It’s often overlooked how the right name can make or break a tag team. It comes up when two guys are just tossed together as a team and end up becoming fantastic. The New Age Outlaws, Beer Money, Money Inc., and the New Day show that. There are also teams meant to be a good deal from the start who benefit from a great name. The Fabulous Freebirds, the Road Warriors/Legion of Doom, Demolition, the Midnight Express, the list goes on. Getting the right name can often be the key to how well a team goes over.
Which is why it’s amazing when WWE can’t come up with one. It’s one thing for a name that sounds a bit off-beat or just weird. Some major teams don’t really go by fancy names at all as for every Rated RKO, there’s a Deuce n' Domino. But it’s still astounding how many atrocious names WWE has developed for their stars over the years and make it impossible for fans to accept from the start. Here are 10 of the worst tag team names in WWE history as a reminder of how the right moniker is always the first step to success or failure.
10 Head Cheese
Yes, this was meant as a joke but it doesn’t make it any better. Al Snow was the nutjob known for talking to a mannequin's head while Steve Blackman was a dead serious martial artist. The idea was Snow pushing Blackman into becoming a team with Blackman hating the entire deal.
It was nothing but comedy with Snow even insisting Blackman wear a huge cheese hat on his head to go along with it all. They had very limited success before splitting to show that even when a name is meant as a joke, it doesn’t make it any better for fans to accept.
9 The Hype Bros
By all reports, it’s not Vince McMahon trying to make Mojo Rawley a star in WWE but rather HHH. Hunter just sees something in the guy that few agree is there. This involved pairing Rawley with Zack Ryder (whose career decline is just downright sad). They had pushes in NXT and then on the main roster and were given several shots at the tag titles.
They weren’t terrible but not worthy of the push as their name and gimmick were just too goofy for modern fans to get behind. They eventually split to prove they just weren’t worthy of the hype.
8 Slater Gator
One has to give it to Heath Slater. The man has managed to survive in the company for years despite some bad losing streaks and terrible teams. As dumb as 3MB might have been, it was miles better than when Slater was put with Titus O’Neil. Slater Gator? There’s nothing linking Titus to an alligator at all and obviously chosen just for the rhyme.
As if proving how poor it was, the two men never clicked as a team and were split fast. No wonder Slater and Rhyno never tried some clever name for their championship pairing considering the track record Slater had with team names.
Sometimes, putting two struggling singles guys together can make for a great tag team. This was not such a case. After a huge singles push, Ryback was on the downslide in 2013 and not doing well. WWE thus put him together with Curtis Axel, reasoning they could balance each other out.
Not only were they terrible in the ring but the name was just a total joke. It proved once more how WWE just couldn’t get the fans to care about Ryback and pairing him with Axel just lowered him more. No wonder Ryback was gone from the company not long after this bad pairing.
Many are amazed that Alicia Fox is still with WWE. The woman is mostly a throwback to the era of the Divas who did nothing but show off in hot outfits yet keeps getting some attention. In 2013, Fox teamed up with Aksana, a bodybuilder who had some attention. They were an okay pairing of heels attacking others but the name just sounded goofy.
It seems more in line with a Pokémon character than a serious tag team and just hard to take seriously. Fox ended the partnership attacking Aksana who left shortly after to end a very bad name for a bad team.
5 Air Boom
Before his time with the New Day, Kofi Kingston had several other tag team partners. He and Evan Bourne made a very promising duo as both were great high flyers and some good success. But the name? Incredibly, it was the fans who chose it from a few options on the WWE website which goes to show the fandom can pick horrible names as well as a company can.
It just sounded weird with the “boom” part and while it was supposed to push their ariel abilities, it didn’t work out that way. It ended with Bourne suspended and Kofi working with R-Truth as the “boom” was a bust of a name.
4 Well Dunn
WWE just had a really bad issue with names in the 1990s. Rex King and Steve Doll had done okay as the Southern Rockers but WWF wanted something more “clever” than that. They were gimmicked as Timothy Well and Steven Dunn and a name that sounds more like a bakery line than a top wrestling team.
It wasn’t helped by their outfits of singlets and huge bow ties. They weren’t too bad a team but that name just made them sound like a joke and adding Harvey Whippleman as a manager didn’t help either. They were pretty much “done” by 1996 to show how a bad name can hurt a good team.
3 High Energy
Before he took off as a major heel, Owen Hart was basically employed by WWE simply because Bret wanted his younger brother around. After he and Jim Neidhart failed as “The New Foundation,” Owen was put with Koko B. Ware. Both high flyers, they should have clicked but were saddled with horrible 1990s-themed outfits with suspenders.
Not helping was the name of “High Energy” which really didn’t apply to many of their matches. They had just one PPV matching, losing to the Headshrinkers at the 1992 Survivor Series and were split by early 1993. There truly was no energy in this pairing.
2 Pretty Mean Sisters
1999 had WWE really going overboard with the T&A stuff. Nothing proved that more than the Pretty Mean Sisters. Terri, Jacqueline and Ryan Shamrock (the kayfabe “sister” of Ken) joined together in an attempt to get the men in the company under their heels. Just spell out the name and you’ll see exactly what WWE was going for.
Having a guy named “Meat” as their muscle didn’t help the situation at all. Their antics included Terri faking a pregnancy and some cheap attacks before finally disbanding but the name alone should have ended this before it started.
1 Tekno Team 2000
During a brief time in 1995, Vince McMahon hired Bill Watts to work for the company. To no one’s shock, it didn’t last long given the egos of the two men involved. This included Watts once more attempting to push his son Erik as a star as he had in WCW. Time had not improved Erik’s work too much as he was still very raw and not doing well in the ring. Paired with Chad Fortune as “Travis and Troy,” they were supposed to be “the tag team of the future.” Other teams were told to put them over but it didn’t work out well as by 1996 they were out of the company as fans never got behind this lame name.