Thursday, April 30, 2009

Get the title situation under control!

I've been reading a lot of rumors that WWE is going to become a lot more strict about the roster split and rein in all the inter-brand activity that's been going on the last few months. If that's true, it's great news because it'll give more guys a chance to shine, but I hope along with it, they do something about the constant title changes. I'm not the kind of guy to harp on things like "title prestige," but since late 2008, it's gotten a bit ridiculous.

First, let's take a look at the WWE Championship. Let's think back to September of 2006, when John Cena beat Edge in a TLC match at Unforgiven, Cena held that title until October of 2007 when he went down with his pectoral injury. Orton got the belt at No Mercy 07 and held it for six months until dropping it to Triple H at Backlash 08; HHH held it for seven months. So ignoring the goofy trade-offs at No Mercy 07, there were really only three major WWE Title reigns between September of 2006 and November of 2008. Once Edge returned at Survivor Series, the WWE changed hands at that event, then in December at Armageddon, then in January at the Royal Rumble, then in February at No Way Out, then last Sunday at Backlash. That's five reigns in five months compared to three reigns in over two years... that's absurd.

The World Heavyweight Championship is not immune to this either. Since Chris Jericho won the title in September, the title has gone to Batista at Cyber Sunday, back to Jericho a week later, to Cena at Survivor Series, to Edge at No Way Out, to John Cena at WrestleMania to Edge at Backlash. Seven reigns in seven months.

It seems the one major title that's handled well is the ECW Championship. I look at the ECW brand in two stages, the original revival of the brand where WWE didn't exactly know what to do with it and when they seemed to find their footing with it in the Summer of 2007. Since John Morrison won the ECW Title, the shortest reign has been 68 days; CM Punk, Matt Hardy and Jack Swagger all had reigns over 100 days.

When you bounce titles around like WWE's been doing the last few months, it makes the switches lack impact. Jeff Hardy's first title reign is going to be a footnote in history because it was sandwiched between two other hotshotted reigns that people aren't going to remember in five years. I'm not saying we need to go back to the days of Bruno Sammartino holding the belt for eight years, but just keep title changes infrequent enough to make them actually mean something.

1 comment:

  1. I'm ok with belts changing hands through rematch, but other than that, I think you are right on.