WWE Intercontinental Championship
|WWE Intercontinental Championship|
The current Intercontinental Championship belt, being raised in the air by two-time champion Cody Rhodes
|Current champion(s)||Big E Langston|
|Date won||November 18, 2013|
|Promotion||World Wrestling Entertainment|
|Date established||September 1, 1979|
|Other name(s)||*WWF Intercontinental Heavyweight Championship
*WWF Intercontinental Championship
The WWE Intercontinental Championship is a professional wrestling championship in World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE). It is the original secondary title of the promotion. Although generally contested on the undercard at WWE shows, matches for the title have, on occasion, headlined pay-per-view events.
WWF North American Heavyweight Champion Pat Patterson became the inaugural champion on September 1, 1979. It was said he had unified his title with a South American Heavyweight Championship, in a tournament in Rio de Janeiro, though this tournament was never actually held.
On October 17, 1999, Chyna became the first and only woman to hold the Intercontinental Championship by defeating Jeff Jarrett at No Mercy. Following the World Wrestling Federation's purchase of World Championship Wrestling in March 2001, the title was unified with the WCW United States Championship at Survivor Series 2001, causing the United States Championship to become inactive. The United States Champion, Edge, defeated the Intercontinental Champion, Test.
Following the WWF/WWE name change in 2002, the championship was further unified with the European Championship in a ladder match on July 22, and the Hardcore Championship on August 26. The Intercontinental Champion, Rob Van Dam, defeated the European Champion, Jeff Hardy, and the Hardcore Champion, Tommy Dreamer respectively. As a result, Rob Van Dam was named the last European and Hardcore Champion. Then at No Mercy 2002, it was unified with the World Heavyweight Championship. The World Heavyweight Champion, Triple H, defeated the Intercontinental Champion, Kane, causing the Intercontinental Championship to become inactive. However, in May 2003, the title was reactivated by Raw co-General Manager, Stone Cold Steve Austin, and was recommissioned to be a secondary championship to the Raw brand. Shortly after, the WCW United States Championship was reactivated as the WWE United States Championship by the SmackDown brand, making the title its counterpart. During the 2009 WWE Draft on April 13, 2009, reigning champion Rey Mysterio was drafted to SmackDown, making the Intercontinental Championship exclusive to that brand. On October 2, 2011, at Hell in a Cell, Cody Rhodes introduced a modified version of the classic belt design with the white strap, with an added modern WWE "scratch logo" and other embellishments. Since August 29, 2011, when all WWE programming became "Supershows" featuring wrestlers from the full roster, the title has been defended on both Raw and SmackDown.
The inaugural champion was Pat Patterson, after allegedly unifying his North American Championship with a "South American Heavyweight Championship" in a September 1979 tournament in Rio de Janeiro that never actually happened.
There have been 70 different champions. Chris Jericho holds the most reigns with nine. The Honky Tonk Man was the longest reigning champion at 454 days from June 2, 1987 until August 29, 1988, and Dean Douglas had the shortest reign at approximately 11 minutes. Chyna is the only woman to win the title. The youngest champion was Jeff Hardy, who won the championship at 23 years old. The oldest champion was Ric Flair, who won the championship at Unforgiven 2005 at the age of 56.
- WWE WrestleMania I (DVD). WWE. 1985-03-31.
- Dean Douglas' Reign
- See: WrestleMania VI, SummerSlam (1992), In Your House 3 and In Your House 8: Beware of Dog.
- "Pat Patterson's first reign".
- Lilsboy (May 2005). "The truth about Chyna". The Sun. Retrieved 2007-04-12.
- Laurer, Joanie. If They Only Knew, 299.
- "WWE Entertainment, Inc. Acquires WCW from Turner Broadcasting". WWE Corporate. 2001-03-23. Retrieved 2007-12-07.
- "Survivor Series 2001 results". WWE. Retrieved 2007-12-07.
- "WWE Raw - June 22, 2002 results". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved 2007-12-07.
- "WWE Raw - August 26, 2002 results". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved 2007-12-07.
- "Rob Van Dam's first reign". World Wrestling Entertainment. Archived from the original on 2008-03-11. Retrieved 2007-08-02.
- "WWE European Championship history". WWE. Retrieved 2007-12-07.
- "WWE Hardcore Championship history". WWE.com. Retrieved 2007-12-07.
- "No Mercy 2002 results". WWE. Retrieved 2007-12-07.
- Plummer, Dale (2009-04-14). "RAW: Drafting a fresh start for the WWE". Slam! Sports. Canadian Online Explorer. Retrieved 2009-04-15.
- Buridck, Michael (2011-10-02). "WWE "Intercontinental Champion Cody Rhodes def. John Morrison"". Retrieved 2011-10-04.
- Official WWE Intercontinental Title History
- Wrestling-Titles.com: Intercontinental Championship
- WWE Intercontinental Title Belts: A Guide to the Gold