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"IWGP" was an annual tournament between 1983 and 1987. The tournament winner would face the winner of the previous year, of the "defending champion". It became "IWGP Heavyweight Title", a regular title after the 1987 tournament.

1983 Hulk Hogan
Defeats Antonio Inoki in final of 10-man round-robin tournament on 83/06/02 in Tokyo; participants of the tournament include Antonio Inoki (last NWF Heavyweight champion), Killer Khan, Big John Studd, Andre the Giant, Rusher Kimura (last IWA World Heavyweight champion, replacement for Dino Bravo), Canek (UWA World champion), Enrique Vera, Otto Wanz (CWA World champion), and Akira Maeda (European Heavyweight champion).
1984 Antonio Inoki
Defeats Hogan on 84/06/14 in Tokyo after winning an annual tournament to meet Hogan.
1985 Antonio Inoki
Defeats tournament winner Andre the Giant on 85/06/11 in Tokyo; defeats Hulk Hogan on 85/06/13 in Nagoya.
1986 Antonio Inoki
Gives up the status as the defending champion from the previous year in order to compete in the annual tournament; defeats Dick Murdoch in the final on 86/06/19 in Tokyo.
1987 Antonio Inoki
Defeats tournament winner Masa Saito on 87/06/12 in Tokyo; the championship becomes a regular title with Inoki recognized as the first IWGP Heavyweight champion.

* See IWGP Heavyweight Title.