Sunday, July 8, 2012

The United States Championship

The United States Championship is one of the most historic titles in WWE, tracing its roots to NWA’s regional Mid-Atlantic United States Championship. On January 1, 1975, Jim Crockett introduced the NWA United States Championship, and the inaugural match saw Harley Race defeat Johnny Weaver to become the title’s first holder. The championship remained affiliated with NWA and Jim Crockett Promotions’ NWA/WCW until Ted Turner acquired Crockett Promotions and launched WCW on November 21, 1988. The title was defended in WCW until WWE acquired its longtime rival in March 2001.

Today, the United States Championship remains one of the most coveted prizes in all of WWE – and the focal point for many memorable matches featuring Superstars, Legends and WWE Hall of Famers.  

Such legends include Harley Race, Ric Flair, Ricky Steamboat, Stone Cold Steve Austin, Sting Diamond Dallas Page, and Bret Hart... all before WWE took over the title. But in my opinion the greatest United States Champion of all time, in any promotion was Goldberg. I think the greatest match and moment in the history of the championship was the title vs title match between United States Champion Goldberg and WCW/World Champion Hulk Hogan. It was the WCW equivalent of the Wrestlemania 6 match between Intercontinental Champion The Ultimate Warrior and the WWF/WWE Champion Hulk Hogan. It was the only moment in history where a United States Champion was in the main event against someone the likes of Hulk Hogan. That match should have been the main event of the biggest WCW PPV of all time, presumably Starrcade. Instead, they wasted it on an episode of Nitro and it was the last time WCW was ever ahead in the ratings in the Monday Night War. Goldberg should have taken over the world of professional wrestling and lead WCW to victory in the Monday Night War, but instead Vince won and bought WCW and the title and its never been the same since. Sadly, the greatest moment in the titles history in WWE was when Zack Ryder defeated Dolph Ziggler. Unfortunately, Ryder did not hold the title for long and it is currently around the waist of Santino Marrella. I think its safe to say the title is currently a joke. 

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