NWA World Middleweight Championship
The NWA World Middleweight Championship was a professional wrestling championship in the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA) between 1939 and 2010. For most of its existence, it was defended in the Mexican lucha libre promotion Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre (CMLL), who called it the Campeonato Mundial Peso Medio de NWA. As it is a professional wrestling championship, its holders were determined by promoters or promotions, not by athletic competition. The official middleweight limits in lucha libre are 82 kg (181 lb) to 87 kg (192 lb), but this rule is broken when convenient.[Note 3]
|NWA World Middleweight Championship|
The championship belt
|Promotion||Empresa Mexicana de Lucha Libre|
Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre
|Date retired||August 12, 2010|
World Middleweight Championship (1939–1952)[G]
The championship was created as the "World Middleweight Championship" in early 1939, by Salvador Lutteroth, owner of Empresa Mexicana de Lucha Libre (EMLL).[G] He awarded it to Gus Kallio, a five-time National Wrestling Association World Middleweight Champion, nicknamed "The King of the Middleweights" in the United States.[G] When Octavio Gaona defeated Kallio on March 29, 1939, he won both middleweight championships. The National Wrestling Association title was retired in 1940, to give prominence to Lutteroth's creation. When EMLL joined the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA) in 1952, the belt was prefixed with "NWA".
In the late 1980s, EMLL withdrew from the NWA and in the early 1990s changed its name to Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre (CMLL). CMLL retained ownership of three NWA-branded championships which originated in the promotion.[G] The other two were the NWA World Welterweight Championship and the NWA World Light Heavyweight Championship. All continued to be billed as "Campeonatos de NWA". In 1994, Último Dragón bought the NWA World Middleweight Championship and its booking rights from CMLL.[G] He chose to make himself first champion, and won it in a match with Corazón de León at a Wrestle and Romance (WAR) show on November 8, 1994, in Korakuen Hall. At that point he began promoting the title exclusively in Japan, holding it himself until vacating it in 1998. During his run with the championship Último Dragón also won the J-Crown championships, eight unified lightweight championships, but the NWA World Middleweight Championship was never integrated into the J-Crown. In 2003, after ending The Great Sasuke's long reign, Dragón signed with World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) and returned the championship to CMLL who he worked with off and on until that point. Averno defeated Zumbido to win the vacant title in its first CMLL match since 1994.
In March 2010, Blue Demon Jr., the president of NWA Mexico the local representative of the National Wrestling Alliance, demanded that CMLL (a non-member of NWA Mexico) cease promoting the NWA-branded championships, declaring that all three championships had been vacated as far as the NWA was concerned. NWA Mexico had already tried to reclaim CMLL's three NWA-branded titles on a previous occasion. CMLL ignored both requests; the NWA Welterweight Champion, Mephisto, commented instead that "the titles belong to CMLL", thus the NWA could not vacate them. On August 12, 2010, CMLL unveiled the new NWA World Historic Middleweight Championship to replace the original championship, which it conceded to NWA Mexico.
Since 1939 45 wrestlers have shared 84 NWA Middleweight Championship reigns. René Guajardo held the championship a record six times. Tarzán López' four reigns totalled 2,948 days, the longest of any champion. The Great Sasuke had the longest single reign, at 1,548 days. Emilio Charles, Jr. had the shortest reign at 11 days.
|No.||Overall reign number|
|Reign||Reign number for the specific champion|
|Days||Number of days held|
|(NLT)||Championship change took place "no later than" the date listed|
|†||Championship change is unrecognized by the promotion|
|No.||Champion||Championship change||Reign statistics||Notes||Ref.|
|1||Gus Kallio||N/A||Live event||N/A||1||[Note 4]||Gus Kallio was awarded the championship in late 1938 or early 1939 due to the fact that he already held the World Middleweight Championship in the United States.||[G]|
|2||Octavio Gaona||February 19, 1939||Live event||Mexico City||1||350||Octavio Gaona won the championship to permanently establish it as an EMLL title. He also won Kallio's other World Middleweight Championship.||[G]|
|3||Tarzán López||February 4, 1940||Live event||Mexico City||1||681||López won both versions of the World Middleweight Championship. After this title change only the Mexican version remained active.||[G]|
|4||Black Guzmán||December 16, 1941||Live event||Mexico City||1||57||[G]|
|5||Tarzán López||February 11, 1942||Live event||Mexico City||2||1,473||[G]|
|6||Gory Guerrero||February 23, 1946||Live event||Mexico City||1||782||[G]|
|7||Mike Kelly||April 12, 1948||Live event||Mexico City||1||411||[G]|
|8||Tarzán López||May 28, 1949||Live event||N/A||3||481||[G]|
|9||Sugi Sito||September 21, 1950||EMLL 17th Anniversary Show||Mexico City||1||368||[G]|
|10||Enrique Llanes||September 24, 1951||EMLL 18th Anniversary Show||Mexico City||1||132||[G]|
|—||Vacated||February 3, 1952||—||—||—||—||EMLL vacated the championship for undocumented reasons.||[G]|
|11||Tarzán López||July 13, 1952||Live event||Mexico City||4||342||Tarzán López won a tournament to win the vacant title.||[G]|
|12||Sugi Sito||June 20, 1953||Live event||Mexico City||2||195||[G]|
|13||Santo||January 1, 1954||Live event||Mexico City||1||1,021||[G]|
|14||Rolando Vera||October 19, 1956||Live event||Monterrey, Nuevo León||1||1,455||[G]|
|15||René Guajardo||October 13, 1960||Live event||Monterrey, Nuevo León||1||415||[G]|
|16||Antonio Posa||December 2, 1961||Live event||Mexico City||1||140||[G]|
|17||René Guajardo||April 18, 1962||Live event||Mexico City||2||190||[G]|
|18||Rayo de Jalisco||October 25, 1962||Live event||Mexico City||1||583||[G]|
|19||Benny Galant||May 30, 1964||Live event||Mexico City||1||118||[G]|
|20||Rayo de Jalisco||September 25, 1964||EMLL 31st Anniversary Show||Mexico City||2||196||[G]|
|21||René Guajardo||April 9, 1965||Live event||Mexico City||3||400||[G]|
|22||Jerry London||May 14, 1966||Live event||Mexico City||1||48||[G]|
|23||René Guajardo||July 1, 1966||Live event||Monterrey, Nuevo León||4||253||[G]|
|24||Ray Mendoza||March 10, 1967||Live event||Mexico City||1||[Note 5]||[G]|
|—||Vacated||May 1967||—||—||—||—||EMLL vacated the championship for undocumented reasons.||[G]|
|25||René Guajardo||July 29, 1967||Live event||N/A||5||629||Guajardo won a decision match for the vacant title.||[G]|
|26||Rayo de Jalisco||April 18, 1969||Live event||Mexico City||3||119||[G]|
|27||El Solitario||August 15, 1969||EMLL 36th Anniversary Show||Mexico City||1||378||[G]|
|28||Mashio Koma||June 28, 1970||Live event||Mexico City||1||161||[G]|
|29||Aníbal||December 6, 1970||Live event||Mexico City||1||845||[G]|
|30||René Guajardo||March 30, 1973||Live event||Mexico City||6||[Note 6]||[G]|
|—||Vacated||1974||—||—||—||—||EMLL vacated the championship for undocumented reasons.||[G]|
|31||Aníbal||September 20, 1974||EMLL 41st Anniversary Show||Mexico City||2||[Note 7]||Aníbal defeated El Cobarde in a decision match to win the title.||[G]|
|—||Vacated||May 1975||—||—||—||—||The championship was vacated when Aníbal left EMLL to work for the Universal Wrestling Association.||[G]|
|32||Perro Aguayo||July 4, 1975||Live event||Mexico City||1||476||Perro Aguayo won a tournament to claim the vacant championship.||[G]|
|33||El Faraón||October 22, 1976||Live event||Mexico City||1||140||[G]|
|34||Perro Aguayo||March 11, 1977||Live event||Mexico City||2||114||[G]|
|35||Ringo Mendoza||July 3, 1977||Live event||Guadalajara, Jalisco||1||101||[G]|
|36||Joe Plardy||October 12, 1977||Live event||Acapulco, Guerrero||1||44||[G]|
|37||El Faraón||November 25, 1977||Live event||Mexico City||2||84||[G]|
|38||Ringo Mendoza||February 17, 1978||Live event||Los Angeles, California||2||51||[G]|
|39||Perro Aguayo||April 9, 1978||Live event||Guadalajara, Jalisco||3||75||[G]|
|40||Ringo Mendoza||June 23, 1978||Live event||Mexico City||3||51||[G]|
|41||Tony Salazar||August 13, 1978||Live event||Mexico City||1||174||[G]|
|42||Ringo Mendoza||February 3, 1979||Live event||Acapulco, Guerrero||4||218||[G]|
|43||Satoru Sayama||September 9, 1979||Live event||Guadalajara, Jalisco||1||201||[G]|
|44||El Satánico||March 28, 1980||Live event||Mexico City||1||20||[G]|
|45||Cachorro Mendoza||April 17, 1980||Live event||Monterrey, Nuevo León||1||59||[G]|
|46||Sangre Chicana||June 15, 1980||Live event||Monterrey, Nuevo León||1||217||[G]|
|47||Tony Salazar||January 18, 1981||Live event||Monterrey, Nuevo León||1||54||[G]|
|48||Sangre Chicana||March 13, 1981||Live event||Mexico City||2||21||[G]|
|49||Ringo Mendoza||April 3, 1981||Live event||Mexico City||5||240||[G]|
|50||El Faraón||November 29, 1981||Live event||Guadalajara, Jalisco||3||124||[G]|
|51||César Curiel||April 2, 1982||Live event||Mexico City||1||206||[G]|
|52||El Satánico||October 25, 1982||Live event||Mexico City||2||0||[G]|
|53||El Jalisco||October 25, 1982||Live event||Guadalajara, Jalisco||1||139||[G]|
|54||El Satánico||March 13, 1983||Live event||N/A||3||82||[G]|
|55||Lizmark||June 3, 1983||Live event||Mexico City||1||182||[G]|
|56||El Satánico||December 2, 1983||Live event||Mexico City||4||250||[G]|
|57||Gran Cochisse||August 8, 1984||Live event||Mexico City||1||37||[G]|
|58||El Satánico||September 14, 1984||Live event||Mexico City||5||16||[G]|
|59||Gran Cochisse||September 30, 1984||Live event||Guadalajara, Jalisco||2||49||[G]|
|60||Gran Hamada||November 18, 1984||Live event||Mexico City||1||138||[G]|
|61||La Fiera||April 5, 1985||Live event||Mexico City||1||106||[G]|
|62||Chamaco Valaguez||July 20, 1985||Live event||Puebla, Puebla||1||302||[G]|
|63||Gran Cochisse||May 18, 1986||Live event||N/A||3||152||[G]|
|64||Kung Fu||October 17, 1986||Live event||Mexico City||1||273||[G]|
|65||El Dandy||July 17, 1987||Live event||Mexico City||1||81||[G]|
|66||Kung Fu||October 6, 1987||Live event||Mexico City||2||248||[G]|
|67||Atlantis||June 10, 1988||Live event||Mexico City||1||37||[G]|
|68||Emilio Charles Jr.||July 17, 1988||Live event||Mexico City||1||11||[G]|
|69||Atlantis||July 28, 1988||Live event||Mexico City||2||15||[G]|
|70||Emilio Charles Jr.||August 12, 1988||Live event||Mexico City||2||259||[G]|
|71||Ángel Azteca||April 28, 1989||Live event||Mexico City||1||399||[G]|
|72||El Dandy||June 1, 1990||Live event||Mexico City||2||61||[G]|
|73||Atlantis||August 1, 1990||Live event||Acapulco, Guerrero||3||945||[G]|
|74||Mano Negra||March 3, 1993||Live event||Acapulco, Guerrero||1||81||[G]|
|75||Oro||May 23, 1993||Live event||N/A||1||41||[G]|
|76||Mano Negra||July 3, 1993||Live event||Puebla, Puebla||2||155||[G]|
|77||Corazón de León||December 4, 1993||Live event||Mexico City||1||339||[G]|
|78||Último Dragón||November 8, 1994||Live event||Tokyo, Japan||1||[Note 8]||Match promoted by WAR. Último Dragón stops defending the title around 1996.||[G]|
|—||Vacated||1998||—||—||—||—||Último Dragón was forced to vacate the championship due to an arm injury.||[G]|
|79||The Great Sasuke||February 7, 1999||Live event||Yokohama, Japan||1||1,546||Great Sasuke defeated Tokyo Magnum in tournament final to win the championship.||[G]|
|80||Último Dragón||May 3, 2003||Live event||Sendai, Miyagi, Japan||2||[Note 9]|||
|—||Vacated||May 2003||—||—||—||—||The championship was vacated when Último Dragon began to work for World Wrestling Entertainment.||[G]|
|81||Averno||September 3, 2004||Live event||Mexico City||1||120||Averno defeated Zumbido in a decision match for the vacant championship.|||
|82||Místico||January 1, 2005||Super Viernes||Mexico City||1||496|||
|83||Black Warrior||May 12, 2006||Super Viernes||Mexico City||1||474|||
|84||Místico||April 29, 2007||N/A||Mexico City||2||215|||
|85||Averno||November 30, 2007||Super Viernes||Mexico City||2||986||CMLL replaced the championship with the NWA World Historic Middleweight Championship on August 12, 2010.|||
|—||Deactivated||August 12, 2010||—||—||—||—||The championship was retired when CMLL returned it to NWA.|||
Reigns by combined lengthEdit
|¤||The exact length of at least one title reign is uncertain, so the shortest possible length is used.|
- The official weight of some of the champions have not been documented, making it possible that there was a heavier champion
- The official weight of some of the champions have not been documented, making it possible that there was a lighter champion
- One example of the weight limits being ignored was El Satánico holding the title, despite weighing 97 kg (214 lb).
- The length of Gus Kallio's title reign is too uncertain to calculate.
- The exact date on which Ray Mendoza vacated the championship is unknown, which means the title reign lasted between 51 and 81 days.
- The exact date on which René Guajardo vacated the championship during his sixth reign is unknown, which means the title reign lasted between 277 and 538 days.
- The exact date on which Aníbal vacated the championship during his second reign is unknown, which means the title reign lasted between 223 and 253 days.
- The exact date on which Último Dragon vacated the championship during his first reign is unknown, which means the title reign lasted between 1,150 and 1,514 days.
- The exact date on which Último Dragon vacated the championship during his second reign is unknown, which means the title reign lasted between 1 and 28 days.
- General source
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- "Rudos – Averno". Fuego en el ring (in Spanish). Archived from the original on July 11, 2011. Retrieved October 17, 2009.
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Articulo 242: "Super welter 82 kilos / Medio 87 kilos"
- "Londos Rated Champ By National Association". Reading Eagle. September 20, 1933. Retrieved February 20, 2010.
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in the late 1980s EMLL withdrew from the National Wrestling Alliance
- "Número Especial – Lo mejor de la lucha libre mexicana durante el 2004". SuperLuchas (in Spanish). January 24, 2005. 91.
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- "1984 Especial". Box y Lucha Magazine (in Spanish). January 10, 1985. pp. 2–28. issue 1656.
- "1986 Especial". Box y Lucha Magazine (in Spanish). January 8, 1987. pp. 2–28. issue 1760.
- F4W Staff (June 10, 2015). "ON THIS DAY IN PRO WRESTLING HISTORY (JUNE 10): HARLEY RACE BEATS RIC FLAIR FOR NWA TITLE, JERRY BLACKWELL TURNS BABYFACE". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved February 10, 2017.
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