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The NEVER Openweight Championship is a professional wrestling championship owned by the New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) promotion. NEVER stands for "New Blood", "Evolution", "Valiantly", "Eternal", and "Radical" and was a NJPW-promoted series of events, which featured younger up-and-coming talent and outside wrestlers not signed to the promotion. The project was officially announced on July 12, 2010, and held its first event on August 24, 2010.
Like most professional wrestling championships, the title is won as a result of a scripted match. There have been seven reigns shared among five wrestlers with one vacancy. Masato Tanaka was the first champion in the title's history. He also holds the record for the longest reign in the title's history, at 314 days. Togi Makabe's only reign of 41 is the shortest in the title's history. Tomohiro Ishii is the only wrestler to have held the title more than once, being a three-time champion. Ishii is the current champion in his third reign, having defeated Tomoaki Honma for the vacant title on February 14, 2015, at The New Beginning in Sendai.
|#||Order in reign history|
|Reign||The reign number for the specific wrestler listed|
|Event||The event in which the title was won|
|Successful defenses||The number of successful defenses the champion had during his reign|
|—||Used for vacated reigns so as not to count it as an official reign|
|N/A||The information is not available or is unknown|
|+||Indicates the current reign is changing daily|
|1||Masato Tanaka||1||November 19, 2012||314||Tokyo||Shodai NEVER Musabetsu Kyu Oza Kettei Tournament Final||4||Tanaka defeated Karl Anderson in the finals of a sixteen-man tournament to become the inaugural champion.|
|2||Tetsuya Naito||1||September 29, 2013||135||Kobe||Destruction 2013||2|
|3||Tomohiro Ishii||1||February 11, 2014||138||Osaka||The New Beginning in Osaka 2014||4|
|4||Yujiro Takahashi||1||June 29, 2014||106||Tokyo||Kizuna Road 2014||1|
|5||Tomohiro Ishii||2||October 13, 2014||83||Tokyo||King of Pro-Wrestling 2014||1|
|6||Togi Makabe||1||January 4, 2015||41||Tokyo||Wrestle Kingdom 9 in Tokyo Dome||0|
|—||Vacated||—||February 14, 2015||0||—||—||—||The title was vacated due to Makabe being sidelined with influenza.|
|7||Tomohiro Ishii||3||February 14, 2015||661+||Sendai||The New Beginning in Sendai||0||Ishii defeated Tomoaki Honma to win the vacant title.|
List of combined reigns
As of December 6, 2016
|†||Indicates the current champion|
|<1||Indicates that the reign lasted less than one day|
|Rank||Wrestler||No. of reigns||Combined|