Jay Dee's Hot List: Wrestling's 10 Worst Champions and Title Changes
Have you ever watched a title match and wonder: "What the hell were these bookers thinking?" Or have you ever seen a guy hold a belt and wonder who exactly he/she screwed to get that push? Well so have I and I have a Top 10 List to prove it!
This is my Hotlist of the Top 10 Worst Champions and Title Changes.
Honorable Mention: The Miz (WWE Championship)
Can you say jumping the gun?
I don't know if it's because Vince thinks so highly of Miz or if it was a gut reaction to the Jeff Hardy heel turn, but this was definitely a step down for the WWE. Sure, Miz has media connections so, on paper, giving him the title would be beneficial. But remember, WCW thought the same thing about David Arquette and we saw how well that story ended.
I'm keeping this in honorable mention because Miz could surprise all of us and be a decent champion, but I'm not going to hold my breath on it.
10: Michelle McCool/Layla (Women's/Divas Championship)
Perhaps the worse women's wrestler I've seen since Jackie Gayda, and yet they allowed her to hold the Women's and Divas Championship.
This goes to show how important women's wrestling is to the WWE. When McCool defeated Melina to win the title, you heard a collective groan amongst the WWE Universe.
Then having her and Layla go over Mickie James a couple months later just fueled the hatred towards the tandem (in an X-Pac type of way). Thank God Vince saw the error of his ways and took the belt off of them, giving it to Natalya Neidhart.
9: Santino Marella (Intercontinental Championship)
I love Santino. As a comedic wrestler, this guy is absolute gold and he's over with the audience, but giving him the Intercontinental Title didn't really help anybody.
There were many other deserving Champions in the company at the time, and the way he won it the first time around was about as believable as Kaitlynn having real breasts! Then that stupid Honk-O-Meter, the emergence of Glamorella, and that lackluster feud with Cena, just to bring in the one-time appearance of Trish Stratus didn't help matters either.
He is now 1/2 of the Undisputed Tag Team Champions with Vladimir Kozlov and this seems to be made into a legitimate team. But we know the WWE. It's only a matter of time before this team falls by the wayside.
8: Jack Swagger (World Heavyweight Championship)
"The All-American American" couldn't save himself from a horrible title reign.
After winning the Money In The Bank match at Wrestlemania 26, things were looking up for this strapping young buck. Flash forward to a few days later and he cashes in on Jericho, giving him the World Championship. He retained in a triple threat match against Jericho and Edge, then defeated Orton. However it was his lackluster feud with Big Show that killed all momentum and not even a two months later, he would drop the title to Rey Mysterio.
He hasn't even sniffed the World Title since, falling back to the Intercontinental Title ranks.
7: Jeff Jarrett (WCW & NWA World Heavyweight Championships)
Between WCW and TNA, Jeff Jarrett constantly found ways to get to the top. The only problem was that nobody wanted to see Jeff as the Champ. Not the fans, not the columnists, not even the other guys in the back! But that didn't stop him!
When he first burst onto the scene in WCW, he was immediately put into the main title hunt because of his relationship with Vince Russo and Jeremy Borash. Through that, he was able to pull off four WCW Championship reigns before the company folded.
After doing overseas tours and a stint with the now defunct WWA (where he was a two time Champion, See a pattern here?), he founded TNA. He would go on to win the then NWA World Heavyweight Championship six times in a four year span before TNA ended their deal with NWA.
The only problem is with all the companies in which he was champion, these reigns didn't translate into ratings or ticket sales.
Jeff Jarrett, though I respect his talent, couldn't draw anything if you gave him an easel and finger paints. He has since fallen back from the World Title picture, but only after getting his 52 reigns in first
6: Hornswoggle (Cruiserweight Championship)
Do I really need to explain this one?
It's worse enough you have a midget who can't speak rummaging around the WWE like a leprechaun on crack, but to give him the Cruiserweight Championship of the World?
Why WWE Why!?!
Soon they realized this was a huge mistake and killed off the title completely.
5: AJ Styles (TNA World Championship)
This wasn't a bad title reign because of the person holding the title, but the story behind it.
AJ Sytles is without a shadow of a doubt THE face of TNA. He's won every title ever created by that company and was finally given the reigns to be the guy to lead them. Only to have his reign cut short by RVD, to have RVD's reign ultimately vacated because of Abyss, to give the title to Jeff Hardy, who AJ is now in a group with (did you follow all of that?).
Ahh Vince Russo, you never cease to amaze me.
4: Kane (WWE Championship)
Remember when Kane was WWE Champion in 1996? Yeah, neither do we, but he was.
He faced "Stone Cold" Steve Austin in a First Blood Match and won thanks to his "brother" The Undertaker. Only to drop the title, the very next night, back to Austin.
He's now been given a second chance of sorts as he is the reigning World Heavyweight Champion on Smackdown (his first major title reign since that infamous win. I'm not counting the "WWE" ECW Championship as a major title), but he took a huge blow to his character after this title fiasco.
3: Rey Mysterio (World Heavyweight Championship)
It was a feel good story with a horrendous ending.
Rey Mysterio is without a doubt the WWE's biggest underdog and nobody expected him to win the Royal Rumble, especially entering in at #2. He proved his doubters wrong by eliminating Triple H and Randy Orton to become the #1 Contender to the World Title. He would dedicate his win to Eddie Guerrero and stated he would win the big one for Eddie.
Now here's where it gets interesting. Rey loses a match to Orton at No Way Out taking him out of the WrestleMania main event, only to have Teddy Long place him back into the match (which defeated the whole purpose of the match at NWO). Rey Mysterio goes on to win at Wrestlemania over Angle and Orton, to a very mixed reaction.
The next few months would be the demise of Mysterio as Champion as he became fodder to everyone put in front of him while champion. He would go on to lose "non-title" matches to The Great Khali, Mark Henry, The Big Show, Kane, and Rob Van Dam before ultimately dropping the title to King Booker at the Great American Bash.
2: David Arquette (WCW World Heavyweight Championship)
Speaking of David Arquette...
Man, honestly what the hell was WCW thinking when they decided that this was a good idea? Let's take a guy who has never wrestled before, outside of that ridiculous movie that WCW helped pay for and it flopped, put him in the ring.. oh and give him our most prestigious championship. That'll get us ratings, right?
The company would fold a few months later.
1: Hollywood Hogan (WCW World Heavyweight Championship/The Fingerpoke Of Doom)
The single worst event in the history of wrestling. Yes, even worse than Arquette.
It was billed as a huge main event, as well as it should've been, for WCW. Hollywood Hogan, the leader of nWo Hollywood, versus Kevin Nash, the WCW Champion and leader of the nWo Wolfpac.
The fans were on the edge of their seat for this one, finally seeing the nWo implode before their very eyes. Instead, we saw Nash take a dive and Hogan become Champion once again.
I must ask, who in their right mind thought this was a grand idea? They had a huge main event at their disposal with two of the biggest names in wrestling at the time and they shat all over it for a stale storyline that no one cared much about anymore. Thus helped lead to the demise of WCW.
The Wrap Up
So there you have it. My Top 10 List of Worst Champions/Title Changes. I know for a fact there are others that could've made it as there are plenty of horrible champions and even worse title changes. So which are your favorites?