July 4, 2014 7+ Tokyo, Japan Kizuna Road 2014 0

List of combined reigns[edit]

Jushin Liger, a record eleven-time IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion.

As of July 11, 2014

Symbol Meaning
Indicates the current champion(s)
Rank Wrestler No. of reigns Combined
defenses
Combined
days
1 Jushin Liger 11 31 2,245
2 Prince Devitt 3 15 1,010
3 Heat/Minoru/Minoru Tanaka 4 20 998
4 Koji Kanemoto 5 14 954
5 Tiger Mask IV 6 12 858
6 Shiro Koshinaka 3 9 702
7 Kota Ibushi 3 8 337
8 Norio Honaga 3 9 283
9 Low Ki 3 2 226
10 Hiroshi Hase 2 3 195
11 Wataru Inoue 1 2 191
12 El Samurai 2 3 184
13 Shinjiro Otani 1 5 181
14 Kendo Kashin 2 3 175
15 Naoki Sano 1 2 174
16 Naomichi Marufuji 1 5 166
17 The Great Sasuke 1 5 165
18 Ryusuke Taguchi 1 4 155
19 Black Tiger IV 1 1 134
20 Kuniaki Kobayashi 1 1 129
21 Último Dragón 2 8 128
22 Nobuhiko Takada 1 6 123
23 Tatsuhito Takaiwa 1 1 101
24 Akira Nogami 1 1 88
25 Místico 1 2 85
26 Masayuki Naruse 1 1 80
27 Pegasus Kid 1 0 74
28 Jado 1 1 62
29 Sabu 1 1 42
30 Owen Hart 1 1 28
31 Juventud Guerrera 1 0 7
32 Kushida 1 0 7+

References[edit]

General
Specific
  1. ^ "No Limit、またしてもIWGP Jr.タッグ奪還ならず!/4月19日TNA「Lock Down」試合結果(1)". NJPW.co.jp (in Japanese). New Japan Pro Wrestling. 2009-04-20. Archived from the original on 2009-04-21. Retrieved 2009-12-08. "「Lock Down」は全試合が「シックスサイドスチール」と呼ばれる金網マッチで行われる大会。なれない試合形式に加えて3WAYタッグ。さらに、もう一組の挑戦者チームであるLAXのホミサイドはともかく、ヘルナンデスはどう見ても新日本のJr.規定である100Kgを超えている。数々のハンディを抱えての再挑戦となった。" 
  2. ^ Clevett, Jason (2004-11-04). "The legend of Jushin "Thunder" Liger". Slam! Sports: Wrestling. Canadian Online Explorer. Retrieved 2010-03-08. 
  3. ^ "PWI: Wrestling History". Pro Wrestling Illustrated. PWI-Online.com. Retrieved 2010-03-21. 
  4. ^ Milner, John (2005-03-22). "Chris Benoit". Slam! Sports: Wrestling. Canadian Online Explorer. Retrieved 2010-03-08. 
  5. ^ Molinaro, John F. (1999-10-28). "Chris Benoit". Slam! Sports: Wrestling. Canadian Online Explorer. Retrieved 2010-03-08. 
  6. ^ Power Slam Staff (August 2003). "We are the Champions (as of July 8)". Power Slam Magazine (Lancaster, Lancashire, England: SW Publishing LTD). p. 15. 109. 
  7. ^ Power Slam Magazine Staff (March 2005). "We are the champions (as of February 11)". Power Slam Magazine (Lancaster, Lancashire, England: SW Publishing LTD). p. 15. 116. 
  8. ^ Martin, Andrew (2009-01-04). "1/4 NJPW Wrestle Kingdom III results: Tokyo, Japan". Wrestleview. Retrieved 2010-03-26. 
  9. ^ Golden, Hunter (2009-01-07). "Rising Sun Soliloquy Newsletter #7: Colossal Tokyo Dome Edition!". Wrestleview. Retrieved 2010-03-26. 
  10. ^ Golden, Hunter (2009-08-20). "Rising Sun Soliloquy Newsletter #36". Wrestleview. Archived from the original on 2009-08-24. Retrieved 2010-03-26. 
  11. ^ "Resultados NJPW Destruction – Tiger Mask vence a Místico – Team 3D y Nakamura retienen". SuperLuchas (in Spanish). 2009-11-08. Retrieved 2010-03-26. 
  12. ^ "January 4 New Japan Tokyo Dome report – legends, promotional wars". Wrestling Observer. 2010-01-04. Retrieved 2010-03-05. 
  13. ^ "9.19神戸大会全カード決定! 飯伏が負傷欠場、デヴィvsKUSHIDAで"新王者"決定戦!金本vs魔界28号は星野勘太郎メモリアルマッチ!!". New Japan Pro Wrestling (in Japanese). 2011-09-12. Retrieved 2011-09-12. 

External links[edit]