The Complete History of the WWE Championship - Part 9
The wrestler of the year in 2000 was Triple H.
"The Game" became a bonafide main event star and contested numerous classic matches with a wide array of opponents: Cactus Jack, The Rock, Chris Jericho, Kurt Angle and others during a superlative twelve months inside the squared circle.
After establishing Stone Cold Steve Austin and The Rock as permanent headliners between 1998 and 1999, WWE repeated the trick with Triple H in late 1999 into 2000.
A career mid carder, Triple H finally broke out from the pack with dedication and hard work. Previously considered a technical worker who lacked personality or the required pizzazz to headline, "The Game" proved everyone wrong with dynamic performances and a feud with Cactus Jack in early 2000, demonstrated Tripper's previously unseen brawling skills.
In the absence of Stone Cold Steve Austin, who was finally sidelined in November 1999, when time ran out for his injured neck, Triple H seized the initiative and played the political game.
Supported by his brilliant on-screen performances, Triple H ingratiated himself with the McMahon family and supplemented his position as top man in the company.
"The Cerebral Assassin" shrewdly identified that he was never going to be able to compete with The Rock in the popularity stakes and instead firmly established himself as WWE's premier heel wrestler.
It was a strategy that paid off, as "The Game" became the best performer in wrestling in 2000 and a true superstar.
In late 2000, he began dating his boss Vince McMahon's daughter, Stephanie, and found himself with an unofficial role on the booking committee.
Tripper was the man, onscreen and off.
In this installment, the last few title reigns of 1999 are remembered as well as the first few reigns of the year 2000.
In the upcoming part 10, we look at the final reigns of the Attitude Era as WWE begins to create new stars and new WWE champions.