World Light Heavyweight Championship (National Wrestling Association)

World Light Heavyweight Championship
Image of the original belt used in the 1930s
Details
PromotionNational Boxing Association (April 1930 – September 1930)
National Wrestling Association (September 1930-early 1960s)
Date establishedApril 4, 1930[1]
Date retiredEarly 1960s[1]

The National Wrestling Association World Light Heavyweight Championship was a professional wrestling championship originally sanctioned by the National Boxing Association (NBA) and subsequently sanctioned by the National Wrestling Association (NWA), an offshoot of the NBA. The championship had an upper limit of 175 lb (79 kg), anyone above that limit was considered a heavyweight. The championship was created in 1930 and abandoned in the early 1960s.

In 1930 the NBA decided to try and regulate professional wrestling in the way they had tried to regulate boxing in the United States. One of their first steps was to try and clear up the World Championship picture in the hopes of establishing one generally recognized championship. To that end they sanctioned a number of world championship tournaments, including one for the World Light Heavyweight Championship. The NBA requested that contenders post as $2,500 forfeit to enter the tournament.[2] Only three light heavyweights paid the forfeit, which meant that Pinki Gardner faced Joe Banaskie, and the winner of that match would face Hugh Nichols for the championship.[3] Nichols won the bout and became the first NBA sanctioned World Light Heavyweight Champion.[1][4] In September 1930 the NBA formed the National Wrestling Association to allow the organization to focus on pro wrestling.[5] In 1948 a number of promoters joined together to form the National Wrestling Alliance, forming a network of promoters across the United States and within a year or two the Alliance would usurp the Association as the controlling organization. In 1958 then champion Frank Stojack was stripped of the Association championship due to not having defended it for a long period of time. Subsequently, the Association decided to sanction the Alliance's NWA World Light Heavyweight Championship when Dory Dixon defeated Al Kashey in a match overseen by presidents of both the National Wrestling Association and the National Wrestling Alliance.[1][4] In the early 1960s the Association existed in name only, withdrawing their recognition of the Alliance championships but not sanctioning a separate championship.[1][4]

Hugh Nichols was the first World Light Heavyweight Champion, winning the championship on April 4, 1940. The last officially sanctioned champion was Gory Guerrero, who won the championship on July 30, 1960. Danny McShain held the championship a total of ten times during his career, a record for most reigns.[1][4] Frank Stojack's reign, lasting from August 10, 1953 until he was stripped of the championship on November 30, 1957, is the longest reign totaling 1,573 days. Danny McShain's third and seventh reign as champion only lasted seven days, although due to gaps in the championship history the possibility exists that someone else had a shorter reign.[1][4]

Title history[]

Key
No. Overall reign number
Reign Reign number for the specific champion
Days Number of days held
N/A Unknown information
(NLT) Championship change took place "no later than" the date listed
No. Champion Championship change Reign statistics Notes Ref.
Date Event Location Reign Days
1 Hugh Nichols April 4, 1930 Live event Cincinnati, Ohio 1 1,431 Defeated Joe Banaski in a tournament final to become the first champion. Frank Wolf defeated Nichols in March 1933 in Dallas, Texas, but the NBA stated that Nichols was fouled and Nichols remained champion. Nichols defeated Wolf in a July 1933 rematch in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. [1][4][6]
2 Leroy McGuirk March 5, 1934 Live event Tulsa, Oklahoma 1 1,125 Ted Christy defeated McGuirk on January 13, 1936[7] and was recognized as champion in California only; McGuirk continued to be recognized by the NWA. [1][4][8]
3 Bobby Chick April 3, 1937 Live event Tulsa, Oklahoma 1 46   [1][4]
4 Hugh Nichols May 19, 1937 Live event Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 2 18   [1][4][6]
5 Wild Red Berry June 6, 1937 Live event Oklahoma 1 127   [1][4][9]
6 Danny McShain October 11, 1937 Live event Hollywood, California 1 244   [1][4][10]
7 Leroy McGuirk June 12, 1938 Live event N/A 2 146   [1][4][8]
8 Danny McShain November 5, 1938 Live event Hollywood, California 2 [Note 1] Jesse James defeated McShain by disqualifiction in March 1939 in California. McShain continues to be recognized by NWA as the championship could not change hands by disqualification; James was recognized as champion in California only. [1][4][10]
Championship history is unrecorded from November 5, 1938 to December 1939.
9 Bob Gregory December 1939 Live event N/A 1 [Note 2]   [1][4]
Championship history is unrecorded from December 1939 to April 22, 1940.
10 Jesse James April 22, 1940 Live event Tulsa, Oklahoma 1 133   [1][4]
11 Wild Red Berry September 2, 1940 Live event Hollywood, California 2 336   [1][4][9]
12 Paavo Katonan August 4, 1941 Live event Hollywood, California 1 21   [1][4]
13 Danny McShain August 25, 1941 Live event Hollywood, California 3 7   [1][4][10]
14 Wild Red Berry September 1, 1941 Live event Hollywood, California 3 91   [1][4][9]
15 Billy Varga December 1, 1941 Live event Hollywood, California 1 21   [1][4]
16 Wild Red Berry December 22, 1941 Live event Hollywood, California 4 [Note 3] Paavo Katonan defeated Berry by disqualification on May 18, 1941 but the championship change was only acknowledged in Oklahoma. Berry defeated Katonan on June 1 to end the local reign. [1][4][9]
17 Billy Raborn August 1942 Live event Tulsa, Oklahoma 1 [Note 4]   [1][4]
18 Billy Varga March 22, 1943 Live event Hollywood, California 2 35   [1][4]
19 Gorilla Ramos April 26, 1943 Live event Hollywood, California 1 168   [1][4]
20 Wild Red Berry October 11, 1943 Live event Hollywood, California 5 77   [1][4][9]
21 The Gray Mask December 27, 1943 Live event Hollywood, California 1 77   [1][4]
22 Gorilla Ramos March 13, 1944 Live event Hollywood, California 2 14   [1][4]
23 The Gray Mask March 27, 1944 Live event Hollywood, California 2 28   [1][4]
24 Wild Red Berry April 24, 1944 Live event Hollywood, California 6 231   [1][4][9]
25 Dick Trout December 11, 1944 Live event Hollywood, California 1 42   [1][4]
26 Danny McShain January 22, 1945 Live event Hollywood, California 4 63   [1][4][10]
27 Dick Trout March 26, 1945 Live event Hollywood, California 2 21   [1][4]
28 Danny McShain April 16, 1945 Live event Hollywood, California 5 147   [1][4][10]
29 Wild Red Berry September 10, 1945 Live event Hollywood, California 7 126   [1][4][9]
30 Ernie Piluso January 14, 1946 Live event Hollywood, California 1 91   [1][4][11]
31 Danny McShain April 15, 1946 Live event Hollywood, California 6 30   [1][4][10]
32 Ernie Piluso May 15, 1946 Live event Hollywood, California 2 96   [1][4]
33 Martino Angelo August 19, 1946 Live event Hollywood, California 1 28   [1][4]
34 Danny McShain September 16, 1946 Live event Hollywood, California 7 7   [1][4][10]
35 Martino Angelo September 23, 1946 Live event Hollywood, California 2 126   [1][4]
36 Danny McShain January 27, 1947 Live event Hollywood, California 8 14   [1][4][10]
37 Martino Angelo February 10, 1947 Live event Hollywood, California 3 84   [1][4]
38 Danny McShain May 5, 1947 Live event Hollywood, California 9 120   [1][4][10][12]
39 Wild Red Berry September 2, 1947 Live event San Diego, California 8 11   [1][4][9]
40 Danny McShain September 13, 1947 Live event Visalia, California 10 [Note 5]   [1][4][10]
41 Wild Red Berry 1947 Live event San Diego, California 9 [Note 6]   [1][4][9]
42 Jan Blears November 10, 1947 Live event Phoenix, Arizona 1 [Note 7]   [1][4]
Championship history is unrecorded from November 10, 1947 to March 15, 1948.
43 Jackie Nichols March 15, 1948 Live event Phoenix, Arizona 1 71   [1][4]
44 Duke Keomuka May 25, 1948 Live event Phoenix, Arizona 1 [Note 8] Nichols was still billed as champion in Bakersfield, California on June 2, 1948 [1][4][13]
Championship history is unrecorded from December 28, 1948 to May 25, 1948.
45 Jack Curtis December 28, 1948 (NLT) Live event N/A 1 [Note 9] Held the Louisiana version of the world title, listed as National Wrestling Association champion in a Monroe, Louisiana newspaper on December 28, 1948 [1][4]
Championship history is unrecorded from December 28, 1948 to February 24, 1950.
data-sort-value="45.6" | — February 24, 1950 Championship declared vacant for undocumented reasons [1][4]
46 Andy Tremaine April 18, 1950 Live event El Paso, Texas 1 1,210 Defeated Monte LaDue. Declined the opportunity to wrestle the National Wrestling Alliance champion to unify the championships. Retires as champion in 1952. [1][4]
47 Frank Stojack August 10, 1953 Live event Spokane, Washington 1 1,573 Defeated National Wrestling Alliance champion Gypsy Joe to win the National Wrestling Alliance championship, title reign is also recognized by the National Wrestling Association, sanctioning the National Wrestling Alliance championship from that point on. [1][4][14][15]
Vacated November 30, 1957 Championship vacated due to inactivity. Frank Stojack subsequently announces his retirement [1][4][14][15]
Moe Smith October 29, 1958 Live event Carson City, Nevada Defeated Luigi Macera in the final of a tournament originally supposed to be for the NWA (Alliance) championship, but recognition was withdrawn before the tournament took place. Smith continued to claim the title in Reno, Nevada, Idaho and Utah until at least November 14, 1962 [1][4][15]
48 Dory Dixon February 13, 1959 Live event Mexico City, Mexico 1 289 Defeated Al Kashey, the #1 contender appointed by the National Wrestling Association, to be recognized by the National Wrestling Alliance. Presidents from both organizations in attendance. [1][4][15][14]
49 Ray Mendoza November 29, 1959 Live event Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico 1 244   [1][4][15][14]
50 Gory Guerrero July 30, 1960 Live event Mexico City, Mexico 1 [Note 10]   [1][4][15][14][16]
Deactivated 1960s The National Wrestling Association ceased to sanction the championship in the early 1960s. [1][4]

Footnotes[]

  1. ^ The exact date McShain lost the championship is uncertain, which means that the championship reign lasted between 391 and 421 days.
  2. ^ The exact date Bob Gregory won the championship is uncertain, which means that the championship reign lasted between 1 and 143 days.
  3. ^ The exact date that Red Berry lost the championship is uncertain, which means that the championship reign lasted between 222 and 251 days.
  4. ^ The exact date where Billy Raborn won the championship is uncertain, which means that the championship reign lasted between 204 and 233 days.
  5. ^ The exact date McShain lost the championship is uncertain, which means that the championship reign lasted between 1 day and 3,710 days.
  6. ^ The exact date Berry lost the championship is uncertain, which means that the championship reign lasted between 1 day and 3,710 days.
  7. ^ The exact date Blears lost the championship is uncertain, which means that the championship reign lasted between 1 day and 126 days.
  8. ^ The exact date Keomuka lost the championship is uncertain, which means that the championship reign lasted between 1 day and 217 days.
  9. ^ The exact date Jack Curtis won the championship is uncertain, which means that his championship reign lasted between 423 and 639 days.
  10. ^ The exact date that the National Wrestling Association withdrew their recognition is unclear, which means that the length of this reign is too uncertain to calculate.

See also[]

References[]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am an ao ap aq ar as at au av aw ax ay az ba bb bc bd be bf bg bh bi bj bk "National Wrestling Association World Light Heavyweight Title". Wrestling-Titles.com. Retrieved May 1, 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ "Matmen must post forfeit for sanction". Associated Press. January 31, 1930. Retrieved May 5, 2017. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ "Boxing body draws mat pairings". Associated Press. February 3, 1930. Retrieved May 5, 2017. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am an ao ap aq ar as at au av aw ax ay az ba bb bc bd be bf bg Duncan, Royal; Will, Gary (2000). "United States: 19th Century & Widely defended Titles – NWA, WWF, AWA, IWA, ECW, NWA: National Wrestling Association World Light Heavyweight Title". Wrestling Title Histories (4 ed.). Archeus Communications. p. 21. ISBN 0-9698161-1-1.
  5. ^ Hornbaker, Rick. "National Wrestling Association History". Legacy of Wrestling. Retrieved May 6, 2017. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  6. ^ a b Hornbaker, Tim (2016). "Nichols, Hugh". Legends of Pro Wrestling – 150 years of headlocks, body slams, and piledrivers (Revised ed.). New York, New York: Sports Publishing. p. 32. ISBN 978-1-61321-808-2.
  7. ^ Hoops, Brian (January 13, 2019). "Pro wrestling history (01/13): TNA Genesis 2013". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved January 18, 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  8. ^ a b Hornbaker, Tim (2016). "McGuirk, Leroy". Legends of Pro Wrestling – 150 years of headlocks, body slams, and piledrivers (Revised ed.). New York, New York: Sports Publishing. p. 133. ISBN 978-1-61321-808-2.
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i Hornbaker, Tim (2016). "Berry, Red". Legends of Pro Wrestling – 150 years of headlocks, body slams, and piledrivers (Revised ed.). New York, New York: Sports Publishing. p. 61. ISBN 978-1-61321-808-2.
  10. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Hornbaker, Tim (2016). "McShain, Danny". Legends of Pro Wrestling – 150 years of headlocks, body slams, and piledrivers (Revised ed.). New York, New York: Sports Publishing. p. 135. ISBN 978-1-61321-808-2.
  11. ^ Hoops, Brian (January 14, 2019). "Pro wrestling history (01/14): Christian wins NWA World Title". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved January 18, 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  12. ^ F4W Staff (May 5, 2015). "On this day in pro wrestling history (May 5): Bruno Vs. Gorilla in Puerto Rico, 2nd annual Von Erich Memorial Parade of Champions". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved February 10, 2017. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  13. ^ Hornbaker, Tim (2016). "Keomuka, Duke". Legends of Pro Wrestling – 150 years of headlocks, body slams, and piledrivers (Revised ed.). New York, New York: Sports Publishing. p. 118. ISBN 978-1-61321-808-2.
  14. ^ a b c d e Duncan, Royal; Will, Gary (2000). "Mexico: EMLL NWA World Light Heavyweight Title". Wrestling title histories: professional wrestling champions around the world from the 19th century to the present. Pennsylvania: Archeus Communications. p. 389. ISBN 0-9698161-5-4.
  15. ^ a b c d e f Royal Duncan and Gary Will (2006). "Mexico: EMLL NWA World Light Heavyweight Title". Wrestling Title Histories (4th ed.). Archeus Communications. p. 389. ISBN 0-9698161-5-4.
  16. ^ Hornbaker, Tim (2016). "Guerrero, Gory". Legends of Pro Wrestling – 150 years of headlocks, body slams, and piledrivers (Revised ed.). New York, New York: Sports Publishing. p. 107. ISBN 978-1-61321-808-2.