NWA International Heavyweight Championship

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NWA International Heavyweight Championship
Date established November, 1957
Date retired April 18, 1988
Promotion Japan Wrestling Association, All Japan Pro Wrestling, NWA Hollywood Wrestling & Championship Wrestling from Florida
This was a regional NWA championship based in Japan. For the WCW International World championship, see WCW International World Heavyweight Championship.

The NWA International Heavyweight Championship was a singles title recognized by the National Wrestling Alliance through its partnership with the Japan Pro Wrestling Alliance, and later by All Japan Pro Wrestling. It is one of the three titles that were unified into the Triple Crown Heavyweight Championship in 1989. Prior to the creation of the Triple Crown, All Japan considered the NWA International title to be its top singles championship.

Under Rikidōzan the belt had a design similar to Lou Thesz's original NWA World Heavyweight Championship belt during the 1950s, but after Rikidōzan's death, the belt given to Giant Baba had the design seen today on the belt part of the Triple Crown. The original design was later used on the PWF Heavyweight Championship, the UWFI belt (which was the original Lou Thesz belt), and a belt later given to Kazushi Sakuraba for show.[1]

Title history[edit]

#: Name(s): Reigns: Date: Location: Notes:
1 Lou Thesz 1 November 1, 1957 n/a Thesz was awarded the championship by the NWA. Houston NWA promoter Morris Sigel claimed that Thesz has won the title by defeating Antonino Rocca in 1949.
2 Rikidōzan 1 August 27, 1958 Los Angeles, California, United States
Vacated on December 15, 1963 following Rikidōzan's death from stab wounds suffered one week earlier in Tokyo, Japan.
3 Giant Baba 1 November 24, 1965 Osaka, Japan Defeated Dick the Bruiser for the vacant title.
4 Bobo Brazil 1 June 25, 1968 Nagoya, Japan
5 Giant Baba 2 June 27, 1968 Tokyo, Japan
6 Gene Kiniski 1 December 3, 1970 Osaka, Japan
7 Giant Baba 3 December 19, 1970 Los Angeles, California, United States
Vacated on September 2, 1972 when Baba left the Japan Wrestling Association to start All Japan Pro Wrestling.
8 Bobo Brazil 2 December 1, 1972 Yokohama, Japan Defeated Kintaro Ohki for the vacant title.
9 Kintaro Ohki 1 December 4, 1972 Hiroshima, Japan
After the JWA closed in 1973, Ohki took the belt to South Korea from where he defended it. He vacated the title on April 13, 1981 under orders from the NWA.
10 Dory Funk, Jr. 1 April 30, 1981 Matsudo, Japan Won tournament for the vacant title when Bruiser Brody was injured and unable to wrestle in the finals. Defeated Terry Funk for his first title defense instead.
11 Bruce Reed 1 1981 Florida, United States Title reign not recognized in Japan.
12 Dory Funk, Jr. 2 1981 Florida, United States
13 Bruiser Brody 1 October 9, 1981 Tokyo, Japan
14 Dory Funk, Jr. 3 November 1, 1981 Tokyo, Japan
15 Bruiser Brody 2 April 21, 1982 Osaka, Japan
16 Jumbo Tsuruta 1 April 30, 1983 Tokyo, Japan
17 Stan Hansen 1 July 31, 1986 Tokyo, Japan
18 Jumbo Tsuruta 2 October 21, 1986 Tokyo, Japan
19 Bruiser Brody 3 March 27, 1988 Tokyo, Japan
20 Jumbo Tsuruta 3 April 18, 1988 Sendai, Japan
Unified with PWF Heavyweight Championship and NWA United National Championship to create the Triple Crown Heavyweight Championship.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Royal Duncan & Gary Will (2006). Wrestling Title Histories (4th ed.). Archeus Communications. ISBN 0-9698161-5-4. 

External links[edit]