It was perhaps not the most creative solution, but last night on Raw WWE solved the problems it had created for itself having drafted SmackDown Tag Team Champions New Day to Raw and Raw Tag Team Champions Street Profits to SmackDown.
Many fans were hoping for a unification match between the two teams to create one definitive set of tag champions – bringing the men’s tag division in line with the women’s, which has one set of belts defended across multiple brands – but it was not to be.
Instead, Street Profits and New Day exchanged their belts in a backstage segment under instruction from Adam Pearce, who declared a simple trade the most sensible solution to the issue.
Sensible it might have been, but it was certainly not simple.
The decision was met with dismay from title history aficionados everywhere, as the lineage of the two sets of straps becomes mind-meltingly confusing.
To clarify, New Day are now the Raw Tag Team Champions but the titles they are wearing do not have the lineage of the SmackDown Tag Team Titles they held before. Rather, WWE is considering their reign to have started last night on Raw and the lineage of the belts they are wearing dates back to 2002.
Similarly, Street Profits’ lengthy run as champions is over and has been reset to start again last night at the time of the trade. So the titles they have now are the ones established in 2016 when Heath Slater and Rhyno defeated the Usos to win the newly-created belts.
Confused? Yes, so are we.
Essentially, both sets of belts were vacated last night and New Day and Street Profits were “awarded” the titles for the brands they now represent.
That clears that up then.