On May 29th, 2022, CM Punk defeated Hangman Adam Page at Double Or Nothing to become the AEW World Champion. Less than a week later, the star was forced to announce he would be taking time off due to injury, however, he would remain champion.
This led to a tournament to crown the first-ever Interim AEW World Champion, who would go on to face Punk to determine the one true champion once he was cleared to compete again.
Since then, AEW has used the concept of interim title holders on several occasions when champions have been unable to compete due to injury. Currently, AEW World Women’s Champion Thunder Rosa is on the shelf, and Jamie Hayter is the interim title-holder until the Mexican star returns.
Shawn Spears disagrees with the use of interim championships
Ever since Jon Moxley became the first Interim AEW World Champion, there has been debate among fans and wrestlers about whether the concept is a good idea. Moxley himself spent much of his run claiming he was simply the World Champion with no ‘Interim’ about it.
Others point to the fact that interim titles are a staple of combat sports such as boxing and MMA.
Now, one of the early stars of AEW has weighed in on the situation, with Shawn Spears taking to social media to make his displeasure with the idea known. Spears claims it’s “bulls**t” and “You’re either champion or you’re not”.
“This “interim” stuff is bullshit.
“You’re either the Champion, or you’re not.”
This “interim” stuff is bullshit.
You’re either the Champion, or you’re not.
— Shawn Spears™️ (@ShawnSpears) November 20, 2022
Interim AEW World Women’s Championship changed hands at AEW Full Gear
Toni Storm went into Full Gear as the Interim AEW Women’s Champion but despite having had a dominant run so far, she hit a roadblock in the form of Jamie Hayter.
Things got off to a bad start for the Australian star as the New Jersey crowd turned on her in favour of Hayter. While the pair started off with a traditional wrestling match, things soon degenerated into a hard-hitting brawl.
After being knocked to the outside, Storm was attacked by Hayer’s ally, Britt Baker, who hit her with a Curb Stomp on the belt. Back in the ring, Hayter rammed Storm into an exposed turnbuckle before following up with Hayter-Ade to capture the interim title.