This is the seventh category of the first annual HOWIE Awards – celebrating the very best in wrestling in 2020. Read our writers picks and vote on an overall winner in our poll at the end of this story.
For today’s award we have asked our team to create a shortlist for the tag team of the year.
Over December we will be presenting our staff writers choices for ten different awards in association with Wrestle Merch Central. At the same time we will offer you, our readers, the chance to vote on your pick from our shortlist. At the same time, we hope you offer your alternatives via Twitter. Join the conversation by tagging us on @HO_Wrestling and using the hashtag #HOWIES20.
You can see the already announced categories to review and vote HERE. We will announce the overall reader voted winners on New Years Day.
Paul Benson, Hooked On Wrestling Tribal Chief
Shortlist Pick: The Golden Role Models
I came extremely close to giving this to FTR. I love their act and they have done superb work since joining AEW and finally being treated as they deserve.
In the end though, I had to opt for the team of Sasha Banks and Bayley. Whether as a conniving heel pairing, or as partners clearly on the edge of a break up, they have played their roles to utter perfection. The matches they have been involved in have been, in truth, less memorable outside of their series with Asuka and Kairi Sane, but it isn’t always about star ratings.
Banks and Bayley have been the best team in wrestling this year and actually, it isn’t really close.
Cameron Bennett, Hooked On Wrestling Contributor
Shortlist: The Street Profits
Again, I’ve had a lot of trouble with this one. With the pandemic changing EVERYTHING, the team who I would have bet on at the start of the year, The Lucha Bros, have not been together for the vast majority of the time and FTR have been missing for a large chunk of time while they sat out their WWE contracts.
To that end, I’ve settled on Montez Ford and Angelo Dawkins. They’ve had some excellent matches, won the Tag Team Championship and been entertaining all the way through.
Chris Napier, Hooked On Wrestling Contributor
Shortlist: The North
Oft overlooked on account of being on IMPACT Wrestling, the North have had a fantastic year and edge out other contenders (Golden Role Models, Young Bucks, FTR, Hangman & Page) with their consistency and also because I’m bigging up most of them elsewhere. Holding down the IMPACT tag titles for most of the year, only to allow the MCMGs a nostalgia run and finally transition to the Good Brothers, they put on great matches and back it up with good character work. They deserve more acclaim than they’re getting.
Chris Hatch, Hooked On Wrestling Editor
Shortlist Pick: FTR
They took the plunge that we were hoping for, and were given the ball to run with at the top of the AEW ladder. Cash Wheeler and Dax Harwood did exactly what they are all about – put on matches which were logical, engaging and not only elevated their stock but that of their opponents as well. Add to that the fact we finally got to see FTR vs The Young Bucks (albeit something I hope will happen again with a bit more build) and it felt like a top year for FTR.
Liam Happe, Hooked On Wrestling Features Editor
Shortlist Pick: The Young Bucks
Extremely grating attempts to have it both ways as popular babyfaces AND cool bad guy tendencies aside (and what is it with wrestlers in positions of power always trying to butter both sides of that slice of bread?), Matt and Nick Jackson have turned in fantastic duos bouts with AEW’s top offerings at the big events, while also really helping numerous young pairings enhance their standings on the intimidating platform of national TV.
Even if you don’t get their alleged ‘characters’ at all (and that group includes me), they continue to deliver the goods in-ring.
Ash Rose, Editor, Hooked On Wrestling Contributor
Shortlist Pick: The Golden Role Models
It’s not been a vintage year for tag team wrestling. The Street Profits have dominated the title scene in WWE, but without really have a standout match or feud to speak of to warrant them being called tag team of the year. Over in AEW, FTR have slowly shown the kind of displays WWE never really got out of them. However, I’m going for The Golden Role Models.
For a period over the summer Sasha Banks and Bayley were all over WWE TV and they never outstayed their welcome. Both Superstars heel personas were perfected as they engaged in enjoyable programmes with The Kabuki Warriors and Alexa and Nikki Cross and dominated all the gold across Raw and SmackDown.
James Dee, Hooked On Wrestling Contributor
Shortlist Pick: The Street Profits
Urgh, this year has had a complete dearth of truly excellent tag team wrestling. There were some bright spots don’t get me wrong but a lot of it failed to really excite me like the days of Edge & Christian vs Hardys or even the recent incredible work of The Usos vs The New Day.
With Injury taking out the Usos, the New Day and The Viking Raiders, FTR being unable to compete for most of the year and pandemics taking away my beloved Mark Andrews/Flash Morgan Webster and my ‘behated’ Grizzled Young Veterans (shoes off..etc.), I can’t count The Golden Role models because frankly they were always side-eyeing each other and just waiting for the opportunity to betray each other and that’s not very tag-teamy.
The Street Profits almost win by default. That’s not really fair to the lovers of the smoke because they have done a lot of good work, their “Anything you can do, we can do better” series with the aforementioned Raiders was a lot of fun and showcased more personality for both teams and every match they put on was at least good. Also Montez Ford has the best frog splash in the business right now. Victory goes to the Street Profits but let’s give the divisions a little more focus next year huh?
Justin Czerwonka, Hooked On Wrestling Contributor
Shortlist Pick: Kenny Omega And Hangman Page
Some more of the weirdness that is 2020. Imagine Kenny Omega being part of the Tag Team of the Year but not in the discussion for wrestler of the year.
I had my doubts at first but Omega and Page killed it as a tag team in 2020. Page became a star throughout the year and became more popular than Omega. AEW is really the only major promotion that cares about their tag teams, and Omega and Page topped that division for most of the year.
Gary Tait, Hooked On Wrestling Contributor
Shortlist Pick: The North
The answer to this is easy – it is The North from Impact Wrestling. They have held the titles for a year, have been consistent throughout and had some great matches. It is not even a debate for me.
Lewis Brown, Hooked On Wrestling Contributor
Shortlist Pick: The Young Bucks
To be honest, it’s hard for me to put any other tag-team in this spot. FTR are fantastic but with the Young Bucks triumphing over them for the AEW tag titles, they take the top spot for me. They have done so much for the tag division, both by leading by example and also helping to showcase newer talent.
That match between them and Kenny Omega and Hangman Page was… *chef’s kiss* as well. With their book coming out as well, it really feels like the team have broken into a well-deserved superstardom status this year.
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