Team Hell No: Why Kane and Daniel Bryan Are the WWE Duo of the Year

Ryan DilbertWWE Lead WriterOctober 30, 2012

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Even though Kane and Daniel Bryan formed their unlikely alliance more than halfway into the year, Team Hell No has been 2012's most entertaining team, a two-man circus of kicks, hugs, chokeslams and one-liners.

Their combination of high-quality wrestling matches, showmanship and hilarious moments have reinvigorated the tag team division.

It doesn't matter if WWE lucked into this pairing or if it was bred from ingenuity, Team Hell No has been one of WWE's most consistent elements and the provider of much of 2012's high points so far.

As funny and captivating as their antics have been, Kane and Bryan's success wouldn't have the momentum that is does without the captivating matches they've delivered.



Kane is at the stage of his career where splitting in-ring duties with a partner is the best course of action for him. This way he can make an impact without wearing himself down.

Not only does having Bryan carry half the load lessen Kane's chances of injury, but it allows him to go full force for short bursts.

Team Hell No draws much of its entertainment value from a blend of power and skill, gimmick and realism.

WWE has often teamed giants together for the stunning visual effect of two men of Kane's stature standing next to each other.


In this case, though, adding the smaller Bryan varies the action. Fans get several moments of technical wrestling excellence and chest-stinging kicks before Kane's presence alters the feel of the match.

Every match is an orchestra switching from stirring strings to pounding timpanis.

Sticking two of the company's best in-ring performers on the same team has not surprisingly made the tag team championship far more compelling. Against The Rhodes Scholars at Hell in the Cell, they continued what they'd been doing on Raw—namely giving the fans their money's worth.

Their odd couple chemistry and mercurial relationship is infused beautifully into their wrestling.

They won the tag titles after Kane chokeslammed his own partner onto Darren Young. They force tags onto each other. They go from protective of each other to infuriated in an instant.

WWE can now depend on the tag team championship match being one of the best of the night. Team Hell No vs. just about anybody can please a wrestling purist as well as the casual fan.



Bryan and Kane have been even wildly entertaining outside of the ring as well.

Their interactions in anger management classes initially drew fans in. There were several weeks in a row where their skits with Dr. Shelby and Harold were the best part of Raw.


Part of the appeal was the originality of the skits, but both Bryan and Kane nailed their performances.

No one is going to mistake either member of Team Hell No for Daniel Day-Lewis, but they approached these odd sketches with gusto. Juxtaposing Kane's dark, psychotic persona with the support group scenario was comic brilliance.

Bryan excelled as well, exploding at the sight of Dr. Shelby's son in a goat mask.

Even with the restrictions of the PG-rating, the humor never had to resort to a juvenile level.

Just when it seemed like WWE would run out of steam with this angle, they shifted gears just enough to make the joke new again.

Kane and Bryan had to do a trust exercise in a diner. Explaining the skit to a non-WWE fan might lead to an awkward moment of silence, but as odd as it sounded, a scene about two costumed men eating meatballs and salad was hilarious.

Their comic opus so far has been when they were forced to hug out their differences.

Again, two wrestlers hugging doesn't sound all that entertaining, but because of the setup, the two men involved and how engaged fans were with the team, it worked.

They continue to remind us that the sports and entertainment parts of the pro wrestling formula are equally vital.

With both these unexpectedly funny backstage and in-ring moments, with show-stealing matches and fantastic chemistry, Team Hell No has clearly been the best team of the year.