ROH World Championship
|ROH World Championship|
The current ROH World Championship belt
|Current champion(s)||Jay Lethal|
|Date won||June 19, 2015|
|Date established||July 27, 2002|
|Promotion||Ring of Honor|
The ROH World Championship is a professional wrestling world championship in Ring of Honor. The championship has also been through other companies in cooperation with ROH through the Global Professional Wrestling Alliance (GPWA), the governing body of many independent wrestling promotions throughout the United States and Japan.
Samoa Joe had the longest title reign to date when he held the belt for 21 months and four days. During his reign, ROH held a cross-promotional show with Frontier Wrestling Alliance in the United Kingdom on May 17, 2003 called Frontiers of Honor. At that show, Joe turned the title into the ROH World Championship when he defended it against The Zebra Kid. Since then the title has been defended in Germany, Canada, Switzerland, Austria, Mexico, Japan, Ireland, Italy, and Spain.
On August 12, 2006, the ROH Pure Championship was unified with the ROH World Heavyweight Championship after ROH Pure Champion Nigel McGuinness lost to ROH World Champion Bryan Danielson in Liverpool, England in a title unification match. The match was contested under pure wrestling rules, with the stipulation that both championships could be lost by disqualification or count out.
In 2010 the title belt, along with the ROH World Tag Team Championships, was redesigned. The new belt has an eagle with its wings spread over a picture of the world with an ROH logo on the top. This design also includes various flags on different countries. In December 2012, a new design (as featured above) was introduced at the Final Battle iPPV.
On July 3, 2013, the ROH World Heavyweight Championship was declared vacant for the first time since its inception, when ROH Match Maker Nigel McGuinness stripped then-champion Jay Briscoe of the title after he was sidelined with a storyline injury and wouldn't be able to compete for the foreseeable future.
The inaugural champion was Low Ki, who defeated Christopher Daniels, Spanky, and Doug Williams in a Four Way 60-minute Iron Man match on July 27, 2002 to become champion. Samoa Joe has the longest reign as champion with his only reign, from March 22, 2003 to December 26, 2004, lasting 645 days and gave the title "World" status when he defended it in the UK. James Gibson currently has the shortest reign at 36 days. Austin Aries and Jay Briscoe both hold the record for the most reigns with two individually.
Jay Lethal is the current champion in his first reign. He defeated Jay Briscoe in a Winner Take All match at Best in the World 2015 in New York City, where Lethal's TV Championship was also on the line. Overall, there have been 22 ROH World Championship reigns and 20 total champions. The title has been vacated only once.
- Online World of Wrestling
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- "Nigel McGuinness Makes a Huge Announcement!". ROHwrestling.com. 2013-07-03. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
- Caldwell, James (2009-04-04). "ROH News: Story from Friday night's ROH Title match in Houston". PW Torch. Retrieved 2009-04-04.
- Meltzer, Dave (2009-04-04). "New world champion is....". The Wrestling Observer. Retrieved 2009-04-04.