“Ohhhh, you didn’t know?????”
Professional wrestling tag teams don’t seem to get nearly as much emphasis these days as they did back in the 1970’s and 80’s. Even with electrifying performers such as the Hardy Boyz, the Young Bucks, and Edge and Christian making an impact in the 2000’s, most modern tag teams are packaged together for a brief stint and then busted up for individual runs at wrestling gold. There are very few teams that stand the test of time. For that reason, the majority of my favorite tag teams are from the 1980’s and 90’s, with just a few exceptions.
As with my previous list, the only criteria that I have for making this list is how much I personally enjoy the wrestlers and how much of an impact they had on my life. Here ya go…..
#10: Nikki Cross and Alexa Bliss
Although it currently looks like this duo might be separating soon, Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross have been a surprisingly enjoyable tag team to watch. I love the chemistry between them, with Cross becoming unhinged during matches and Bliss pushing all of the right buttons against their competitors. Bliss has had quite a bit of success on her own, and it looks like Cross might be about to get a singles push, hopefully for the Women’s title.
#9: The Fabulous Freebirds
Inventors of the “Freebird Rule,” which allowed any two members of the Freebird stable to defend the tag titles at any time, the trio of Michael “P.S.” Hayes, Terry “Bam Bam” Gordy, and Buddy “Jack” Roberts were definitely trailblazers in the world of tag team wrestling. Hayes loved running his mouth and excelled at agitating audiences and other wrestlers. Their feuds with other stables such as the Von Erichs are the stuff of legend. Other members rotated in and out, but the trio that I fell in love with was that of Hayes, Gordy, and Roberts.
#8: The New Age Outlaws
The “Road Dogg” Jesse James and the “Bad Ass” Billy Gunn formed the New Age Outlaws in the late 90’s as a part of the D-Generation X stable. They were an integral part of my jumping ship from WCW to WWF. James had a mouth on him that few wrestlers can match and Gunn provided the muscle for the duo. After exiting from WWF, the duo would find themselves either at odds with one another or reuniting as the James Gang or the Voodoo Kin Mafia. The pair had a solid run as tag team champions in multiple promotions and also had excellent careers as singles competitors and with other tag team members. They definitely deserve their spot in the WWE Hall of Fame.
#7: The Lucha Bros
One of the few modern tag teams that connects with the crowd on a level similar to legends like the Rock N’ Roll Express, the Lucha Bros (Pentagon, Jr. and Fenix) are simply amazing to watch. Whether it’s Fenix flying through the air or walking the ropes to execute a move or Pentagon locking up opponents in submissions, this team is a one-two punch of excitement. Both wrestlers have lengthy and successful singles careers, but their tag team success has been limited to single runs except for their AAA two-time (and current) reign. Hopefully AEW will put the belts on these guys soon!
#6: The Brain Busters
Quite possibly the two toughest guys on this list, Tully Blanchard and Arn Anderson were essentially a pair of powerhouses that pummeled their opponents into submission. Originating in the NWA and founding members of the legendary Four Horsemen stable, Blanchard and Anderson only held championships on three occasions (twice in the NWA and once in the WWF) but were extremely popular and had feuds with other legendary tag teams like the Midnight Express. Anderson would win numerous tag titles with other wrestlers as wold Blanchard, with Blanchard having more success as a singles competitor. Simply put, when you talk about legends, these two guys should come to mind.
#5 Edge and Christian
With seven WWE Tag Team title reigns and numerous singles championships across multiple promotions, Edge and Christian are two of the most decorated guys on this list. Along with the New Age Outlaws, the Hardy Boyz, and Harlem Heat, E&C were one of the final duos to find major success as an established tag team and not just as a couple of wrestlers thrown together to have a title run. With their “Five Second Poses” and the Con-Chair-To, the duo entertained crowds for many years. They also achieved legendary status with the Hardy Boyz and the Dudley Boyz in mulitple TLC (Tables, Ladders, and Chairs) matches.
#4: Harlem Heat
Although Booker T is probably best known for his singles success, he and Stevie Ray ruled WCW as Harlem Heat. With a record ten WCW Tag Title reigns under their belts, it’s hard to argue that they weren’t the promotion’s greatest tag team. Stevie Ray was the enforcer and Booker T would hit the high spots. They worked in perfect unison and the crowd loved them.
#3: The Hardy Boyz
One of the last pure tag teams in professional wrestling in my opinion, the Hardy Boyz (collectively known as Team Xtreme with Lita), have held no less than twelve tag team titles across multiple promotions. Jeff was the flyer and the innovator while Matt was the stronger wrestler on the ground. They’ve broken up and reunited multiple times over the years and both Matt and Jeff have had massive success as singles competitors, but I’ll always prefer them as a tag team. Lita has also had multiple successful runs as a singles competitor, with four women’s title reigns under her belt.
#2: The Midnight Express
The only reason that these guys are number two on my list is because the number one team were such awesome faces against them. The Midnight Express was the first heel team that I ever loved to hate. There have been numerous members on the team over the years, but the duo of “Loverboy” Dennis Condrey and “Beautiful” Bobby Eaton were my favorites. Their feud with the Rock N’ Roll Express is my favorite feud of all time. With their manager, the legendary Jim Cornette, singing their praises and often interfering in matches, these guys were simply amazing. I really hated these guys, but they were so much fun to watch!
#1: The Rock N’ Roll Express
No team in the history of professional wrestling had as much of an impact on my childhood as the Rock N’ Roll Express did. Sure, other teams might have won more titles, but none of them ever triggered waves of excitement in me like Robert Gibson and Ricky Morton did. I watched their matches religiously and cheered them on as they battled teams like the Midnight Express and the Fantastics. They were literally legends fighting legends in their heyday. The duo are still active on the wrestling circuit, most recently being a part of the new Billy Corgan version of the NWA (and winning the tag titles for a ninth time). They were innovators, high flyers, and the precursor to future flyers like The Rockers, the Hardy Boyz, Edge & Christian, and the Young Bucks. Modern tag team wrestling owes these guys everything!
Like my previous list, there are plenty of other tag teams that I could have listed in this ranking. Honorable mentions go out to the Kabuki Warriors (Asuka and Kairi Sane), the Road Warriors, the Fantastics, the Dudley Boyz, the Motor City Machine Guns, and the Rock n’ Sock Connection.
Let me know who you’re favorite tag teams are in the comments section. There’s no wrong answer, so don’t be afraid to list any teams that might not be that well known. Heck, I could have listed a few independent teams such as the Pump Patrol and Hawkx Aerie, so feel free to list all of your favorites.
As always, thanks for reading my post. I’ll have another one coming up real soon!