|IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship|
The IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship (IWGP US ヘビー王座 IWGP US Hebī Ōza) is quaternary singles championship in the New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) promotion. "IWGP" is the acronym of NJPW's governing body, the International Wrestling Grand Prix. The title was announced on May 12, 2017, with the inaugural champion crowned on the weekend of July 1 and 2, 2017, during NJPW's G1 Special in USA shows in Long Beach, California. The title became NJPW's eighth active championship.
On May 12, 2017, during the third night of the War of the Worlds tour, co-produced by New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) and Ring of Honor (ROH), NJPW United States Ambassador George Carroll announced the creation of the IWGP United States Championship. The following day, NJPW revealed the title's official name as the IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship. The title is part of an American expansion plan, which NJPW had made public in the months prior to the announcement. Plans had been made to run extended tours in the United States with California as the base, starting in 2018. The plan was a direct response to WWE taking four wrestlers from NJPW in January 2016. Tetsuya Naito noted how the new title had the exact same concept as the IWGP Intercontinental Championship, which had been established during NJPW's May 2011 U.S. tour, promoted in conjunction with Jersey All Pro Wrestling (JAPW). NJPW chairman Naoki Sugabayashi stated that he wanted the title to be defended at future NJPW events in the U.S. as well as events held by ROH. The title belt was made red to distinguish it from the black IWGP Heavyweight Championship belt and the white IWGP Intercontinental Championship belt.
The first champion would be crowned in a tournament on the weekend of July 1 and 2, 2017, during NJPW's G1 Special in USA shows in Long Beach, California. Though it was originally announced that the tournament would be contested in a round-robin format, Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter later reported that the tournament would in fact take place in a single-elimination format, stating that there had been a "mistake in the translation". Jay Lethal was the first participant announced for the tournament on May 12. On May 18, Hangman Page was officially added to the tournament. The other six participants as well as the bracket of the tournament, confirmed as a single-elimination tournament, were revealed on June 12. Kenny Omega went on to defeat Tomohiro Ishii in the finals to become the inaugural IWGP United States Heavyweight Champion.
|Zack Sabre Jr.||10:04|
|Zack Sabre Jr.||Pin|
Since its creation, the IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship has been defended in both Japan and the United States with the first Japanese defense taking place on September 24, 2017, at Destruction in Kobe and the first stateside defense taking place on October 15, 2017, at Global Wars: Chicago. In November 2017, after it had been announced that WWE wrestler Chris Jericho would be challenging for the title at Wrestle Kingdom 12 in Tokyo Dome, Omega stated that the IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship had already surpassed the IWGP Intercontinental Championship as the number two championship in NJPW. The promotion ranks the title in the second tier, behind both the IWGP Heavyweight and Intercontinental Championships and alongside the NEVER Openweight Championship. On July 7 at G1 Special in San Francisco, Juice Robinson became the first American wrestler to hold the IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship. On June 5, Jon Moxley became the second American wrestler to hold the IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship. He would vacate the title, after being unable to wrestle in a scheduled championship defense at King of Pro-Wrestling on October 14, due to travel issues arising from Typhoon Hagibis, beofre regainning it on January 4, 2020 at Wrestle Kingdom 14 in Tokyo Dome from Lance Archer.
In 2020–21, the COVID-19 pandemic prevented the champion Jon Moxley from travelling to Japan for NJPW events while keeping his commitments with All Elite Wrestling (AEW), with whom he is also contracted. His AEW contract also prevented him from appearing on NJPW's American events. This resulted in the championship not being defended from February 2020 to February 2021, when an arrangement was made between the two promotions to allow Moxley to appear on NJPW's American television show NJPW Strong in a title defense. On May 12, 2021 Moxley would defend the title against Yuji Nagata on All Elite Wrestling's television show AEW Dynamite marking the second time that title was defended on another American wrestling promotion besides Ring of Honor in October 2017. On July 21 at AEW's Fyter Fest, Lance Archer regained the championship from Moxley, this was the first time that the title changed hands outside the promotion and also the second time that a NJPW title changed hands outside of the promotion after La Sombra defeating Shinsuke Nakamura to win IWGP Intercontinental Championship at CMLL on Televisa in Mexico City, Mexico on May 31, 2013.
|1||Kenny Omega||1||July 2, 2017||Long Beach, California, United States||210 Days||4||Defeated Tomohiro Ishii in a tournament final to become the first champion.|
|2||Jay White||1||January 28, 2018||Sapporo, Japan||160 Days||3|
|3||Juice Robinson||1||July 7, 2018||Daly City, California, United States||86 Days||0|
|4||Cody||1||September 30, 2018||Long Beach, California, United States||96 Days||0|
|5||Juice Robinson||2||January 4, 2019||Tokyo, Japan||152 Days||3|
|6||Jon Moxley||1||June 5, 2019||Tokyo, Japan||131 Days||0|
|—||Vacated||—||October 14, 2019||—||—||—||Vacated after Moxley was unable to wrestle in a scheduled championship defense at King of Pro-Wrestling due to travel issues arising from Typhoon Hagibis.|
|7||Lance Archer||1||October 14, 2019||Tokyo, Japan||82 Days||1||Defeated Juice Robinson in a decision match to win the vacant championship.|
|8||Jon Moxley||2||January 4, 2020||Tokyo, Japan||565||5|
|9||Lance Archer||2||July 21, 2021||Garland, Texas, United States||6+||0|
|†||Indicates the current champion|
|6||Lance Archer †||2||1||87+|
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