Florida Championship Wrestling
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Florida Championship Wrestling

Florida Championship Wrestling
FoundedJune 26, 2007
DefunctAugust 14, 2012
StyleProfessional wrestling
HeadquartersTampa, Florida
Founder(s)Steve Keirn, WWE
Owner(s)Steve Keirn
WebsiteFCWwrestling.com (inactive)
FCWwrestling.info (inactive)

Florida Championship Wrestling (FCW) was a professional wrestling promotion based on the former National Wrestling Alliance member promotion, Championship Wrestling from Florida, which operated from 1961 until 1987.[1] From October 2007[2][3] to August 2012,[4] the promotion served as the official developmental territory for WWE. In August 2012, WWE re-branded Florida Championship Wrestling into NXT for their developmental territory, with storylines and championships being discontinued.[5]


The promotion was started by Steve Keirn in 2007[6] and became WWE's second developmental territory when they ended their relationship with the Georgia-based Deep South Wrestling in April 2007.[7] It became their sole developmental territory in early 2008 when they ceased affiliation with Ohio Valley Wrestling.[3]

FCW's first logo (2007-2008)

FCW's debut show was on June 26, 2007 at Tampa, Florida's Dallas Bull. A 21-man Battle Royal was held during the show, to crown the first ever FCW Southern Heavyweight Champion.[8] The next year, the Florida Heavyweight Championship was introduced,[9] with Jake Hager becoming the first champion at a February 15 show after surviving a Battle Royal and defeating Ted DiBiase, Jr..[10] The Florida Tag Team Championship was also introduced in February, with the Puerto Rican Nightmares (Eddie Colón and Eric Pérez) beating Steven Lewington and Heath Miller to win it in the finals of a one night tournament.[11] The singles titles were later unified, keeping the "Florida Heavyweight" name and championship.[12]

On July 7, 2008, WWE confirmed that FCW was based on the original independent Championship Wrestling from Florida promotion, which operated from 1961 until 1987.[1] The program's ending consisted of various clips from the ending of CWF's programs, featuring Gordon Solie's classic sign-off line "So long from the Sunshine State", accompanied by Solie winking one of his eyes and waving two fingers upward.

On July 17, 2008, the FCW Arena was officially opened,[13] and included a taping of the debut episode of FCW TV.[14]

On March 20, 2012, it was reported that WWE would cease operation at Florida Championship Wrestling; however, this statement was later refuted after Steve Keirn denied the claim.[15] WWE Executive Vice President of Talent and Live Events, Triple H, stated WWE will be ramping up their development system, not shutting it down.[16]

In August 2012, WWE dropped the FCW name, deactivated the titles, and began running all of its developmental events and operations under the "NXT Wrestling" banner. WWE had been using the NXT name for a television program featuring rookies from FCW competing to become WWE main roster wrestlers, though the reality television aspects of the show had been dropped earlier in 2012; WWE NXT now serves as the primary television program for the NXT Wrestling promotion.[5]

Championships and accomplishments

Championship Notes
Queen of FCW A crown was held by the title holder, rather than a championship belt that is primarily used in professional wrestling.
Florida Heavyweight Championship Contested for in their heavyweight division
Florida Tag Team Championship Contested for in the tag team division
Divas Championship Contested for in the women's division
Jack Brisco 15 Championship Contested in 15-minute Iron Man matches
Southern Heavyweight Championship Retired after being unified with the Florida Heavyweight Championship

Notable alumni

The following is a list of notable FCW alumni that have gone on to accomplished a name for themselves on the main roster of WWE.

Ring name Real name
AJ Lee April Brooks[17]
Aksana ?ivil? Raudonien?[18]
Alberto Del Rio José Rodríguez[19]
Alex Riley Kevin Kiley Jr.[20]
Alicia Fox Victoria Crawford[21]
Cesaro Claudio Castagnoli[22]
Brad Maddox Tyler Kluttz[23]
Brie Bella Brianna Danielson[24]
Brodus Clay George Murdoch[25]
Big E Ettore Ewen[26]
Camacho Tevita Fifita[27]
Cameron Ariane Andrew[28]
Curt Hawkins Brian Myers[29]
Curtis Axel Joseph Hennig[30]
Damien Sandow Aron Haddad[31]
Daniel Bryan Bryan Danielson[32]
Darren Young Frederick Rosser III[33]
David Otunga David Otunga Sr.[34]
Dean Ambrose Jonathan Good[35]
Dolph Ziggler Nicholas Nemeth[36]
Drew McIntyre Andrew Galloway[37]
Epico Orlando Colón[38]
Evan Bourne Matthew Korklan[39]
Ezekiel Jackson Rycklon Stephens[40]
Fandango Curtis Hussey[41]
Heath Slater Heath Miller[42]
Jack Swagger Donald Hager Jr.[43]
Jason Jordan Nathan Everhart
Jey Uso Joshua Fatu[44]
Jimmy Uso Jonathan Fatu[45]
Jinder Mahal Yuvraj Dhesi[46]
Justin Gabriel Paul Lloyd Jr.[47]
Kaitlyn Celeste Bonin[48]
Kofi Kingston Kofi Sarkodie-Mensah[49]
Michael Tarver Tyrone Evans
Naomi Trinity Fatu[50]
Natalya Natalie Neidhart[51]
Nikki Bella Stephanie Garcia-Colace[52]
Paige Saraya-Jade Bevis[53]
Primo Colón Edwin Colón[54]
Ricardo Rodriguez Jesús Rodríguez[55]
Richie Steamboat Richard Blood Jr.[56]
Roman Reigns Leati Anoa?i[57]
Rosa Mendes Milena Roucka[58]
Rusev Miroslav Barnyashev
Ryback Ryback Reeves[59]
Serena Deeb Serena Deeb
Seth Rollins Colby Lopez[60]
Sin Cara Jorge Arias[61]
Sheamus Stephen Farrelly[62]
Summer Rae Danielle Moinet
Tamina Snuka Sarona Snuka-Polamalu[63]
Ted DiBiase Jr. Theodore DiBiase Jr.[64]
Titus O'Neil Thaddeus Bullard Sr.[65]
Tiffany Taryn Terrell
Tyler Reks Gabriel Tuft[66]
Tyler Breeze Mattias Clement
Tyson Kidd Theodore Wilson[67]
Wade Barrett Stuart Bennett[68]
Yoshi Tatsu Naofumi Yamamoto[69]


  1. ^ a b "Florida Championship Wrestling unveils new arena in Tampa, Fla". WWE. July 7, 2008. Retrieved 2008. From the birth of the promotion in the 1960s, until 1987, "Florida Championship Wrestling" was regarded as one of the premier wrestling territories in the country...Florida Championship Wrestling is now an official developmental territory of World Wrestling Entertainment. FCW and the WWE are proud to bring back Florida Championship Wrestling.
  2. ^ "About page". Florida Championship Wrestling. Archived from the original on October 13, 2007. Retrieved 2007.
  3. ^ a b "WWE Ceases affiliation with Ohio Valley Wrestling". WWE. February 6, 2008. Archived from the original on February 10, 2008. Retrieved 2008.
  4. ^ "About Us". Florida Championship Wrestling. Archived from the original on August 5, 2012. Retrieved 2011.
  5. ^ a b "WWE News: FCW name being phased out". Wrestling Observer. Retrieved 2012.
  6. ^ Fox, Geoff (September 8, 2007). "Area Wrestling Will Continue Under A New State Banner". The Tampa Tribune. Archived from the original on December 20, 2008. Retrieved 2018.
  7. ^ "WWE ends relationship with DSW". WWE. Retrieved 2007.
  8. ^ "FCW 2007 results". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved 2007.
  9. ^ Wojcik, Alan J. "Results from Florida on 2/5". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved 2008.
  10. ^ Wojcik, Alan J. "Results from Tampa on 2/15". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved 2008.
  11. ^ Wojcik, Alan J. "Results from Florida on 2/23". Online World of Wrestling. Archived from the original on May 28, 2009. Retrieved 2008.
  12. ^ "FCW Southern Heavyweight Title". Wrestling-Titles. Archived from the original on February 26, 2008. Retrieved 2008.
  13. ^ "FCW New Arena Debut Photo Gallery: July 17, 2008". WWE. Retrieved 2019.
  14. ^ "Florida Championship Wrestling debuts new arena, Web site & TV studio". WWE. Retrieved 2019.
  15. ^ Gray, Richard. "Breaking News - Steve Keirn Says There Is "No Truth" To FCW Shutting Down Rumor". Wrestling World News. Retrieved 2012.
  16. ^ "WWE EVP Triple H refutes false reports of FCW's closing". WWE. Retrieved 2019.
  17. ^ "April Jeanette". IMDB. Retrieved 2011.
  18. ^ "?ivil? Raudonien?". Genickbruch.com. Retrieved 2010.
  19. ^ "Alberto Rodríguez". Gerweck.net. Retrieved 2010.
  20. ^ "Kevin Kiley". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  21. ^ "Victoria Crawford". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  22. ^ "Antonio Cesaro". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  23. ^ "Brad Maddox". Gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  24. ^ "Brie Bella". Gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  25. ^ "George Murdoch". Gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  26. ^ "Big E. Langston". Gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  27. ^ "Camacho". Gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  28. ^ "Ariane Andrew". Genickbruch.com. Retrieved 2012.
  29. ^ "Bryan Myers". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  30. ^ "Joseph Hennig". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  31. ^ "Aaron Haddad". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  32. ^ "Bryan Danielson". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  33. ^ "Darren Young". Gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  34. ^ "David Otunga". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  35. ^ "Jon Moxley". Gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  36. ^ "Nicholas Nemeth". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  37. ^ "Drew Galloway". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  38. ^ "Orlando Colón". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  39. ^ "Matthew Korklan". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  40. ^ "Ryklon Stephens". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  41. ^ "Fandango". Gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  42. ^ "Heath Miller". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  43. ^ "Jacob Hager". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  44. ^ "Joshua Fatu". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  45. ^ "Jonathon Fatu". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  46. ^ "Yuvraj Dhesi". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  47. ^ "Paul Lloyd, Jr". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  48. ^ "Celeste Bonin". Gerweck.net. Retrieved 2010.
  49. ^ "Kofi Sarkodie-Mensah". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  50. ^ "Trinity McCray". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved 2010.
  51. ^ "Natalie Neidhart". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  52. ^ "Nikki Bella". Gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  53. ^ "Saraya-Jade Bevis". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2014.
  54. ^ "Edwin Colón". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  55. ^ "Jesús Rodríguez". Genickbruch.com. Retrieved 2010.
  56. ^ "Richard Blood Jr". Onlineworldofwrestling.com. Retrieved 2015.
  57. ^ "Leati Anoa'i". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  58. ^ "Milena Roucka". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  59. ^ "Ryan Reeves". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  60. ^ "Tyler Black". Gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  61. ^ "Jorge Arias". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  62. ^ "Stephen Farrelly". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  63. ^ "Sarona Reiher". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  64. ^ "Theodore DiBiase, Jr". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  65. ^ "Thaddeus Bullard". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  66. ^ "Gabriel Tuft". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.
  67. ^ "Theodore Wilson". Gerweck.net. Retrieved 2012.
  68. ^ "Stuart Bennett". Gerweck.net. Retrieved 2012.
  69. ^ "Naofumi Yamamoto". gerweck.net. Retrieved 2013.

External links

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