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Chris Jericho Wasn’t Originally Scheduled To Become The Undisputed Champion, Original Plan Revealed

Chris Jericho WWF Undisputed Champion 2001 2002

• ON THIS DAY IN WWF HISTORY (January 12, 1997) – WWF Superstars

On this day in 1997, the World Wrestling Federation aired an episode of their weekly TV show ‘WWF Superstars’.

This episode was pre-taped at the Ocean Center in Daytona Beach, Florida and featured matches & storyline segments on the road to the ‘WWF Royal Rumble 1997’ PPV.

Here’s the card:

– Goldust vs. The Executioner (The Executioner’s last TV appearance)

– Hector Garza vs. T.L. Hopper

– Rocky Maivia vs. Dr. X (Tom Prichard)

– Bret Hart vs. The Sultan

• Chris Jericho Wasn’t Originally Scheduled To Become The Undisputed Champion, Original Plan Revealed

During a recent interview with Chris Van Vliet, WWE Hall of Famer Kurt Angle revealed that Vince McMahon was originally going to book him to become the first-ever Undisputed Champion in 2001.

However, Vince soon realized that Chris Jericho would benefit more from becoming the Undisputed Champion and changed the plan.

Below is what Angle said:

“Vince McMahon came to me two weeks prior and said ‘We’re going to give you the strap again. You’re going to be the Undisputed Champion.’

I thought that was pretty cool, considering that the pool was Chris Jericho, The Rock, and Austin. Those three are the best of all time. I knew going into it, I was going to win.

Five days before (the PPV), Vince gives me a call and says ‘I really want to give it to Jericho. I really think he could benefit from it.’ I agreed. If anybody needs it and can run with it, it would be Chris Jericho.

I was very honored that Vince had enough respect for me to tell me about the switch.

For Jericho, it benefitted him. It put him in that title picture and main event. Chris was always up there. He was such an important factor in the company because he could make anyone look good. He was one of our supported assets.

I have more respect for him today than I ever did before. I can’t believe the things he can do now.”

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