Throughout the years, we’ve seen various team-ups make waves in the tag team division. But while some team-ups were built-up greatly or worked well together, there have been some strange team-ups that the WWE Universe never expected. For this piece, let’s take a look at the 10 most surprising WWE team-ups.
10. Tommy Dreamer, Rhyno, and the Dudley Boyz
WWE TLC 2015
8-Man Elimination Tables Match
The Dudley Boyz, Tommy Dreamer & Rhyno vs. The Wyatt Family#WWE #TLC pic.twitter.com/vfdrhAw5l5
— AjAT (@AJATWWE) December 13, 2015
The Dudley Boyz were locked in a feud against The Wyatt Family of Bray Wyatt, Luke Harper, Erick Rowan, and Braun Strowman. While fans expected the return of Spike Dudley, the Dudley Boyz introduced returning ECW wrestlers Tommy Dreamer and Rhyno. Given that Dreamer engaged in a lot of rivalries against the Dudley Boyz back in the day, it was certainly an odd team-up. Nevertheless, the team-up was a total failure after the Wyatt Family dominated them at the TLC pay-per-view in 2015.
9. Sasha Banks and Bayley
Bayley and Sasha Banks as the first ever WWE women’s tag team champions (2019) pic.twitter.com/gr9Q5W0QvL
— WrestlingWorldCC (@WrestlingWCC) May 30, 2022
Sasha Banks and Bayley have had a heated rivalry dating back to their NXT days. In fact, it isn’t a surprise that their beef spilled over to the main roster. Nevertheless, after going back-and-forth in several altercations, counseling sessions somehow improved their relationship to form The Boss ‘n’ Hug Connection. Bayley and Banks would go on to become the inaugural Women’s Tag Team Titles in a six women’s tag team Elimination Chamber match.
8. Owen Hart and Yokozuna
Another dominant victory for Yokozuna and Owen Hart,back in 1995 pic.twitter.com/G4ExPYQnoH
— Rasslin' History 101 (@WrestlingIsKing) November 22, 2022
With a mutual disdain towards Bret Hart, Owen Hart needed a dominant tag team partner to shock the world. As a result, he selected heavyweight Yokozuna. But despite the odd pairing, Yokozuna and the younger Hart would go on to have two reigns as WWE World Tag Team Champions. Their first reign even saw them hold on to the belts for a respectable 175 days.
7. Roman Reigns and Chad Gable
Roman hits a SPEAR On Corbin and helps even the odds for Ali to pick up the win for him and Shorty G to remain on the team #RomanReigns #RomanEmpire #Smackdown pic.twitter.com/fYVMJqqjjQ
— RomanReigns.Net | Fansite for Roman Reigns (@RomanReignsNet) November 16, 2019
Whether as a singles competitor or part of a faction, Roman Reigns makes his presence felt in the WWE. Although he has dominated with The Shield or as the leader of The Bloodline, one of his forgettable team-ups was with Chad Gable. While Gable can be a solid wrestler in the ring, he just didn’t mesh well with Reigns. Furthermore, their gimmicks and personalities were just too far apart for them to click.
6. Kane and the Hurricane
God this is my favorite TLC of all time.
This is CONSTANT action from start to finish. The energy from the crowd, JRs commentary. It's just all perfect. 🔥🔥🔥🔥 pic.twitter.com/vcak2GoUsx
— J A M E S (@ColeBay_bay) January 15, 2023
Kane is a big red monster capable of punishing his opponents in the most sadistic way possible in the squared circle. However, Kane was also capable of teaming up with the Hurricane. It was a team that was formed with the idea that “freaks are cool.” Although it was Kane who did a lot of the heavy lifting, the team-up was relatively successful after beating The Un-Americans for the WWE Tag Team Championship.
5. Rhea Ripley and Nikki ASH
rhea ripley + nikki ash, superbrutality is their tag team name!! pic.twitter.com/UBDNS344Ow
— ellen | qsmp 🇧🇷 (@erosiawings) May 4, 2022
Speaking of another superhero-monster duo, Rhea Ripley and Nikki formed a contrasting duo in terms of size and gimmicks. In fact, Ripley was dubbed as the Nightmare, while Nikki was almost a superhero. However, the two would become a successful duo by winning the Raw Women’s Tag Team Titles. Unfortunately, their disappointing losses in the latter stretch prompted Nikki to turn heel on her partner, resulting in an ugly break-up.
4. John Cena and Batista
Who remembers John Cena and Batista being World Tag Team Champions?! pic.twitter.com/7HkpwjHpGE
— Juanito’s Wrestling Vlog & MORE (@juanitosvlog) January 22, 2022
John Cena has been known a lot for his decorated individual run in the WWE. However, while Cena has also been successful in the tag team division, his partners were questionable at best. But among his partners, it was Cena’s team-up with Batista that left the WWE Universe searching for answers.
Despite being locked in a heated feud, the two biggest babyfaces in WWE had to team-up against Legacy for the Tag Team Championship. While they emerged victorious, the duo eventually failed in their title defense. Batista would proceed to beat Cena at Summerslam, injuring Cena’s neck in the process.
3. Heath Slater and Rhyno
Also Heath Slater and Rhyno became the inaugural smackdown tag team champs pic.twitter.com/E2gFghYyeR
— ᭙𝓲ꪶꪶ ☠︎︎ (@HeelBalor) September 11, 2019
While Heath Slater became a comedic relief as of late, he has been part of some notable factions including The Nexus, The Core, and 3MB. But during the tournament for the inaugural SmackDown Tag Team Championship, Slater desperately looked for a partner before bumping into veteran Rhyno. Although it seemed like this was a nuisance pairing at first, the duo went all the way to capture the Tag Team championship belts.
2. Edge and Hulk Hogan
def do not remember hulk hogan and edge as tag team champs from 2002 😏 #smackdown pic.twitter.com/JHAqvnb2Ph
— ᴄʜʀɪꜱᴛᴏᴘʜᴇʀ ✭ (@hbtc23) June 18, 2022
Edge has had some tag team success during his WWE run, especially with Christian. However, teaming up with Hulk Hogan was something wrestling fans never expected. Nevertheless, Edge came to help Hogan, who was under the attack of Chris Jericho. The now Rated-R superstar served as Hogan’s protege, with the duo eventually becoming WWE Tag Team Champions.
1. Shawn Michaels and “God”
WWE doing a tag team match with Vince and Shane McMahon against Shawn Michaels and God is something that's not talked about enough pic.twitter.com/FZKqorTOGQ
— Pøgba Senior (@TheSaItIsHere) May 12, 2020
In one of Vince McMahon’s infamous and controversial ideas, the WWE chairman decided to start a feud with “God.” After a build-up that was met with criticism, a No-Holds Barred match between Shane and Vince McMahon vs Shawn Michaels and “God” ensued at Backlash pay-per-view in 2006. The match saw the McMahons come away with the victory.