World Heavyweight Championship
PromotionNew Japan Pro-Wrestling
Date established1972

The World Heavyweight Championship (世界ヘビー級王座, sekai hebī-kyū ōza), also referred to as the Real World Championship was a championship established and promoted by New Japan Pro-Wrestling.[1] Karl Gotch was billed as a first champion by New Japan Pro-Wrestling. It used the belt (or belt replica) of American Wrestling Alliance (Ohio)'s AWA World Heavyweight Championship,[a] which was held by Karl Gotch from September 11, 1962 to September 7, 1964.[2] The title was successfully defended only once, by Antonio Inoki against Red Pimpernel on day 12 of New Golden Series on October 9, 1972.[3] Karl Gotch was the final champion in his second reign,[4] winning the title from Antonio Inoki on October 10, 1972.[5]

Title history

No. Overall reign number
Reign Reign number for the specific champion
Days Number of days held
Defences Number of successful defences
N/A Unknown information
(NET) Championship change took place "no earlier than" the date listed
No. Champion Championship change Reign statistics Notes Ref.
Date Event Location Reign Days Defences
1 Karl Gotch January 13, 1972 (NET) N/A N/A 1 N/A 0 Recognized as a champion by New Japan Pro-Wrestling using the belt (or its replica) of AWA World Heavyweight Championship.
2 Antonio Inoki October 4, 1972 New Golden Series Tokyo, Japan 1 6 1 Won the title via count-out. Lou Thesz was a special guest referee. [6][7]
3 Karl Gotch October 10, 1972 New Golden Series Osaka, Japan 2 N/A 0 [5]
Deactivated October 10, 1972 (NET) Championship abandoned without any formal announcement.

See also


  1. ^ Not to be confused with the AWA World Heavyweight Championship promoted by the Verne Gagne's American Wrestling Alliance.


  1. ^ "チャンピオン・ベルト・ギャラリー 新日本プロレス". (in Japanese). Retrieved 2020-12-12.((cite web)): CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  2. ^ "AWA World Heavyweight Title (Indiana / Ohio / Colorado)". Retrieved 2020-03-26.
  3. ^ "NJPW New Golden Series - Tag 12 « Events Database « CAGEMATCH - The Internet Wrestling Database". Retrieved 2020-08-11.((cite web)): CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  4. ^ " - SPECIALIST: List of Deceased Wrestlers for 2007 with Details (Updated as needed)". Retrieved 2020-03-26.
  5. ^ a b "NJPW New Golden Series - Tag 13 « Events Database « CAGEMATCH - The Internet Wrestling Database". Retrieved 2020-03-26.
  6. ^ "NJPW New Golden Series - Tag 10 « Events Database « CAGEMATCH - The Internet Wrestling Database". Retrieved 2020-06-11.((cite web)): CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  7. ^ "NJPW Sumo Hall Show (Oct '72) at Old Sumo Hall - Kuramae Kokugikan wrestling results - Internet Wrestling Database". Retrieved 2020-06-11.
Sporting positions Preceded byFirst New Japan Pro-Wrestling's top heavyweight championship 1972 Succeeded byNWF Heavyweight Championship