I had it made up in my mind that I would dedicate my article this week to the winners of the Raw Tag Team Title Ladder Match but what I saw Saturday night was too good to pass on. Now I am a little out of my element because I've never watched them before they got to NXT, but they are building a steady resumé worthy of being talked about.
Rezar and Akam made their debuts in June of 2016 at NXT Takeover: The End by attacking Jason Jordan and Chad Gable after their match with The Revival. They would then attack Gable and Jordan again on NXT TV after another match with The Revival, which would lead to a match between the two teams. AOP would come out victorious in that match up. Next, they were booked in squash matches and although they were left off the Takeover: Brooklyn II card, Akam and Rezar would make their presence known by setting their sights on the Dusty Rhodes Classic. In the first round, they defeated The Bollywood Boyz, then Rich Swann and No Way José, followed by DIY, and finally TM 61 in the Finals at NXT Takeover: Toronto. Next, they set their eyes on the NXT Tag Team Titles and defeated DIY once again at NXT Takeover: San Antonio, on NXT and in a Triple Threat match at NXT Takeover: Orlando with The Revival.
The Authors of Pain have been wrestling for exactly two years. They have been on TV for 10 months and have made incredible strides. Akam was an Olympic medal winning amateur wrestler before joining WWE and Rezar was 4-2 in his MMA career before he joined. Needless to say, the transition has gone smoothly. As of today, they are undefeated. Among those they have defeated are 3 of the best Tag Teams in NXT during their stint down there. They have won the Dusty Rhodes Classic and used that to launch them to the NXT Tag Team Championship. I haven't even mentioned how great it is that they have a wrestling legend as their manager in Paul Ellering. Every time they have handed him the microphone, Ellering keeps it simple and straight to the point and its no wonder why he's one of the greatest to ever do it.
These guys are huge so with them you get the stereotypical big man skillset, but they're fast. They over power their opponents, beat them down and when they get into trouble, they power their way out of that too! My favorite example of this is from their most recent match. During the triple threat match, Gargano and Dawson had Akam trapped in a double submission. Ciampa and Wilder held, or at least they tried to, Rezar back to keep him from breaking the submission. Rezar, being the boss that he is, used both Wilder and Ciampa to break up the submission. These guys are far from a finished product however, if you put them in there with some guys who know what they're doing, it will surely bring out the best in them like it did for matches with DIY, TM61 and American Alpha.