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What could the future of King of the Ring look like in the Triple H era?

By 1 June 2024June 3rd, 2024News

By Steven Rhodes

The King of the Ring tournament has existed for almost 40 years and has taken many forms during that time. Now with Triple H in control of WWE and the return of its own Premium Live Event what new changes could be expected going forward?

A brief history:

The first King of the Ring tournament was won by Don Muraco in 1985 during a house show, the event would remain on untelevised events until the first King of the Ring pay-per-view in 1993. Notable winners during the house show period include Harley Race, Randy Savage and Bret Hart. Hart would also go on to win the aforementioned 1993 event making him the only two-time King of the Ring winner.

Bret Hart following his King of the Ring victory – Image WWE

The event would be an annual installment for the company, taking place every June until 2002. Although the pay-per-view format was only around for 9 years the event still spanned the new generation era, the attitude era and the beginning of the ruthless aggression era. Notable winners in that time include the infamous King Mabel, ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin who would cut his iconic Austin 3:16 promo upon winning, Triple H himself, Kurt Angle and Edge.

The tournament was brought back exclusively to Smackdown in 2006 and brought back again for Raw in both 2008 and 2010. King of the Ring also returned as a network special in 2015 and was held across both Raw and Smackdown in 2019. In 2021, the tournament would also take place across Raw and Smackdown; however, the finals would be at the Crown Jewel pay-per-view. This tournament would also run alongside the ‘Queens Crown’ tournament now renamed as Queen of the Ring.


The future of King of the Ring

Much has changed since Triple H took over WWE and many changes are still to come so why would King of the Ring be any different. These are changes which Triple H could make to have the event feel more important and make the winners look more impressive.

Title shot at SummerSlam:

Brock Lesnar challenging The Rock at SummerSlam 2002 following his King of the Ring victory – Image: WWE

The last King of the Ring pay-per-view in 2002 had one interesting change which was only seen on this one occasion. That change was to have the winner (Brock Lesnar) be rewarded with a title shot at SummerSlam for winning the tournament.

This would give big names a reason to compete for the crown and make the event feel more important. The Royal Rumble gives the winner a title shot at WrestleMania, why shouldn’t SummerSlam have an equivalent. Although the title shot wouldn’t have to be at SummerSlam just the concept of the winner getting a title shot at an upcoming event would be a big boost for the concept.

Have bigger names:

Randy Orton and AJ Styles opening match in the King of the Ring tournament – Image: WWE

Another way to make it feel like something top stars would want to win is by having top stars compete in the tournament. Triple H might have already started this by having names like Randy Orton and AJ Styles already competing this time around.

Not every winner has to wear a crown:

‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin cutting his iconic Austin 3:16 promo following his King of the Ring victory – Image: WWE

Historically not every King of the Ring winner picked up the crown and scepter, however the last 7 Kings and Queens have. The truth is that the gimmick just doesn’t fit some wrestlers, I mean just imagine King Lesnar or King Austin. This is a change I very much see happening with the remaining men in the tournament being Gunther, Randy Orton and Tama Tonga. None of those wrestlers would really suit a king gimmick especially not the odds on favourite Gunther.