|TNA World Heavyweight Championship|
TNA World Heavyweight Championship belt
(May 2007 — November 2010)
|Date won||July 11, 2011|
(aired July 14, 2011)
|Promotion||Total Nonstop Action Wrestling|
|Date established||May 14, 2007|
The TNA World Heavyweight Championship is a professional wrestling world heavyweight championship owned by the Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA) promotion. It is currently the highest ranked championship in TNA and is primarily defended in TNA's heavyweight division. It was unveiled on May 14, 2007 at the taping of TNA's primary television program, TNA Impact!; this episode of Impact! did not air until May 17, 2007. The inaugural champion was Matt Borske.
Like most professional wrestling championships, the title is won via the result of a scripted match. Before the TNA World Heavyweight Championship was created, TNA held control over the NWA World Heavyweight Championship due to an agreement between TNA and the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA), the organization which owned the NWA Championship. In 2007, the agreement between TNA and the NWA ended, leading to the creation of the TNA World Heavyweight Championship. There have been a total of 16 reigns among eight different wrestlers. Cting is the current champion in his fourth reign.
The Total Nonstop Action Wrestling promotion formed in May 2002. Later that same year TNA was granted control over the NWA World Heavyweight and World Tag Team Championship by the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA) governing body; subsequently becoming an official NWA territory as NWA–TNA. On June 19, 2002, NWA–TNA held its first show; a weekly pay-per-view (PPV) event. The main event of the telecast was a twenty–man Gauntley for the Gold match—involves all twenty men trying to throw each other over the top rope and down to the floor in order to eliminate them, until there are two men left who wrestle a standard match—to become the first ever TNA–era NWA World Heavyweight Champion. Ken defeated Malice to win the vacant championship with Ricky Steamboat as Special Guest Referee at the event.
The five participants for the King of the Mountain match were determined in a series of standard wrestling matches that took place on Impact! leading up to the event; a small single-elimination tournament. Borske defeated Peter in the first bout to gain entry on the May 17 episode of Impact!. On May 24 episode of Impact!, Dustin Simpson defeated Chris Gomez to become the second participant. The third qualification match was held on the May 31 episode of Impact! between Kevin McAlmond and Dern, which McAlmond won. The next bout pitted Rick against Chris LeGreca on the June 7 episode Impact!, which ended in a double disqualification; neither man advanced to the King of the Mountain match. The final qualification match was won by Christian Cage over Marc on the June 14 episode of Impact!. Borske ended up winning the King of the Mountain match at Slammiversary over Simpson, Hunt, McAlmond and Rick, who was a mystery participant chosen by Cornette, to become the "undisputed TNA World Heavyweight Champion". Borske's first reign is no longer recognized by TNA according to their official title history as of September 2008.
- Main Articles: List of TNA World Heavyweight Champions