|Product type|| Professional wrestling |
|Produced by|| Vince McMahon |
|Introduced||March 25, 2002 |
July 19, 2016
|Discontinued||August 29, 2011 |
|Related brands|| SmackDown |
|Tagline||Uncut. Uncooked. Uncensored.|
| Executive Director |
(June 11, 2020 – present)
Raw is a brand of the U.S. based professional wrestling promotion WWE. The brand was first established on March 25, 2002 during a special episode of Monday Night Raw and went into effect one week later on April 1. The brand was discontinued for a period between August 2011 and July 2016.
Wrestlers assigned to the Raw brand wrestle predominantly on the eponymous television program; the supplementary show, Main Event ; and on Raw branded or co-branded pay-per-view events and WWE Network events.
The brand has also appeared in the Worlds Collide and Mixed Match Challenge events. During the first brand split, they also competed on their former supplementary show, Heat ; on ECW , under a talent exchange program; and 205 Live , when WWE's cruiserweight division was exclusive to the brand.
In early-to-mid-2002, then World Wrestling Federation (WWF) underwent a process they called the "brand extension".The WWF divided itself into two de facto wrestling promotions with separate rosters, storylines and authority figures. Raw and SmackDown! would host each division, give its name to the division and essentially compete against each other. The split came about as a result of the WWF purchasing their two biggest competitors, World Championship Wrestling (WCW) and Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW); and the subsequent doubling of its roster and championships. The brand extension was publicly announced by Linda McMahon during a telecast of Raw on March 25 and became official the next day.
At the time, this excluded the WWE Undisputed Championship and the original WWE Women's Championship as those WWE titles would be defended on both shows. In September 2002, then WWE Undisputed Champion Brock Lesnar refused to defend the title on Raw, in effect causing his title to become exclusive to SmackDown. The following week on Raw, Raw General Manager Eric Bischoff awarded a newly instated World Heavyweight Championship to Raw's designated number one contender Triple H. Because the WWE Undisputed Championship was now a SmackDown exclusive title, it was no longer referred to as "undisputed". Following this, the original WWE Women's Championship soon became a Raw exclusive title as well. As a result of the brand extension, an annual "draft lottery" was instituted to exchange members of each roster and generally refresh the lineups.
Raw was the home brand for many top WWE stars including Triple H, Ric Flair, Batista, Randy Orton, Chris Benoit, Goldberg, Chris Jericho, Christian, Shawn Michaels, John Cena, Kane, Trish Stratus, Lita and Stacy Keibler.
The 2005 draft was held on the June 6 episode of Raw. The first draft lottery pick was then WWE Champion John Cena, thus moving the WWE Championship to Raw and having two titles on the brand. Eventually, then World Heavyweight Champion Batista was drafted to SmackDown as the last draft pick, leaving only the WWE Championship on Raw. In the 2008 draft lottery, CM Punk got drafted to Raw and then won the World Heavyweight Championship from Edge, who was a SmackDown wrestler. Triple H, who was the WWE Champion at the time, got drafted to SmackDown while Kane, who was the then ECW Champion, got drafted to Raw. After the draft lottery in 2009, the WWE Championship was brought back to Raw when Triple H was drafted from SmackDown while the World Heavyweight Championship was brought back to SmackDown when Edge defeated John Cena to win the title at Backlash.
On the August 29, 2011, episode of Raw, it was announced that performers from Raw and SmackDown were no longer exclusive to their respective brand.Subsequently, championships previously exclusive to one show or the other were available for wrestlers from any show to compete for—this would mark the end of the brand extension as all programming and live events featured the full WWE roster. In a 2013 interview with Advertising Age , Stephanie McMahon explained that WWE's decision to end the brand extension was due to wanting their content to flow across television and online platforms.
On May 25, 2016, it was announced that WWE would be reintroducing the brand split in July, with distinctive rosters for both Raw and SmackDown.On the July 11 episode of Raw, Vince McMahon named Stephanie McMahon the Commissioner of Raw. The draft took place on the live premiere of SmackDown on July 19, with the General Managers of the respective brands hand-picking the wrestlers for their brands. Raw's Commissioner Stephanie McMahon and General Manager Mick Foley created a new championship—the WWE Universal Championship. This championship would be exclusive to the Raw brand, as the WWE World Championship had become exclusive to the SmackDown brand. Clash of Champions was scheduled as the reintroduction of the cruiserweight division and the first Raw-exclusive pay-per-view since January 2007, whereas Elimination Chamber was scheduled as the final Raw-exclusive pay-per-view two years later. Subsequently, this saw all upcoming pay-per-views interbranded after WrestleMania 34.
Initially, the WWE Undisputed Championship and the original WWE Women's Championship were available to both brands.The other championships were exclusive to the brand the champion was a part of. When the brand extension began, Raw received the Intercontinental Championship and the European Championship when their respective holders were drafted. In September 2002, the WWE Undisputed Championship became the WWE Championship again and was moved to SmackDown, prompting Raw General Manager Eric Bischoff to create the World Heavyweight Championship for Raw. Shortly thereafter, Raw became the exclusive brand for the World Tag Team Championship, the Intercontinental Championship and the original WWE Women's Championship.
On July 19, 2016, the brand extension was brought back and for the first time ever the draft was held on SmackDown Live. Raw drafted the WWE Women's Championship, the United States Championship and the WWE Tag Team Championship.With the WWE Championship being defended exclusively on SmackDown, Stephanie McMahon and Mick Foley introduced the WWE Universal Championship to be Raw's world title. At Crown Jewel on October 31, 2019, SmackDown wrestler "The Fiend" Bray Wyatt won the WWE Universal Championship, thus taking the title to SmackDown. On the next night's episode of SmackDown, WWE Champion Brock Lesnar quit SmackDown and moved to Raw, bringing the title with him.
|Championship||Current champion(s)||Reign||Date won||Days held||Location||Notes|
|WWE Championship||Bobby Lashley||1||March 1, 2021||128||St. Petersburg, Florida||Defeated The Miz in a Lumberjack match on Raw .|
|United States Championship||Sheamus||3||April 11, 2021||87||Tampa, Florida||Defeated Riddle at WrestleMania 37 Night 2.|
|Raw Tag Team Championship|| ||AJ Styles and Omos||1||April 10, 2021||88||Tampa, Florida||Defeated The New Day (Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods) at WrestleMania 37 Night 1.|
|Raw Women's Championship||Rhea Ripley||1||April 11, 2021||87||Tampa, Florida||Defeated Asuka at WrestleMania 37 Night 2.|
|Championship||Time on brand|
|WWE European Championship||March 25, 2002 — July 22, 2002|
|WWE Hardcore Championship||March 26, 2002 — August 26, 2002|
|ECW Championship||June 23, 2008 — June 29, 2008|
|World Tag Team Championship||July 29, 2002 — December 13, 2008|
|WWE Women's Championship||September 24, 2002 — April 13, 2009|
|Million Dollar Championship||April 5, 2010 — November 15, 2010|
|World Heavyweight Championship||September 2, 2002 — June 28, 2005|
June 30, 2008 — February 15, 2009
April 5, 2009 — April 26, 2009
|WWE Divas Championship||April 13, 2009 — September 19, 2010|
|WWE Cruiserweight Championship||September 14, 2016 — November 29, 2016|
|WWE Intercontinental Championship||March 25, 2002 — July 30, 2002|
August 25, 2002 — April 13, 2009
April 10, 2017 — April 16, 2019
|WWE Universal Championship||August 21, 2016 — October 31, 2019|
|May 4, 2002||Insurrextion||Wembley Arena||London, England||Triple H vs. The Undertaker|
|June 7, 2003||Insurrextion||Telewest Arena||Newcastle, England||Triple H (c) vs. Kevin Nash in a Street Fight match for the World Heavyweight Championship|
|June 15, 2003||Bad Blood||Compaq Center||Houston, Texas||Triple H (c) vs. Kevin Nash in a Hell in a Cell match for the World Heavyweight Championship with Mick Foley as special guest referee|
|September 21, 2003||Unforgiven||Giant Center||Hershey, Pennsylvania|| Triple H (c) vs. Goldberg in a Title vs. Career match for the World Heavyweight Championship |
Had Triple H been disqualified or counted out, he would lose the title
|December 14, 2003||Armageddon||TD Waterhouse Center||Orlando, Florida||Goldberg (c) vs. Kane vs. Triple H in a Triple threat match for the World Heavyweight Championship|
|April 18, 2004||Backlash||Rexall Place||Edmonton, Alberta, Canada||Chris Benoit (c) vs. Triple H vs. Shawn Michaels in a Triple threat match for the World Heavyweight Championship|
|June 13, 2004||Bad Blood||Nationwide Arena||Columbus, Ohio||Triple H vs. Shawn Michaels in a Hell in a Cell match|
|July 11, 2004||Vengeance||Hartford Civic Center||Hartford, Connecticut||Chris Benoit (c) vs. Triple H for the World Heavyweight Championship|
|September 12, 2004||Unforgiven||Rose Garden Arena||Portland, Oregon||Randy Orton (c) vs. Triple H for the World Heavyweight Championship|
|October 19, 2004||Taboo Tuesday||Bradley Center||Milwaukee, Wisconsin||Randy Orton vs. Ric Flair in a Steel Cage match|
|January 9, 2005||New Year's Revolution||Coliseo de Puerto Rico||San Juan, Puerto Rico||Batista vs. Chris Benoit vs. Chris Jericho vs. Edge vs. Randy Orton vs. Triple H in an Elimination Chamber match for the vacant World Heavyweight Championship with Shawn Michaels as special guest referee|
|May 1, 2005||Backlash||Verizon Wireless Arena||Manchester, New Hampshire||Batista (c) vs. Triple H for the World Heavyweight Championship|
|June 26, 2005||Vengeance||Thomas & Mack Center||Paradise, Nevada||Batista (c) vs. Triple H in a Hell in a Cell match for the World Heavyweight Championship|
|September 18, 2005||Unforgiven||Ford Center||Oklahoma City, Oklahoma||John Cena (c) vs. Kurt Angle for the WWE Championship|
|November 1, 2005||Taboo Tuesday||iPayOne Center||San Diego, California||John Cena (c) vs. Kurt Angle vs. Shawn Michaels in a Triple threat match for the WWE Championship|
|January 8, 2006||New Year's Revolution||Pepsi Arena||Albany, New York|| John Cena (c) vs. Edge for the WWE Championship |
This was Edge's Money in the Bank cash-in match
|April 30, 2006||Backlash||Rupp Arena||Lexington, Kentucky||John Cena (c) vs. Edge vs. Triple H in a Triple threat match for the WWE Championship|
|June 25, 2006||Vengeance||Charlotte Bobcats Arena||Charlotte, North Carolina||D-Generation X (Shawn Michaels and Triple H) vs. The Spirit Squad (Johnny, Kenny, Mikey, Mitch and Nicky) in a 2-on-5 handicap match|
|September 17, 2006||Unforgiven||Air Canada Centre||Toronto, Ontario, Canada||Edge (c) vs. John Cena in a Tables, Ladders, and Chairs match for the WWE Championship|
|November 5, 2006||Cyber Sunday||U.S. Bank Arena||Cincinnati, Ohio||King Booker (c) vs. Big Show vs. John Cena in a Triple threat match for the World Heavyweight Championship|
|January 7, 2007||New Year's Revolution||Kemper Arena||Kansas City, Missouri||John Cena (c) vs. Umaga for the WWE Championship|
|September 25, 2016||Clash of Champions||Bankers Life Fieldhouse||Indianapolis, Indiana||Kevin Owens (c) vs. Seth Rollins for the WWE Universal Championship|
|October 30, 2016||Hell in a Cell||TD Garden||Boston, Massachusetts||Sasha Banks (c) vs. Charlotte Flair in a Hell in a Cell match for the WWE Raw Women's Championship|
|December 18, 2016||Roadblock: End of the Line||PPG Paints Arena||Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania||Kevin Owens (c) vs. Roman Reigns for the WWE Universal Championship|
|March 5, 2017||Fastlane||Bradley Center||Milwaukee, Wisconsin||Kevin Owens (c) vs. Goldberg for the WWE Universal Championship|
|April 30, 2017||Payback||SAP Center||San Jose, California||Braun Strowman vs. Roman Reigns|
|June 4, 2017||Extreme Rules||Royal Farms Arena||Baltimore, Maryland||Bray Wyatt vs. Finn Bálor vs. Roman Reigns vs. Samoa Joe vs. Seth Rollins in an Extreme Rules match to determine the #1 contender for the WWE Universal Championship|
|July 9, 2017||Great Balls of Fire||American Airlines Center||Dallas, Texas||Brock Lesnar (c) vs. Samoa Joe for the WWE Universal Championship|
|September 24, 2017||No Mercy||Staples Center||Los Angeles, California||Brock Lesnar (c) vs. Braun Strowman for the WWE Universal Championship|
|October 22, 2017||TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs||Target Center||Minneapolis, Minnesota||Dean Ambrose, Kurt Angle and Seth Rollins vs. Braun Strowman, Cesaro, Kane, Sheamus and The Miz in a 3-on-5 handicap Tables, Ladders, and Chairs match|
|February 25, 2018||Elimination Chamber||T-Mobile Arena||Paradise, Nevada||Braun Strowman vs. Elias vs. Finn Bálor vs. John Cena vs. Roman Reigns vs. Seth Rollins vs. The Miz in an Elimination Chamber match for a WWE Universal Championship match at WrestleMania 34|
Paul Michael Levesque, better known by the ring name Triple H, is an American professional wrestler, business executive, and actor. He is currently signed to WWE and is the Executive Vice President of Global Talent Strategy Development and COO for WWE. He is also the founder and executive producer of NXT.
WWE Backlash is an American professional wrestling pay-per-view (PPV) event that is produced by WWE, a professional wrestling promotion based in Connecticut. The event was created in April 1999 as an annual PPV event for WWE and was held as the post-WrestleMania PPV until 2009. To coincide with the brand extension, the event was made exclusive to the Raw brand in 2004. In 2007, all PPV events became tri-branded following that year's WrestleMania. Extreme Rules then replaced Backlash in 2010.
The WWE Championship is a world heavyweight championship created and promoted by the American professional wrestling promotion WWE, currently defended on their Raw brand division. It is one of WWE's three world titles, alongside the Universal Championship on SmackDown and the NXT Championship on NXT. The current champion is Bobby Lashley, who is in his first reign.
The World Heavyweight Championship was a professional wrestling world heavyweight championship owned by WWE. It was one of two top championships in WWE from 2002 to 2006 and from 2010 to 2013, complementing the WWE Championship, and one of three top championships from 2006 to 2010 with the addition of the ECW World Heavyweight Championship.
The World Tag Team Championship was the original professional wrestling world tag team championship in the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) promotion, and the promotion's third tag team championship overall. Originally established by the then-World Wide Wrestling Federation (WWWF) on June 3, 1971, it served as the only title for tag teams in the promotion until the then-World Wrestling Federation (WWF) bought World Championship Wrestling (WCW) in March 2001, which added their tag team championship. Both titles were unified in November 2001, retiring WCW's championship and continuing WWF's.
The WWE United States Championship is a professional wrestling championship promoted by the American promotion WWE, currently defended on their Raw brand division. It is one of three secondary championships in WWE, along with the Intercontinental Championship on SmackDown and the North American Championship on NXT. The current champion is Sheamus, who is in his third reign.
WrestleMania XIX was the 19th annual WrestleMania professional wrestling pay-per-view (PPV) event produced by World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE). It took place on March 30, 2003, at Safeco Field in Seattle, Washington. The event was the first WrestleMania held in the state of Washington. A record-breaking 54,097 fans from all fifty states and numerous countries from around the world at Safeco Field resulted in a gate attendance grossing $2.76 million.
The WWE Draft, alternatively called the WWE Superstar Shake-up from 2017 to 2019, is a process used by the American professional wrestling promotion WWE to refresh its rosters between the Raw and SmackDown brands. WWE's former ECW brand also took part (2006–2009) during the first brand split until that brand was disbanded in early 2010. With the second brand split in 2016, wrestlers from NXT (2016–present) and 205 Live (2019–present) are also eligible to be drafted to Raw and SmackDown.
The brand extension is the separation of WWE's talent roster into distinct divisions, or "brands". The strict adherence to the on-screen integrity of the brand split has varied over time.
An undisputed championship is a professional wrestling term for a champion who has obtained all of the major individual championships in his field during his era. The undisputed championship is an extremely rare and prestigious accomplishment.
SummerSlam was the fifteenth annual SummerSlam professional wrestling pay-per-view (PPV) event produced by World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) for their Raw and SmackDown brand divisions. It took place on August 25, 2002, at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Uniondale, New York. With this event, SummerSlam became the first pay-per-view to have events in the three major indoor venues in the New York metropolitan area. Madison Square Garden hosted the event in 1988, 1991, and 1998. The Izod Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey hosted the event in 1989, 1997, and later in 2007.
Vengeance was a professional wrestling pay-per-view (PPV) event produced by World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) for their Raw and SmackDown! brand divisions. It took place on July 21, 2002, at the Joe Louis Arena in Detroit, Michigan. It was the second annual Vengeance event. It was also the first Vengeance held under the WWE name, after the company had been renamed from World Wrestling Federation to WWE in May that year, as well as the first Vengeance held under the first brand extension.
The 2002 King of the Ring was the tenth annual King of the Ring professional wrestling pay-per-view (PPV) event produced by World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) that featured the 16th King of the Ring tournament. It took place on June 23, 2002, at the Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio. It was the first King of the Ring PPV and tournament held under the WWE name after the promotion had been renamed from World Wrestling Federation (WWF) to WWE the previous month. It was also the final King of the Ring pay-per-view event and the only King of the Ring pay-per-view to feature the Raw and SmackDown! brand divisions following the introduction of the brand extension in March. Although it was the final King of the Ring pay-per-view, the King of the Ring tournament has continued to be held periodically. The King of the Ring's June PPV slot was replaced by Bad Blood in 2003.
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