Sizing Up the Prestige of the WWE and TNA Tag Team Titles
Over the years, numerous tag teams have made names for themselves in a "sport" dominated by singles competitors. There once was a time when tag teams were so abundant in the WWE that many good teams missed out on a chance to hold a tag team championship.
Gone are the days of the Dudley Boyz (Team 3D), Edge and Christian, the Hardy Boyz, T&A, the Holly Cousins, and the other tag teams that many of us became accustomed to watching in the early 2000's.
In today's WWE, it seems as if tag team wrestling is becoming less and less of a priority.
The effort was made to revamp the tag team division with the feud between the Colons and The Miz and John Morrison, but it seems as though tag team wrestling has taken a back seat to singles wrestling once again.
However, TNA, the WWE's competiton (and I use that term loosely), boasts a legitimate tag team division. Beer Money Inc., the Motor City Machine Guns, Lethal Consequences, British Invasion, No Limit, and LAX (although they remain inactive) are all looking to take the tag team belts from Team 3D.
Sure, they may not have as many tag teams as WWE did in the early 2000's, but every one one of these teams are contenders, and the fact that they are all legitimate tag teams helps to strengthen the division.
On the other hand, the WWE's tag team division consists of the Colons, Cryme Tyme, and to a lesser extent, Priceless, who have shied away from the division to do Randy Orton's bidding for him.
Now, onto the big question. After taking a look at the tag team picture in both WWE and TNA, which company's tag team titles are more prestigious at the current time?
From a historical standpoint, the answer is WWE without question. From the standpoint of a wrestling fan in the year 2009, this may or may not be a difficult question to answer.
At Wrestlemania 25, WWE unified the tag team belts in a match between World Tag Team Champions, The Miz and John Morrison, and WWE Tag Team Champions, Carlito and Primo Colon. With two belts to their names, the Colons would surely bring the WWE tag team division back to dominance.
Since Wrestlemania, this has not been the case. More often than not, Carlito and Primo wrestle in singles matches. When they do wrestle together, they are usually against make-shift tag teams, as seen on last week's edition of Raw, where they faced Goldust and Brian Kendrick.
Carlito and Primo are the tag team champs, and yet they are really the only tag team on Raw. Priceless are more than capable of having a good feud with the Colon's, but are stuck in their position as lackeys.
Even if the Unified Tag Team Championship was to be cross-branded, the only tag team on SmackDown is Cryme Tyme, and it seems as if they would rather host Diva Dance-Offs.
Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas have been together a lot lately, but I'm not sure if other wrestling fans would consider them a legitimate tag team just yet.
If they do make a permanent comeback, it will only benefit the tag team division.
The only viable option I see is to feud David Hart Smith and Tyson Kidd against Carlito and Primo. Not only could this make for a good, lengthy feud, but DH and Tyson could get over with the WWE audience in the process.
As of now, the tag team belts are more of a fashion accessory for Carlito and Primo, and I don't see a tag team currently in WWE that is ready to take the belts from them just yet.
If there is one thing I think TNA should receive credit for, it is their management of the tag team division. There may not be an over abundance of tag teams, but there are enough to argue over who should hold the belts next.
Separate cases can be made for Lethal Consequences, Beer Money Inc., No Limit, and the British Invasion to be the ones to dethrone Team 3D, one of the three greatest tag teams of all-time. Despite the talent of each of these teams, most fans will agree that it is Alex Shelley and Chris Sabin's time to reach the pinnacle of tag team wrestling.
The TNA Tag Team Championship is defended more often than the WWE Unified Tag Team Championship, and TNA uses fewer make-shift tag teams. Usually belts move from team to team in TNA.
For example, Beer Money lost the belts to Team 3D instead of to the random pairing of Homicide and Suicide.
The sad fact about a lot of WWE's tag teams are that a lot of them are wrestlers with no chemistry together, and I would not have been surprised if Brian Kendrick and Goldust had won the titles last Monday on Raw.
When it comes to the "battle" between WWE and TNA, WWE wins in almost all aspects, including star power, storylines, and quality of programming.
If there is one area where TNA has the leverage, it is in the tag team department. Tag team wrestling as a whole may not be what it used to, but TNA has done a better job with their tag team division than the WWE as of late.
Maybe the WWE will take tag team wrestling more seriously in the latter part of 2009. The tag team division is very fixable, and I doubt that it would take more than a few months to get it back on its feet.
If WWE plans on re-establishing a serious tag team division in the near future remains to be seen. With that said, the TNA Tag Team Championship is the one and only title in TNA that is currently more prestigious than its WWE counterpart.
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