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Bruce Prichard on Why WWE Unified the World Titles in 2001, How a Healthy Triple H Would Have Changed Things

August 13, 2019 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
Chris Jericho Undisputed Champion 2001

– Speaking on the latest Something to Wrestling, Bruce Prichard looked back on WWE’s decision to unify the world titles in 2001. In 2001 following the Invasion storyline, the WCW Championship was rechristened the World Championship and was running alongside the WWF Championship. The two titles were announced to be unified at Vengeance in 2001 of that year, which would see a four-man tournament set between Chris Jericho, The Rock, Steve Austin and Kurt Angle. Jericho would upset The Rock for the WCW Championship, then go on to beat Austin in the main event to unify the titles.

Speaking on the podcast, Prichard recalled that the decision was done because Triple H was out due to his quadriceps injury that he suffered in May, while Chris Benoit was out due to a serious neck injury. He speculated that the unification may not have even been necessary of those injuries weren’t in play.

Highlights from the discussion, and the full podcast, are below:

On the reasoning behind the tournament: “I think that when we got to this point, it was the point of ‘All right, I think it’s a little confusing with the two different World Championships, if you will,’ and the need and desire to get to one championship. That was really the intent. But again, had we had a healthy Triple H, and had a few more players that I don’t know that things would have been a little bit different at that time. So it was looking at really shaking things up, and utilizing the talent that we had, but also trying to be as unpredictable as we possibly could as well.”

On if the tournament roster would have been the same if Triple H had been healthy and Benoit was available: “I think it would look a whole lot different if we had all those guys who were healthy and able to go … I don’t know that we would have even been in the spot of unifying the championships at that point. There’s so many ‘ifs’ to that, that that one’s hard to answer because the whole summer, the whole everything would have been different … and maybe would wouldn’t have had the Invasion be the way that it was. So there were a lot of outside obstacles that would have made all of that look a whole lot different.”

If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Something to Wrestle with a h/t to 411mania.com for the transcription.