WWE Raw Tag Team Championship
|WWE Raw Tag Team Championship|
The current Raw Tag Team Championship belt.
|Date established||October 20, 2002|
|Current champion(s)||The New Day
(Big E, Kofi Kingston, and Xavier Woods)
|Date won||August 23, 2015|
The WWE Raw Tag Team Championship is a professional wrestling world tag team championship created and promoted by the American professional wrestling promotion WWE on the Raw brand. The current champions are The New Day, who are in their second reign and are the longest reigning champions.
Originally established as the WWE Tag Team Championship on October 20, 2002, it was introduced for the SmackDown brand as a second title for tag teams in the promotion to complement WWE's original World Tag Team Championship, which became exclusive to Raw. The team of Kurt Angle and Chris Benoit were the inaugural champions. Both titles were unified in 2009 and were collectively referred to as the "Unified WWE Tag Team Championship" while officially remaining independently active until the World Tag Team Championship was formally decommissioned in 2010. As a result of the 2016 draft, the championship became exclusive to Raw with a subsequent rename, and SmackDown created the WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship as a counterpart title.
After the company's initial brand extension in the spring of 2002, the original World Tag Team Championship was reassigned that following summer to appear and be defended exclusively on the Raw brand, leaving the SmackDown brand without a tag team title. As a result, SmackDown General Manager Stephanie McMahon introduced the WWE Tag Team Championship and commissioned it to be the tag team title for the SmackDown brand. She stated that the inaugural champions would be determined from an eight-team tournament. On October 20, 2002, the team of Kurt Angle and Chris Benoit defeated Rey Mysterio and Edge at No Mercy in the tournament final to become the inaugural WWE Tag Team Champions.
On October 17, 2007, SmackDown and ECW announced a talent sharing agreement that enabled talent from either brand's roster to compete on both brands. As a result, the title became eligible to be contended and defended on both brands. In late 2008 through early 2009, then WWE Tag Team Champions The Colóns (Carlito and Primo) engaged in rivalry with then World Tag Team Champions John Morrison and The Miz, which resulted in the announcement on the March 17 episode of ECW that at WrestleMania XXV, both teams would defend their titles against each other and the winning team would hold both titles. The Colons defeated Morrison and Miz, and thus unified the titles into what became known as the Unified WWE Tag Team Championship, the umbrella term for what officially remained two active championships that were now collectively defended. The championships would be defended as the Unified WWE Tag Team Championship on any brand until August 2010. That month, then Raw General Manager Bret Hart announced that the World Tag Team Championship would be decommissioned and combined into the WWE Tag Team Championship, which received a new, single set of championship belts.
Following the reintroduction of the brand extension in July 2016, champions The New Day were drafted to the Raw brand, making the championship exclusive to Raw. In response, SmackDown created the SmackDown Tag Team Championship on August 23, 2016. The WWE Tag Team Championship was subsequently renamed to reflect its exclusivity to Raw.
Following the events of the WWE brand extension, an annual WWE draft was established, in which select members of the WWE roster are reassigned to a different brand. After the WWE Tag Team Championship was unified with the World Tag Team Championship as the Unified WWE Tag Team Championship, the champions could appear and defend the titles on any WWE brand. The titles were combined as the WWE Tag Team Championship in August 2010 with a single set of belts, and continued to be defended on any brand. The following is a list of dates indicating the transitions of the Raw Tag Team Championship between the Raw, SmackDown, and ECW brands. The brand extension was discontinued on August 29, 2011, but it was revived on July 19, 2016.
|Championship moved to the Raw brand.|
|Championship moved to the SmackDown brand.|
|Championship moved to the ECW brand.|
|Date of transition||Notes|
|October 20, 2002||Championship established for SmackDown.|
|November 13, 2007||John Morrison and The Miz were a part of the ECW brand, and as a result, the titles moved to the ECW brand. However, as part of the talent exchange between SmackDown and ECW, teams of either brand could challenge for the titles.|
|July 20, 2008||The titles return to SmackDown following Curt Hawkins and Zack Ryder's title win.
The championship remained exclusive to SmackDown until the unification with the World Tag Team Championship in April 2009.
|August 29, 2011||End of first brand extension.|
|July 19, 2016||Reintroduction of brand extension.
WWE Tag Team Champions The New Day were drafted to Raw in the 2016 WWE draft.
After the introduction of the SmackDown Tag Team Championship, the title was renamed to Raw Tag Team Championship.
The inaugural champions were Kurt Angle and Chris Benoit. John Cena and The Miz's 10-minute reign is the shortest in the title's history, while The New Day (Big E, Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods) are the longest reigning champions at 399 days as of 25 September 2016.
The current champions are The New Day who are in their second reign as a team. Individually, this is the second reign each for Big E and Woods, and the record tying fourth for Kingston. Big E and Kingston won the titles on August 23, 2015 in Brooklyn, New York City, New York at SummerSlam in a fatal four-way tag team match over Los Matadores (Diego and Fernando), The Lucha Dragons (Kalisto and Sin Cara), and previous champions The Prime Time Players (Darren Young and Titus O'Neil). Woods is also recognized as champion along with Big E and Kingston under the Freebird Rule.
- List of current WWE tag teams and stables
- List of current champions in WWE
- WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship
- NXT Tag Team Championship
- World Tag Team Championship (WWE)
- Freebird Rule
- Tag team
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