Over the years, there have been many championships won and defended in WWE. Some championships have been around longer than others and have historical legacies.
What is very rare, especially today is for a wrestler to hold a championship for a long period. Superstars in WWE average just a few months as champions.
That being said, let's take a look at six of the longest title reigns in the history of WWE.
#6 Brock Lesnar was WWE Universal Champion for 503 days
The Beast Incarnate has been on a reign of terror in WWE ever since he debuted in 2002. He is one of the most feared and respected superstars WWE has seen. There's nobody quite like Brock Lesnar and the aura he brings every time his music hits.
From defeating The Rock and winning his first WWE Championship a few months after his debut, to ending The Undertaker's streak at WrestleMania, he's done it all. Under the guidance and management of Paul Heyman, Lesnar brings an added dose of legitimacy to WWE that no other superstar can match.
Brock Lesnar left WWE in 2004 citing burnout but returned on a part-time deal in 2012. Despite this deal, he came to have one of the most impressive reigns as Universal Champion between 2017-2018. Brock ended his feud with Goldberg at WrestleMania 33 and began his first reign as Universal Champion.
He went on to defeat WWE superstars such as Samoa Joe, Braun Strowman, Roman Reigns, and Kane. However, the WWE Universe began to tire of Lesnar as champion because of his lack of activity on weekly television. In the end, he lost the championship to Roman Reigns at SummerSlam 2018.
Paul Heyman spoke to Sports Illustrated in August 2018 about Brock Lesnar and his reign:
"I think there are a lot of people who would argue that I have not been in the WWE business, the pro-wrestling business, the sports entertainment business, et al for quite some time, and that I've arrived at a place in my career where I am in the Brock Lesnar business," Paul Heyman said. (h/t Sports Illustrated)
Roman Reigns is slowly catching up with Brock to try and match his record reign. Whether that will happen remains to be seen but, for now, as Paul Heyman mentioned, we're still in the Brock Lesnar business.
#5 Asuka was NXT Women's Champion for 522 days
WWE NXT introduced the NXT Women's Championship in 2013. British-born superstar Paige was the first-ever champion, but it was Asuka who took home the mantle as being the longest-reigning champion.
She remained undefeated throughout her time on NXT and, sadly, had to relinquish the championship when she suffered an injury. Her reign began on April 1, 2016, and ended in September 2017. Shayna Baszler is the only superstar to almost match her reign at 416 days.
#4 Lex Luger was WWE United States Champion for 523 days
Former WWE Slammy Award winner Lex Luger became the United States Champion in 1989 when the title was being defended in the NWA. He won the championship at a house show in Bluefield, West Virginia, defeating Michael P.S Hayes. The match eventually aired on NWA World Wide Wrestling on tape delay.
Luger spoke with Sportskeeda in December 2018 about his illustrious career in NWA, WWE, and WCW:
"I look back at my fifteen-year career with great memories. I worked with probably almost virtually every top performer of my era, and I don't look at what I didn't accomplish. Just look at the list of stuff you mentioned. I'm thrilled and honored to be able to have that kind of career for fifteen years looking back now," Lex Luger said.
Luger's reign still tops the list as being the longest-reigning United States Champion of all time. Rick Rude, Dean Ambrose, and MVP follow behind with 300 plus days as champions, respectively
#3 Pete Dunne was NXT UK Champion for 685 days
Pete Dunne's rise in WWE has been a unique one. Dunne had to claw back after losing in the final of the first-ever United Kingdom Championship Tournament. His potential was showcased when he eventually defeated then-champion Tyler Bates in a show-stealing match at NXT TakeOver: Chicago in 2017.
The near two-year reign was something to behold. He faced all-comers and even defended the championship in other promotions. Like all championship reigns, it sadly had to come to an end. The unstoppable WALTER defeated Dunne at NXT TakeOver: New York in April 2019.
Following his reign as NXT UK Champion, Pete Dunne became full-time in the United States, performing on the main NXT brand.
#2 WALTER was the WWE NXT UK Champion for 870 days
Defeating Pete Dunne at NXT TakeOver: New York, the Imperium leader went on a run to become the second-longest reigning champion in WWE history. He surpassed two years as a champion, which in modern times is something to behold.
WALTER did not defend the NXT UK Championship for nine months because of the global COVID pandemic. Every day as champion counts though, and it was what goes down in the ring that truly counts. WALTER defeated names such as Tyler Bate, Dave Mastiff, Tommaso Ciampa, and Rampage Brown during his hard-hitting reign.
He was eventually toppled by long-time rival Ilja Dragunov in an extraordinary match at NXT TakeOver: 36, with his historic reign coming to end.
#1 Bruno Sammartino was WWE Champion for 2,803 days
2,803 days as a champion. It is the stuff of legends. Bruno Sammartino managed to accomplish this incredible reign as WWE Champion from 1963 until 1978. It was a different period in wrestling where the championship wasn't defended as often, but it doesn't take anything away from Bruno's reign.
Sammartino was finally inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2013 at Madison Square Garden. His career was celebrated, and modern-day fans were provided the story of Bruno's achievement. It is safe to say that his reign will never be matched.