WWE | Pro Wrestling

The Dudley Boyz Return to WWE: What’s in Store for the Most Decorated Tag Team Ever

If you were to ask me which tag team has had the most impact on wrestling, I would answer without any hesitation: the Dudley Boyz. Bubba and D-Von have been notorious in the industry, especially known for their use of tables, and driving their opponents through them with their finishing move 3D. While they have been absent from the WWE for essentially the last 10 years, making random appearances here and there, they made an impact when they returned to the ring in August 2015. With a stellar history and solid fan core behind them, we can only wonder – what’s in store? But first, let’s reminisce with a bit of history from their early days.

The ECW Days

The Dudley Boyz got their big start in ECW, wrestling with the Dudley Family as a cohesive unit before then Bub Buh Ray and D-Von turned villain and kicked the remaining family members out. The duo was unstoppable, winning their first and second tag team championships in 1997. In 1998, they won their fourth championship only to lose it to the tag team of Balls Mahoney and Masato Tanaka. At the end of their reign in ECW, they had won the tag team title a whopping eight times and were set to take the titles to the WWE, then known as WWF, but lost the championship to Raven and Tommy Dreamer.

Onwards and Upwards to the WWF and TNA

The tag team joined the WWF in 1999, as ECW’s owner Paul Heyman was working in cahoots with the chief, Vince McMahon, to supply talent. The duo quickly changed tactics. Buh Buh Ray became Bubba, adding a stutter to his gimmick. It didn’t last long though, and they evolved, ditching their tie dye ways in favor of camo for a tougher look. Known as villains in the ring, Bubba Ray developed a penchant for slamming women through the table, and the duo eventually developed a feud with the Hardy Boys, Jeff and Matt.

Throughout the next six years, Bubba Ray and D-Von dominated the tag team division, even when they were separated between the two divisions Raw and Smackdown. They made their final appearance in 2005, and soon parted ways with the WWE who was letting talent loose due to budget concerns. Though they lost the rights to use their name, they were not a team to be discouraged and found their new home in TNA.

Throughout the next decade they won the tag team championship in TNA and made a name for themselves both in Japan and on the independent circuit. They were the only tag team to be inducted into TNA’s Hall of Fame, and the only team to win the titles in all three companies. What nobody expected, though, was a return to the WWE, and that came in 2015.

What’s In Store

The good news is that the Dudley Boyz are back on contract, and we just know at first glance that they’ll be shaking up the tag team division. WWE’s tag team as of right now is a bit shaky, with a bunch of idle singles thrown together to create random teams that basically have no following, and worst of all, no chemistry. The Dudley Boyz will change all of that, as they already have both in spades. I bet it won’t be long before they’re making history yet again, and claiming back the tag team championship for their own – and just to show everyone who’s really in charge. So – how long do you think it’ll take to hear the catchphrase “D-Von! Get the Tables!” My guess is not very long at all.

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Matt Zaffina

Matt is a writer and data fanatic for Rukkus. To catch more of his thoughts about wrestling and Bruce Willis you can follow him - @mattzaffina

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