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This Day in Pro Wrestling History (July 20)

51 years ago today, Verne Gagne defeated The Crusher in Minneapolis, Minnesota to win the AWA World Heavyweight Championship for the fourth time.

41 years ago today, Jack Brisco defeated Harley Race in Houston, Texas to win the NWA World Heavyweight Championship. At the time of his defeat, Race's first run as NWA world champion was the shortest official world title reign in NWA history.

22 years ago today, The Natural Disasters (Earthquake & Typhoon) defeated Money Inc. (Ted Dibiase & IRS) in Worcester, Massachusetts to win the WWF World Tag Team Championship. The title changed hands at a house show for the second straight time; in fact, from February 1992 to September 1993, five of the six tag title changes happened at house shows (eight of ten if you extend it to April 1994).

16 years ago today, three new champions are crowned on the same night: two on Nitro, and one on RAW.

On Nitro, Scott Hall & The Giant defeated Sting & Kevin Nash to win the WCW World Tag Team Championship. In the main event, Bret Hart defeated Diamond Dallas Page to win the vacated WCW United States Championship. The title was vacated when Goldberg won the WCW World Heavyweight Championship earlier in the month.

On RAW, D-Lo Brown defeated Triple H to win the WWF European Championship.

6 years ago today was WWE's Great American Bash (WWE Network link) from the Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, NY. This was the final WWE PPV to have a TV-14 rating, as the company would transition to a PG rating the next month. The event also featured the first ever WWE Divas Championship match. 12,454 were in attendance, with 273,000 homes watching on PPV, up from 230,000 for 2007's edition. In a side note, two people were arrested for burglary (one of the two was also charged with assault) when they attempted to steal commemorative chairs from the show. One of the assailants hit a WWE employee with a bottle and bit him trying to stop the theft.

  • In a preshow dark match, Umaga defeated Mr. Kennedy.
  • Curt Hawkins and Zack Ryder defeated John Morrison and The Miz, Jesse and Festus, and Finlay and Hornswoggle in a Fatal Four-Way match to win the WWE Tag Team Championship.
  • Shelton Benjamin defeated Matt Hardy to win the WWE United States Championship.
  • Mark Henry defeated Tommy Dreamer to retain the ECW Championship.
  • Chris Jericho defeated Shawn Michaels.
  • Michelle McCool defeated Natalya to become the first WWE Divas Champion.
  • CM Punk and Batista went to a double disqualification for the World Heavyweight Championship.
  • John "Bradshaw" Layfield defeated John Cena in a New York City Parking Lot Brawl.
  • Triple H defeated Edge to retain the WWE Championship.

2 years ago today, Shine Wrestling was born. The promotion held their first event at the Orpheum in Ybor City, Florida, a suburb of Tampa.

  • Veda Scott defeated Kimberly.
  • Santana defeated Tina San Antonio.
  • Made In Sin (Taylor Made & Allysin Kay) defeated The West Coast Connection (Tracy Taylor & Su Yung).
  • Christina Von Eerie defeated Cherry Bomb.
  • Reby Sky defeated Jayme Jameson.
  • Mercedes Martinez defeated Leva Bates.
  • Rain defeated Nikki Roxx.
  • Jazz defeated Sara Del Rey.

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