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A few years ago when it was first being rumored that WWE was going to introduce Women's Tag Team Championships, I wasn't that enthusiastic about it. Not because I thought that the women didn't deserve an additional title, but because I knew that WWE already had too many championships, and even with their incredible amount of programming per week, WWE would be unable to produce consistent, meaningful title matches.
This isn't just a problem for the new tag titles, it is a problem for nearly every championship in the company. Due to scattershot booking, WWE struggles to produce compelling angles and characters that can set up meaningful title matches. That leads to the titles meaning less and less, to the point that nobody really cares who the champions are.
Clash of Champions, where the gimmick is that every title on the main roster is to be defended (shouldn't that be every PPV anyway?) hammers that point home. With the exception of a couple of matches, most of the card feels like a bunch of okay, standard matches that would take place on RAW or SmackDown, even though they all have real stakes with the titles being on the line.
The dual world champions is part of the issue, a situation where most people in WWE would probably say that they would prefer one world champion, but due to the nature of having a brand split and wanting a "world title" on each of the two touring groups, WWE can't seem to get away from the need for two titles. Obviously, if you have two "world champions" you really have none; boxing killed a lot of its value when it created too many world championships that were all supposed to be equal, and the same is happening in WWE.
Confounding the issue is that WWE chose the Universal Championship to be the main title on RAW, while moving the WWE Championship to SmackDown. So the title with all of the prestige and lineage is on the B show, while the world title on the A-show that closes most major PPVs and is presented to the public as being the most important title; is an awkward red belt with no real history or lineage that fans care about.
The world titles are still important in the sense that it does matter who holds the titles; but over time they have been devalued from where they (or more accurately, it) once was. Realistically the solution would be to make one world title again, but with the roster set to be split again with a new draft for the new TV deals in October, I doubt that is happening any time soon.
The two mid-card titles, The United States Championship and The Intercontinental Championship, have arguably suffered the most due to WWE's booking. Both titles have rich legacies that date back decades, but over the years the belts have been treated as just props with almost no meaning. I always find it humorous when the announcers talk about the history of either title and mention all the past greats who have won it, and they never mention anyone from the past ten years. The fact is that over the past ten years, except for a brief period when John Cena was the US Champion, it hasn't mattered at all who the champion(s) was.
If you think about it, are the US or IC titles any different than the 24/7 Championship? Sure, it isn't passed around on a daily basis, but overall who the champion is always seems to be irrelevant because there are never any storylines built around who the champion is. At one point, say 2012, I could have told you every single person that was the Intercontinental Champion at some point or another. Today, I couldn't tell you who was champion just this year. The meaning and purpose of either title; as a way to prime future stars for a world title run, has been replaced by the necessity to round out PPV cards and get some screen time for talent that WWE doesn't have any real plans for at the moment.
The tag titles are another story. Rollins and Strowman being the tag champs and defending the titles together before their title match cheapens the titles. Instead of the titles being valued as prized possessions in their own right, they are being used as a prop to set up the main event; meaning that the RAW Tag Team Championship match on Sunday is probably going to be about as useful as a backstage segment.
On the SmackDown side, The New Day defend the titles against The Revival. Between The New Day, The Revival, Gallows and Anderson, The Usos, Heavy Machinery and hopefully at some point, The Viking Raiders or The Authors of Pain, WWE has a good collection of tag teams that are reasonably over. I think the problem lately has been constant shifting of the belts. The RAW and SmackDown titles each have already changed hands five times in 2019. The angles and feuds surrounding the titles seem to only revolve around the fact that the titles have been won or lost; and when you have veteran teams like The New Day and The Usos who have each won the titles a bunch of times, it is hard to keep things fresh and exciting.
If you are looking for a solution to these problems, look no further than both the SmackDown and RAW women's title matches. Unlike the other titles, you can't argue and say that the women's titles have been treated better in the past. However, the matches stand out at Clash of Champions because they are major angles culminating in title matches; with Sasha Banks returning to face her rival Lynch, and Bayley turning heel and facing Charlotte. They are not just title matches for the sake of title matches, they are real angles with stakes and it actually matters who wins each match. If WWE could get the rest of the card up to speed with programs like that, they would be in much better shape.
Must Watch Matches
WALTER vs Tyler Bate: ****3/4 - NXT UK TakeOver Cardiff
Hiroshi Tanahashi vs Zack Sabre Jr.: **** - NJPW Royal Quest
Kazuchika Okada vs Minoru Suzuki: ****1/2 - NJPW Royal Quest