EDITOR'S NOTE: The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Michigan Wrestling Organization. Some dialog may not be suitable for readers of all ages.
Generally speaking, when two wrestlers join forces to form a tag team it’ because they share a common bond, something that is the genesis of their team. Even tandems that were thrown together on a whim eventually gelled to become a major force in the Michigan Wrestling Organization’s tag team division. The same cannot be said for the reigning MWO Tag Team champions, whose unlikely pairing will either help or hinder the division that has seen its ups and downs of interest.
It is strictly by circumstance and opportunity that the title belts are around the waists of Jack Teryn of the Disciples of Darkness and Pure Fury Jeff Clouse as of this writing. And in a unique twist of events, what started out as perhaps the most dominant tag title reign in recent memory has turned into a real-life episode of the Odd Couple, only the leading roles are being occupied by Teryn and PF—two superstars who could not be farther apart on opposite ends of the MWO spectrum.
This interesting conflict can be traced back to Slam-a-Thon in June, when Teryn and Victor Cross of the DOD won the MWO Tag Team titles from the Dean Boys. Cross and Teryn were thought to be long-term champions, as the division was once again undergoing a transition of talent phase. In what was a shocking blow to the Disciples group, it was announced that Cross would be put on the injured list just before the Disciples were to defend the championships against Blackwell & THEE Cody Leedy at SummerSmash. However, per the orders of then-interim commissioner Jeff Clouse, the Disciples would still be responsible for a title defense on August 11 in Davison, regardless how they chose to fill Cross’s injury-related absence.
Now here’s where it gets interesting. At SummerSmash, Teryn was poised to defend the titles on his own, according to his manager Aksel James Geer, even though a proclamation was made that Teryn had to have a partner in his corner for the match. Teryn was able to isolate Leedy during the match and it looked as if he was going to be able to win the match on his own. One mistake was all it took for Leedy to tag in his massive partner, and the momentum quickly shifted over to the challengers’ side. With Geer pacing back and forth and Tragedy Ann staring intently at Teryn, the Disciple member was in a bad way. With Leedy tagged back in and looking to win the titles for his team, PF sprinted to the ring, blind-tagged himself into the match and quickly pinned Leedy with a “PF-5” slam to retain the belts for the DOD.
So because Clouse used his last act as interim commissioner to insert himself into the match as Cross’s replacement, he is now a legitimate co-holder of the Tag Team titles with Jack Teryn. The partnership is doomed to fail, plain and simple. There’s no way that Clouse and Teryn are going to mold into this grade-A tag team that will set the division on fire. The team itself is a dumpster fire. PF’s only interest in this whole thing is his stake in the tag titles. No more, no less. And let’s face facts, it was a brilliant move on his part to exploit his advantages to secure a prime opportunity. Meanwhile,, somewhere in the realms of Parts Unknown, Skullz is seething in anger and unfortunately, it’s not out of the question that Victor Cross will be the one who pays for the disruption in the faction’s path of dominance. After all, it was his knee injury that set the course that has led the group to a major rift. While Tragedy Ann and Aksel Geer are trying to maintain some sort of balance, Clouse’s smart-ass demeanor is going to make him a major target for the Disciples.
But this is where the brilliance and experience of Jeff Clouse comes into play. He knows that the Disciples of Darkness need him to hold on to the Tag Team championship. If the faction really wants to dominate the Michigan Wrestling Organization, they’re going to have to seize control of the hardware. Would they really be willing to sacrifice the tag titles to teach PF a lesson? Probably not, considering that Blackwell & Leedy are still the to-ranked contenders and will likely receive a rematch at Trick-or-Slam on October 27 at the Richfield Road Church in Flint. And right of their heels are other teams like Hoss Fight, the Valor Society, and the Positive Promotions team of JJ Hughes & Roberto Cruz all waiting for their chance at the titles. Aside from just wanting to add another accolade to his Hall of Fame career, who knows what PF’s intentions are on becoming involved with the Disciples of Darkness. Looking at Clouse and Teryn, it’d be hard to put together another makeshift team that could equal the awkwardness between the reigning champions.
What if? What if, over time, Jack Teryn and Pure Fury Jeff Clouse were able to gel and become a dominant team? It could happen. This is the Michigan Wrestling Organization, where our tag title history is as scattered and unpredictable as any other title lineage in the entire industry. When there were failed experiments for forming a new tag team, there are rare exceptions when opposites truly do attract. Take Uncle Hector, for example. No one really took this guy seriously. He was known for having fun and just living life as laid back as possible. He formed unique and successful teams with the most unlikely of partners—the unorthodox Ooga Booga and the Russian powerhouse Kremlin. Hector would even win the titles with Kremlin as the two became good friends and delighted fans as The Foreigners. So, while it could happen, all early indications are that Teryn and PF are headed for a violent separation, especially if Clouse was responsible for the loss of the tag titles by tapping out or being pinned.
If that was to happen, there would be certain hell to pay.
THE RARE MAKESHIFT TEAMS THAT
ACTUALLY WORKED OUT:
SO FINE DUSTIN DIVINE & GUY MARSHALL
When the former Apocalypse underwent a transformation, he was a high-rolling superstar who sat atop the MWO, rich in cash and championship gold. But when he landed on hard times, he found himself completely broke. A chance meeting with former rival Guy Marshall, set in motion the formation of the B.U.M.S., which would dethrone the Prophets of Impact to win the MWO Tag Team titles.
UNCLE HECTOR & KREMLIN
One was beloved, the other among the most hated in the MWO. But the team of Uncle Hector and Kremlin, which had no business working out, would gel to become one of the organization’s premier tandems, eventually winning the tag straps at the 2010 Christmas Clash in a major upset over Damon Grey & Kristian Klayton.
MASKED ASSASSIN & EL DUDARINO
Another pairing of two floundering masked superstars that was meant to provide temporary opposition in the tag team division would defy the odds and seize their moments to etch their names in the history books. The Assassin and Dudarino won the titles from Non-2-Obvious at a 2004 Pro Wrestling Live event at the historic Terri’s Lounge in Flint.
JASON “THE BASHER” CLOUSE & JAYSEN PLATINUM
These two guys have never gotten along. The feud between Clouse and Platinum has headlined several supercards. But at the 2009 SummerSmash, the then-MWO champion the Basher and then-Great Lakes champ Platinum were tag team partners in a Gold Rush Match that would see them dethrone Double Jeopardy as the Tag Team champions.