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The WWE Intercontinental Championship is a 2nd tier championship in WWE. Although generally contested in the midcard at WWE shows, the title was defended in the main events of WrestleMania VI, SummerSlam 1992, the third and eighth In Your House events, and Backlash 2001. In recent years, however, its prestige is seen to have incurred a serious decline.

The term "intercontinental" refers to spanning multiple continents, in this case originally two, North and South America. In 1985, the belt design changed, the centerplate now centered on the Atlantic Ocean, in a map including western Africa and Europe.

WWE IC Title History.jpg

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 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 WWE 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 WWE 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.[22] 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.

On August 18th, 2014, the Intercontinental Championship belt design (along with all of the other championships in WWE) was updated with the new logo in place of the long-standing scratch logo.

Championship Lineage

1979 to 2002

Vacated — April 1, 1990

Vacated — September 27, 1993

Vacated — April 26, 1995

Vacated — April 1, 1996

Vacated — August 12, 1996

Vacated — September 8, 1997

Vacated — October 9, 1998

Unified with the WCW United States Championship

Unified with Triple H's World Heavyweight Championship and deactivated.

2003 to Present

Raw Co-General Manager Stone Cold Steve Austin reactivated the title.

Vacated — September 6, 2004

Vacated — June 30, 2014

VACATED - May 11 2015

VACATED - May 12 2020

See Also