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The World Championship Wrestling (WCW) World Heavyweight Championship was a professional wrestling world heavyweight championship in World Championship Wrestling (WCW) and the World Wrestling Federation (WWF). It existed within WCW between 1991 and 2001. Following the acquisition of WCW by World Wrestling Federation Entertainment, Inc. in March 2001, it became one of two world titles in the WWF, with its name being immediately abbreviated to the WCW Championship and finally, the World Championship in November. It continued to complement theWWF Championship until the following month, when both titles were unified to created the Undisputed WWF Championship. On September 2, 2002, its physical belt design, known historically as the Big Gold Belt, was restored by World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE—formerly WWF) to represent the World Heavyweight Championship, with no company name prefixed.

In March 2001, the World Wrestling Federation purchased the assets of World Championship Wrestling. Soon after, "The Invasion" took place and four of WCW's championships were defended on WWF programming including the WCW World Heavyweight Championship, which became known as the "WCW Championship". The WWF carried over the title, along with the WCW United States Heavyweight Championship, WCW Cruiserweight Championship, and the WCW World Tag Team Championship.

After the "Invasion" concluded at WWE Survivor Series 2001, the title was rebranded as the "World Championship". The title was then unified with the WWF Championship at WWE Vengeance 2001 where Chris Jericho defeated The Rock and Stone Cold Steve Austin to win the unbranded World Championship and the WWF Championship respectively. As a result, Chris Jericho was recognized as the last World Champion, and he became the first Undisputed WWF Champion.

Championship Lineage


Vacated — July 1, 1991- Flair left for the World Wrestling Federation

Vacated — April 17, 1994.

Vacated — November 6, 1995 - WCW Monday Nitro

Vacated — January 8, 1998

Vacated — October 25, 1999

Vacated — December 20, 1999

Vacated — January 16, 2000

Vacated — January 17, 2000

Vacated — January 25, 2000

Vacated — April 10, 2000 - All WCW titles were declared vacant by Vince Russo and Eric Bischoff after WCW was rebooted.

Vacated — May 22, 2000

Vacated — October 2, 2000


Unified — December 9, 2001 - WWE Vengeance 2001 - Unified with the WWF Championship when Jericho defeated Stone Cold Steve Austin to create the "Undisputed WWF Championship"

See Also

WWE World Heavyweight Championship, WWE Championships, WCW Championships