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  08-04-2006, 04:51 AM
 
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Hi Everyone,
Just a quick question. A few people state that Hulk Hogan was the first ever IWGP Champion in 1983 however when you look at the title history it says the title started in 1987? I am not too familiar with the History of NJPW. But would like to know the answer to this question if anyone knows it?

Thanks JAMIE...
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  #2  
  08-04-2006, 08:19 AM
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The 1st IWGP Champion was Antonio Inoki in 1987

IWGP stands for New Japan's own governing body, the International Wrestling Grand Prix (IWGP). IWGP titles came about in 1985 with the tag belts and had more added later.

Before 85-87 was many belts featured in New Japan's competition

* NWF World Heavyweight Championship
* NWA North American Tag Team Championship
* WWF International Tag Team Championship
* WWF Junior Heavyweight Championship
* NWF North American Championship
* WWF North American Championship
* NJPW All Asia Heavyweight Championship
* NJPW All Asia Tag Team Championship

Hogan in 83 became the first IWGP "Tournament" Winner , different then the IWGP "Championship" that was created later
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  08-04-2006, 10:23 AM
 
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I may be wrong about this, but I remember Hulk wearing the IWGP belt. I always thought he won the belt in the tourny final over Inoki where Inoki acts like he got killed from an axe bomber and is about to swallow his tongue. I thought when it came time for Hulk to drop the title to Inoki he didn't want to do the job so he lost the belt on a lame count out and the crowd almost rioted.
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  #4  
  08-04-2006, 10:27 PM
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No you were right William but that was not the "IWGP" Heavyweight Belt in the sense that it was in 87, it was the IWGP League Title...same belt and same significance but I guess they wanted to try it out a few years. In 1981, Inoki disbanded the NWF Heavyweight Championship in favor of the IWGP League. Each May/June from 1983 to 1987, a tournament was held to crown the winner of the IWGP League. After losing to Hogan the first year (in controversial fashion), Inoki would win the League in 1984, 1986, and 1987. After his win in 1987 it was decided that Inoki would become the first ever IWGP Heavyweight Champion.

That is probably where all the controversy comes from, same belt, essentially same status but "officially" the IWGP Heavyweight Championship is considered as being valid in 1987
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  08-06-2006, 07:29 AM
 
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I guess it makes sense because I remember the belt only got defended once a year. I remember during that time period there were few title matches of any kind on tv(kinda like WWECW, lol). We got New Japan on tv sporadically over the years in Hawaii and I saw the match that Inoki won the belt via countout and the crowd hated it.
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  #6  
  08-06-2006, 01:45 PM
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Hey wild will. Hows about those herman heads episodes lol
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