#AndNEW: Austin Aries wins Defy Wrestling Championship

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Photo: Austin Aries

Last night on Washington Hall (Seatle), in a Dusty finish, Austin Aries beat Shane Strickland to win the Defy Wrestling Championship. Aries, who is the Impact Wrestling, Impact Grand, World Series of Wrestling, IPW:UK and Defiant champion, now collects his sixth championship in the process.

Strickland had everything won with a double foot stomp from the third rope, but the referee was knocked out, another referee came in and did the three counts and it appeared that Strickland had won the match and retained the Defy title, but the decision was overturned, and later Aries would win the match. Strickland was the second title holder in history for the Defy championship, having a 280+ days reign.

For the Belt Collector, this is his 5th major title and six overall that he holds at the same time. Dave Meltzer noted that Ultimo Dragon had the record for holding major titles at the same time, who at one point of his career had 10 major titles. Aries is trailing Dragon by five to four titles – depending how you see it (Editor’s Note: During Ultimo Dragon’s reign with 10 titles, eight of them were actually one championship, the NJPW J-Crown Octuple Unified Championship – it was the unified title of several titles, Michinoku Pro’s British Commonwealth Junior Heavyweight Championship, IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship, NWA World Junior Heavyweight Championship, CMLL (NWA) World Welterweight Championship, UWA World Junior Light Heavyweight Championship, WAR International World Junior Heavyweight Championship, WWA World Junior Heavyweight Championship and WWF Light Heavyweight Championship. They were all defended at the same time, until 1997, when WWF recalled their title from Shinjiro Otani. Otani then vacated all of the titles except the IWGP. The other two titles that Ultimo Dragon held along with the J-Crown were NWA World Middleweight Championship and WCW Cruiserweight Championship).

Since leaving WWE, Aries has really embraced the indie scene, having an insane schedule, winning championship from three different continents – America, Europe and Australia – and going up against the best of the best. Aries will be on the main event of the Impact Wrestling PPV Redemption on April 22, defending his Impact Wrestling World Championship against Rey Fenix and Pentagon Jr.

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