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Tuesday, August 1, 2017

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EOTR Tag Team Tuesdays: Smackdown Live's Tag Team Division

By @AmeenKnows

The state of the Smackdown Live Tag Team Division is one in horrendous condition with no clear fix in the near future. Since the brand split, Smackdown Live had enjoyed a fresh run of booking from the creative team. They managed to make Alexa Bliss an immediate star overnight, gave us an entertaining angle with Heath Slater and his various number of kids whom he fights for and even gave AJ Styles the WWE Championship run he so rightfully deserved. However that was 2016. With the page turning to a new year, the brand has been struggling from spotty booking basically since WrestleMania 33.
That's a story for another day but the reason why it is being mentioned is because that spotty booking has made the Tag Team Division stick out like a sore thumb.

Let's be honest here. The Smackdown Tag Team Division has been the worst thing going for the brand since the split. However, due to the spotty booking, the brand's creative team can't mask the flaws that have plagued the division. There are currently 7 tag teams on the roster. The Colons are inactive. The Singh Brothers are more so Jinder Mahal's entourage than a team. This leaves us with The Usos, The New Day, The Ascension, The Hype Bros, and Breezango. The Ascension have been glorified jobbers since being called up to the main roster. They had shown flashes of returning to a more aggressive style earlier in the year but that was quickly squandered and now they have been reduced to comedy sketches with Breezango.

The Hype Bros suffered from lost momentum after Zack Ryder's knee injury took him off screen for months. Breezango are good but they aren't being taken serious as they've been logged into the comedic relief role of the brand. It would have been a feel good story had they won at Backlash, but that wouldn't have put the division in better standing honestly. Their most valuable young asset in American Alpha was squandered, left with nothing to do after dropping the Tag Team Titles to The Usos before WrestleMania and officially disbanded after Jason Jordan moved to Raw.

The Usos have been the most consistent presence in the division since the brand split. A refreshing heel turn has bled new life into them but no matter how many times they steal the show, the rest of the division can not keep up with them. The current Tag Team Champions The New Day are good but they aren't as great as they were during their record breaking run. An out of the box thought would be to pair up Harper and Rowan again. They were a very versatile team in their past run as a full time tag team. But that won't suddenly fix the division over night. Smackdown's only chance to fix this division is to somehow regain the light they had at the end of 2016 or risk boring us to death with the same content every week.