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Tuesday, February 14, 2017

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EOTR Tag Team Tuesdays: The World's Greatest Tag Team

By @OmegaShammgod 



One of the most popular teams among fans during the Ruthless Aggression Era was none other than Charlie Haas and Shelton Benjamin. A duo who let their athleticism and technical abilities bring the Smackdown Tag Team Division to new heights. Originally starting out as Kurt Angle's (in my own words) bodyguards, WGTT quickly shot to the top of Smackdown's Tag Team Kingdom.

A month after making their debut, WGTT beat Edge and Chris Benoit in a number one contenders match. A week later, they defeated Los Guerreros to win the WWE Tag Team Championship. They successfully defended the Titles in a Triple Threat Tag Team match against Los Guerreros and Benoit & Rhyno but would drop them to Eddie Guerrero and Tajiri at Judgment Day in a Ladder Match.


After dropping the titles, Angle fired Haas and Benjamin as his "clients". Shortly thereafter they would win back the tag team titles from Guerrero and Tajiri. However it didn't last long as they would drop the titles to Los Guerreros and unsuccessfully challenge for the titles at Wrestlemania 20. They would be split up by way of the 2004 Draft that sent Benjamin to Raw. It would not be the last time we'd see the duo together in WWE however.


2 years later, Haas would return to Raw after a brief run on the independent circuit. 2 weeks later, the World's Greatest Tag Team would finally reunite to defeat The Highlanders. They then begun a short lived rivalry which ended with WGTT becoming the first team to beat Cryme Tyme, ending their undefeated streak.

As much as everyone loved WGTT, I've always felt like they hadn't reached their full potential together. Part of the reason I believe this is because of the lack of depth in WWE's Tag Team division in both eras of the WGTT's run. In 2003-2004, Smackdown was run by mostly makeshift teams like a Rhyno and Benoit, Edge and Rey Mysterio, etc. and in 2006-2007, there were a lot of inexperienced guys to work with such as The Highlanders and Cryme Tyme.



Both Benjamin and Haas were both great individual talents. Benjamin clearly broke through as the fan favorite because he dazzled crowds with his incredible athleticism, which I don't think has been matched by anyone in the company since. Haas was a mat technician of sorts which didn't really bring fans to their feet, but boy could he wrestle his ass off. After the split, Benjamin would become the more successful of the duo, winning the Intercontinental Championship and even scoring a huge upset victory over Triple H. Haas stayed on Smackdown and would become Tag Team Champion again with Rico. My favorite match to watch involving these guys was their Ladder Match at One Night Stand 2007 with the Hardys. Despite losing, I thought it was a show stealing performance between the two teams. These guys were great and I wish they got even more attention.

-Ameen

1 comments:

  1. They wrestled 4 ROH a few years ago and won the ROH WORLD tag team titles. If haas wasn't retired, he would return to wwe, and reform WGTT with Shelton.

    ReplyDelete