World Heavyweight Championship - Triple H

September 02, 2002 - November 17, 2002

Prior to Sept. 2, 2002, WWE recognized only one World Champion, and that champion represented both Raw and SmackDown. Just after SummerSlam, however, champion Brock Lesnar inked a deal to become exclusive to SmackDown, leaving Raw without a champion.

Raw General Manager Eric Bischoff then declared that since Lesnar had left for SmackDown, that Raw needed its own champion. So with that, he opened a briefcase and pulled out the old WCW Championship and gave it to Triple H, naming him the first World Heavyweight Champion. Upset that Triple H was merely handed the championship, Ric Flair disputed the decision noting that he was a 16-time Champion and not once had anything handed to him. Triple H agreed to face Flair later that evening in his first title defense. The Nature Boy gave it a valiant effort, but "The Game" hit the Pedigree for the pin.



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