5 Best Intercontinental Title Matches of All Time
The Intercontinental Championship was created on September 1, 1979. It was "won" by WWE legend Pat Patterson in a fictitious tournament that was claimed to have occurred in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil.
Patterson, reigning as the WWF North American Heavyweight Champion, was deemed the WWF South American Heavyweight Champion upon being crowned tournament winner, and the titles were immediately merged to become the WWF Intercontinental Championship.
The title has been defended on six of the seven continents over the years, and hopefully one day WWE finds a way to have a show in Antarctica so it can complete its journey. There have been long reigns (Honky Tonk Man held the belt for 454 days), extremely short reigns (Dean (Shane) Douglas held the belt for under 14 minutes, co-Champions (Chris Jericho and Chyna, who was also the first and to this day only female Intercontinental Champion), and dual champions.
Ultimate Warrior defeated Hulk Hogan at WrestleMania VI to win the WWF Championship while his IC Championship was also on the line and Triple H held the IC Title while he was Tag Team Champion with Steve Austin.
D'Lo Brown, Jeff Jarrett, and Kurt Angle all held the European and Intercontinental belts at the same time (Euro-Continental Champions) and the list goes on.
The Intercontinental Title has also been unified with another belt on four different occasions. The first time was when Edge (WCW United States Champion) defeated Test (WWF Intercontinental Champion) to dissolve the US Title into the IC Title at Survivor Series 2001.
The IC Title swallowed the European Title in a ladder match that saw IC Champ RVD defeat European Champ Jeff Hardy on RAW in July 2002 (RVD would not be recognized as Euro-Continental Champion, sadly).
RVD retired the Hardcore Championship a months later, also on RAW, when he defeated Tommy Dreamer with both titles on the line. Three weeks after Kane defeated Chris Jericho to win the belt, it was dissolved into the World Heavyweight Championship when World Heavyweight Champion Triple H defeated IC Champion Kane at No Mercy in 2002.
That lasted for a little more than half a year, as Stone Cold, co-General Manager of RAW at the time, reactivated it (for no real reason) in May 2003. It has been active ever since.
Some of the greatest recognized matches of all time have been for the Intercontinental Championship. The following are the Top 5 best Intercontinental Championship matches.
Only five matches made the thick of this list, but there are a number of very good, even great matches, that deserve to be recognized. From hardcore clashes to dazzling displays of professional wrestling, here are some other Intercontinental Championship matches worth going out of your way to see. This is in no particular order.
Randy Orton vs. Mick Foley (Backlash 2004)
- This is the match that, in the eyes of many people made Randy Orton a star. After months of Evolution teasing and brutalizing Foley, he was finally able to get his hands on Orton, one-on-one. Neither man disappointed, and Randy Orton proved his toughness when he was thrown, shirtless, back-first onto a pile of thumbtacks.
Shawn Michaels vs. Razor Ramon (SummerSlam 1995)
- The argument between fans will last forever. Which of the two HBK vs. Razor ladder matches was better? Was it their first, the match that set the bar for all other ladder matches, from WrestleMania X? Was it the rematch at SummerSlam more than a year later? The WrestleMania one is somewhere in the top 5, so this list has made its decision.
Seth Rollins vs. Finn Balor vs. The Miz (WrestleMania 34)
- In the opening match of the main card, Rollins, Balor, and Miz absolutely tore the house down and nearly set it on fire in their triple threat for the IC Title. It was bell-to-bell action with a raucous crowd, and the reaction was even more insane when Rollins earned his first Intercontinental Championship.
Bret Hart vs. British Bulldog (SummerSlam 1992)
- In a match considered by many to be one of the greatest matches of all time in general, not just for the IC Title, the British Bulldog saw his most iconic and memorable moment. He won the IC Title over Bret Hart in his home of England in front of a massive gathering of 80,000 fans at Wembley Stadium. As great of a match, and especially as great of a moment, it is, this match was more of a blip on the radar than important classic. Bulldog would lose the belt mere months later and never win the title again. This was his true top moment as a singles wrestler, but it wasn't a crowning moment. They threw him a bone in front of the hometown audience.
Chris Jericho vs. Rey Mystero (Extreme Rules & The Bash, 2009)
- Mysterio and Jericho were rivals in the Cruiserweight division in WCW, but rarely met in WWE. Their only actual feud came in the middle of 2009, which saw back-to-back fantastic matches, the second of which had Mysterio's mask on the line.
Eddie Guerrero vs. Rob Van Dam (Backlash 2002)
- If you want to see the definition of a match that can be both one-sided and great at the same time, give this one a look. Eddie Guerrero took RVD to school that night, and decisively became the IC Champ for his second and final time. This is less remembered than their ladder match for the title a month later on RAW (the match where the fan knocked the ladder over), but both are worth checking out.