The 5 Most Contradictory Rules in WWE History - Rules Need Not Apply | Smark Out Moment

The 5 Most Contradictory Rules in WWE History - Rules Need Not Apply

Posted by Ross K. Foad Saturday, March 21, 2015
Like any sport, professional wrestling has a set of rules. While it may seem trivial to analyze and dissect a promotion's own set in the same fashion one as one would for the NFL or NBA, it doesn't make it any less fun to do!

So, with that being said, today we are going to examine five of the strangest rules in WWE history that only seem to apply when the company feels like it.

1) Championships can only exchange hands by pinfall or submission.

WWE superstar Ted DiBiase moneyIn 1987, Ted DiBiase attempted to buy the WWF Championship from Hulk Hogan. Hogan refused his offer and told DiBiase that he would have to defeat him in the ring if he wanted the belt. Undeterred, the scheming Million Dollar Man paid Andre the Giant to win the belt for him.

Andre would go on to win the tile off Hogan on the February 5, 1988 edition of The Main Event, only to immediately vacate the title — which he bizarrely called "the World Tag Team championship"— to DiBiase.

But the euphoria was short-lived for Ted. He was later stripped of the title by then WWF president Jack Tunney, who declared it was in "the WWF rulebook" that a title cannot be awarded in this way, thus voiding DiBiase as ever having been WWF champion. It seems there actually are some things that money cannot buy.

However, one only needs to fast-forward a decade or so to discover there are numerous examples which obliterate this rules standing.

These include:
  • On the November 2nd 1998 edition of Raw, Mankind was awarded and declared the 1st ever Hardcore Champion holder by Vince McMahon
  • At SummerSlam 1999, thanks to an assist by Mark Henry, Jeff Jarrett defeated D'lo Brown for the European and Intercontinental titles. He would later award Henry the European belt by way of thanks.
  • On May 6 2000, at the British pay-per-view Insurrextion, Crash Holly issued an open challenge to any Englishman who thought themselves tough enough to fight him. This brought out a returning British Bulldog, who promptly pinned Crash for his Hardcore Championship. However, his title reign was exceedingly short-lived, for before he even made it back to Gorilla, he vacated the title and awarded it to Al Snow.
Sorry, Ted...had you pulled your ruse a decade on, "everything has a price" probably could have been applied!

2) A wrestler cannot hold two titles simultaneously.

Triple H Austin Tag Team Title Intercontinental Backlash Undertaker In 1990, The Ultimate Warrior won the WWF World Heavyweight Champion from Hulk Hogan at WrestleMania VI. Due to also holding the Intercontinental Championship, he would vacate the midcard title under the fabled "WWF Rulebook" ruling that a wrestler cannot hold two titles at once.

But, as we know, history has provided us with numerous duel title-holders. Some examples include Kurt Angle's Euro-Continental reign, The Miz's United States and Unified Tag Team Title run, and WWF Heavyweight/Tag Team Champions combos like Steve Austin. We even had cross-promotional holders during the Invasion, with many wrestlers holding titles from WWF and WCW.

Oddly enough, it did come back into concession last year, when Paige became both NXT Women's Champion and WWE Diva's Champion. She was a duel champion for a short while, but was later asked by William Regal to vacate her prized NXT title.

A reinforcement of the archaic rule? Or is there truth to the rumour Vince does not like NXT belts being on the WWE shows after all.

3) Size Matters.

El Torito Fandago Los Matadores Tag Team WWE
It is a standing wrestling law that transcends country and promotion, but should a referee witness outside interference by a non match participant, the match will end in disqualification.

However, in the wacky world of WWE, it would appear there is a height limit on this ruling. In recent years, referees have observed the pint-sized El Torito and Hornswoggle attack wrestlers during matches, only to do nothing about it whatsoever.

What a load of bull.

4) A Champion must actively defend a title.

WWE superstar Daniel Bryan injured wrestler
Not long after his WrestleMania 30 Heavyweight Title win, Daniel Bryan suffered a neck injury resulting in the stripping of his title. This was on the grounds that he would be unable to defend it until his recovery. The vacated title was later won by Brock Lesnar, who despite being able to compete has since defended it a grand total of two times.

Do not even get me started on Dean Ambrose's United States Championship reign.

5) Rematch Clause

When a champion loses his/her title, this clause may be invoked to procure a title rematch. This supposed rule is often ignored, and only used when WWE feels like it to help continue a feud or eat up an extra pay-per-view's worth of time before a new challenger can be built up. If you were a forgettable champion, then forget WWE allowing you to use this one.

Can you think of any more flakey WWE rules? Leave a comment below and let us know.

Ross K Foad is a writer, actor, YouTuber and founder of the Sherlock Holmes website No Place Like Holmes. He has been a published writer since age 13 with a comic strip in a regional newspaper and a wrestling fan since the Rock 'n' Wrestling era. You can follow him on Twitter


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