Demolition (professional wrestling)

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Demolition

Smash (left) and Ax as WWF Tag Team Champions
Tag team
Members Ax[1]
Smash[1]
Name(s) Demolition
Heights Ax:[1]
6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)[2][3]
Smash:[1]
6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)[4][5]
Crush:[1]
6 ft 6 in (1.98 m)[6]
Combined
weight
Varied depending on combination
Billed from Parts Unknown[7]
Former
member(s)
original Smash[1][8]
Crush[1]
Debut January 17, 1987[1][9]
Promotions Chikara
GLCW
JAPW
SWS
WWF

Demolition is a professional wrestling tag team most prominent during the late 1980s and early 1990s in the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) made up of Ax (Bill Eadie), Smash (Barry Darsow), and later Crush (Brian Adams). In WWF, Demolition were three-time Tag Team Champions, and hold the records for both the single longest tag title reign and the most combined days as reigning champions.[10] Beginning in 2007, Ax and Smash reunited for several appearances at various independent shows and legends conventions.[1]

Career[edit]

World Wrestling Federation (1987–1991)[edit]

Formation and early push (1987–1988)[edit]

Randy Colley and Bill Eadie created the Demolition gimmick and worked for the World Wrestling Federation (WWF). They debuted as a heel tag team on the January 17, 1987 edition of Superstars, alongside manager Luscious Johnny V, defeating the team of Salvatore Bellomo and Mario Mancini.[9] The tag team resembled Lord Humungus of the 1981 film Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior, with the facepaint of hard rockers KISS. Demolition wore studded black leather outfits and leather-covered hockey masks to the ring, which they removed to reveal face paint usually made up of some combination of black, white, red, or silver colors, though other colors were sometimes included. After only a few matches, Colley was replaced with Barry Darsow in a match aired on the February 14, 1987 edition of Superstars. In an RF Video shoot interview with Eadie and Darsow, Eadie claimed that Colley was replaced because he was recognizable to the fans as the man who previously performed as Moondog Rex. The WWF pitched a few potential replacements to Eadie, but he felt fans would recognize the suggested replacements. Eadie felt that many WWF fans would not recognize Darsow, who left Jim Crockett Promotions following a dispute in order to take over the role of Smash.[1][4][5][8]

On the March 14 edition of Saturday Night's Main Event, Demolition participated in a battle royal, won by Hercules Hernandez.[11] Demolition became known for their aggressive style in the ring and the way that they dominated their matches. Their first feud was with the team of Ken Patera and Billy Jack Haynes, which started after Ax and Smash brutalized WWF jobber Brady Boone (billed in storyline as the cousin of Billy Jack Haynes) during a televised match. Demolition claimed victories over all of the established face tag teams in the WWF at the time, including the Killer Bees (Jim Brunzell and B. Brian Blair), The Rougeau Brothers (Jacques and Raymond), British Bulldogs (Dynamite Kid and Davey Boy Smith),[12] The Young Stallions (Paul Roma and Jim Powers),[9] The Islanders (Haku and Tama),[9] and Can-Am Connection (Rick Martel and Tom Zenk).[12] Around that same period, Johnny Valiant (who left not too long afterwards) "sold" their contracts to Mr. Fuji who became their manager.

Demolition made their pay-per-view debut at Survivor Series in an elimination tag team match where 5 babyface teams faced 5 heel teams. Demolition was part of the heel group, They were disqualified for shoving down referee Dave Hebner during the match and the face team went on to win the match.[13]

Tag team title reigns (1988–1990)[edit]

Demolition was known for their distinctive outfits which involved an entrance mask as well as red and silver face paint.

At WrestleMania IV, Ax and Smash defeated Strike Force (Rick Martel and Tito Santana) to win their first WWF Tag Team Championship. Ax struck Martel in the back of the neck with Fuji's cane while he had Smash in a Boston crab (Fuji had dropped the cane into the ring while taking a beating from Santana who carried on oblivious to what was happening in the ring). Martel was knocked out and Smash covered him for the pin while Ax hid outside with the cane.[1][14][15] As champions, they defeated a number of the top teams of the WWF, which at the time had a very talent-rich and hotly contested tag division, most notably the British Bulldogs[1][16] and Hart Foundation (Bret Hart and Jim Neidhart).[1][17][18]

Their first big challenge came in the summer of 1988, when the Powers of Pain (The Warlord and The Barbarian) entered the WWF and challenged them for the Tag Team Championship. During the elimination tag team match at Survivor Series, Mr. Fuji attacked Demolition and joined forces with the Powers of Pain. A double turn took place as Demolition turned face while the Powers of Pain turned heel.[19][20] Demolition defeated the Powers of Pain & Mr. Fuji in a tag team handicap match at WrestleMania V to retain the WWF Tag Team Championship when they caught Fuji in the "Demolition Decapitation".[21] Prior to this, Ax and Smash also memorably squared off against each other as entrants #1 and #2 in the Royal Rumble match at the Summit in Houston in 1989, tearing into each other for the full two minutes before being joined in the ring by the third entrant André the Giant, where they once again joined as Demolition and targeted the big man.[22]

After WrestleMania V, Demolition started a feud with the Brain Busters (Arn Anderson and Tully Blanchard), who were the members of the heel stable The Heenan Family, led by none other than Bobby "The Brain" Heenan. On the May 27, 1989 edition of Saturday Night's Main Event, the Brain Busters defeated Demolition by disqualification.[23] Demolition became the longest reigning WWF Tag Team Champions after breaking the record of The Valiant Brothers (Jimmy and Johnny), and lasting a reign of 478 days.[24] They finally dropped the titles to the Brain Busters in a two out of three falls match on the July 29 edition of Saturday Night's Main Event.[1][25] Demolition started a feud with André the Giant and the Twin Towers (Akeem and The Big Bossman). At SummerSlam 1989, King Duggan and Demolition defeated André and the Twin Towers in a six-man tag team match.[26] Demolition focused on regaining the tag titles and restarted their feud with the Brain Busters. On the November 4 edition of Superstars (taped on October 2), Demolition defeated the Brain Busters to regain their tag titles and win their second WWF Tag Team Championship.[1][9][27]

Demolition next feuded with the new Heenan Family team, the Colossal Connection (André the Giant and Haku). On the December 30 edition of Superstars (taped on December 13), Demolition lost the tag titles to the Colossal Connection.[1][9] At WrestleMania VI at the Skydome in Toronto, Demolition defeated the Colossal Connection to regain the titles and win their third and final WWF Tag Team Championship, and finally put an end to their feud with the Heenan Family.[1][28][29] Due to his deteriorating physical condition, André never tagged in during the match with Haku facing Demolition on his own.

Addition of Crush (1990–1991)[edit]

Shortly after WrestleMania VI, the team gradually began to turn heel again. This intensified when Brian Adams debuted in WWF and joined the team as Crush.[1][6][30] In kayfabe it was claimed that this was a heinous scheme to gain a three-on-two advantage over other tag teams, but it was actually because Eadie had developed an allergy to shellfish (which he attributed to his frequent trips to Japan) which hospitalized him, and WWF owner and head booker Vince McMahon wanted to add a third member to the team just in case the illness put Eadie out of action for an extended period of time.[31]

Crush soon took a more active role, teaming with Smash while Ax faded into the background, becoming more of a manager. At this time Demolition used the "Freebird rule" to allow any two members to wrestle the matches. Smash and Crush defended the titles in the summer of 1990. On the July 28 edition of Saturday Night's Main Event, Smash and Crush defeated The Rockers (Shawn Michaels and Marty Jannetty) to retain the titles[1][32] after Ax interfered on their behalf and attacked Michaels.[33] The next month at SummerSlam, however, Demolition lost the titles to Hart Foundation in a two out of three falls match. In that match, Smash & Crush started, but Ax secretly came down later on to substitute himself into the match behind the referee's back. Ultimately, the Legion of Doom (Hawk and Animal),[1][34][35] who had signed with the WWF a month earlier, interfered and snuffed out the deception. Demolition never recaptured the titles after this loss.

Soon after, due to the Legion of Doom (L.O.D.) now being on the WWF roster, Demolition's popularity began to decline, despite regaining the managerial services of Mr. Fuji in the fall of 1990. As a result of the interference by LOD, Demolition began feuding with the Ultimate Warrior and LOD. On the October 13 edition of Saturday Night's Main Event, Ax, Smash, and Crush lost to the Ultimate Warrior and LOD.[1][36] At Survivor Series, The Perfect Team (Demolition and Mr. Perfect) was defeated by The Ultimate Warriors (the Ultimate Warrior, the Texas Tornado, and the Legion of Doom).[1][37] Shortly after, Ax left the WWF, with the on-air explanation being an order from kayfabe WWF President Jack Tunney that there could only be two members of Demolition. Smash and Crush were the two remaining members, and went on to primarily lose to teams such as the Rockers and the Legion of Doom. The team lost a match to Genichiro Tenryu and Koji Kitao at WrestleMania VII.[38] The team's next match was at WWF/SWS Wrestlefest on March 30, 1991 where they defeated Shunji Takano & Shinichi Nakano.[39] Following this match, Demolition would continue to wrestle in both the WWF and the SWS throughout the summer usually on the losing end of matches. The team's final match occurred on September 18, 1991 in a losing effort to George Takano and Shunji Takano.[40] Afterwards, they eventually broke up and the members went their separate ways. Crush went on a leave of absence from the WWF, while Smash wrestled in singles matches (usually on the losing end) for a brief time before becoming Repo Man, a sneaky thief claiming to be a repossessor, in the fall of 1991. Crush would return in the spring of 1992 as a face, beginning a run as the popular "Kona Crush" (a surfer type). The two ended up facing off at SummerSlam 1992, with Crush getting the victory.[41] Crush would later turn heel on Randy Savage and rehire Mr. Fuji as his manager in 1993, once again painting his face, only in a different pattern from his Demolition days.

Post-WWF[edit]

After leaving the WWF, Eadie began using the name Axis the Demolisher on the independent circuit and took in original "Smash" gimmick owner Randy Colley as well as Carmine Azzato under the name of Demolition Blast in an attempt to resurrect the Demolition name and gimmick.[42][43] They were sent a cease and desist letter by the WWF once they found out.

In the mid-1990s, Bill Eadie filed a lawsuit against the WWF for the rights of the "Demolition" name and gimmick but lost. Ax, Smash and Crush inked a deal with Jakks Pacific to make Demolition Classic Superstars action figures. Ax and Smash were together in a 2-pack for Toys R Us, each had a singles figure from series #14, and were packaged and repainted with Crush in a 3-pack for Walmart.

On April 1, 2007, Darsow and Eadie reunited for the first time in 16 years at a "Meet the Legends" event in Windsor, Ontario, Canada.[44]

On August 13, 2007, Brian Adams was found unconscious in his Tampa, Florida home. Adams' wife found him not breathing in his bed, and summoned paramedics. The wrestler could not be revived, and was pronounced dead at the scene. Police could not immediately determine a cause of death, but noted no signs of injury.[45][46]

On September 29, 2007, Darsow and Eadie reunited as the tag team Demolition for the first time in 16 years in Orlando, Florida at a United States Xtreme Wrestling event. They once again became tag team champions, defeating the Christopher Street Connection (Buff-E and Mace) to win the UXW Tag Team Championship.[44]

On Friday, February 22, 2008, both Ax & Smash were re-united and inducted into the XWF Hall of Fame by Jack Blaze who also inducted both New Jack & Shark Boy in the same night. Later that year, XWF became LPW (Legends Pro Wrestling) where Demolition are still honored as LPW Hall of Fame Inductees- Class 2008.

Demolition teamed with One Man Gang in the 28-team King of Trios tournament held by Chikara during the weekend of February 29 and March 1 and 2, 2008 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. While losing the three-man tournament they did win the Tag Team gauntlet.[47]

On November 13, 2010, Demolition appeared at WrestleRage VIII in Villa Park, Illinois with POWW Entertainment.[48] They beat the team of Picture Perfect for the POWW Tag Team titles, but quickly lost them after the first match to the team of Trevor Blanchard and Black Iron.

On May 21, 2011, Demolition reunited at Full Impact Pro's debut iPPV In Full Force. Their match against Tony DeVito and Ralph Mosco went to a no contest when local commentator and manager Larry Dallas came out and said his men wanted revenge. The ring was stormed by Manu, Sami Callihan, Blain Rage and Joey Attel. Demolition, Devito and Mosco managed to clear the ring and beat Dallas to end the show.[49]

On September 16, 2012, Demolition returned to Chikara, taking part in the tag team gauntlet match at the 2012 King of Trios tournament, from which they were eliminated by their old WWF rivals, The Powers of Pain.[50]

In 2013, Demolition are set to perform for the eastern Canadian independent promotion XWA. The former champions are scheduled to make appearances in Saint John (June 6), Fredericton (June 7), Miramichi (June 8), and Bathurst (June 9).

In November 2013, their finishing move was rated the 7th greatest Tag Team Finisher of All time.[51]

In wrestling[edit]

  • Entrance themes
    • Demolition used the entrance theme "Demolition," a rock track by Rick Derringer, which contained lyrics which introduced the original members of the team: "Here comes the Ax, and here comes the Smasher." The song was eventually released on Piledriver - The Wrestling Album 2. Initially, a rough instrumental version of the track was used in Spring 1987 before the full version was brought into use that summer. During the fall of 1990, the song was replaced with a dark, brooding instrumental track.

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x "Demolition Profile". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved April 11, 2008. 
  2. ^ "Bill Eadie's Profile". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved April 11, 2008. 
  3. ^ "Demolition Ax Bio". Accelerator's Wrestling Rollercoaster. Retrieved April 11, 2008. 
  4. ^ a b "Barry Darsow's Profile". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved April 11, 2008. 
  5. ^ a b "Barry Darsow Bio". Accelerator's Wrestling Rollercoaster. Retrieved April 11, 2008. 
  6. ^ a b "Brian Adams Bio". Accelerator's Wrestling Rollercoaster. Retrieved April 11, 2008. 
  7. ^ a b c "Demolition's WWE Alumni Profile". WWE. Retrieved April 20, 2012. 
  8. ^ a b "Randy Colley's Profile". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved April 11, 2008. 
  9. ^ a b c d e f "WWF Superstars of Wrestling Results (1986-1997)". Angelfire. Retrieved April 11, 2008. 
  10. ^ a b "World Tag Team Championship official title history". WWE. Retrieved April 12, 2008. 
  11. ^ "WWF Show Results 1987". Angelfire. March 14, 1987. Retrieved April 11, 2008. "Hercules won a 20-man battle royal by last eliminating Billy Jack Haynes when Haynes was distracted by Bobby Heenan on the ring apron; other participants included: Hulk Hogan, André the Giant, Ron Bass, B. Brian Blair & Jim Brunzell, Demolition, the Islanders, Billy Jack Haynes, Hillbilly Jim, the Honkytonk Man, Blackjack Mulligan, Paul Orndorff, Lanny Poffo, Butch Reed, Sika, Nikolai Volkoff, & Koko B. Ware" 
  12. ^ a b "WWF Prime Time Wrestling Results (1985-1996)". Angelfire. Retrieved April 11, 2008. 
  13. ^ "Survivor Series 1987 official results". WWE. November 26, 1987. Retrieved April 11, 2008. 
  14. ^ "WrestleMania IV official results". WWE. March 27, 1988. Retrieved April 11, 2008. 
  15. ^ a b "Demolition's first World Tag Team Championship reign". WWE. Retrieved April 11, 2008. 
  16. ^ "Saturday Night's Main Event results - April 30, 1988". WWE. April 30, 1988. Retrieved April 11, 2008. 
  17. ^ "SummerSlam 1988 official results". WWE. August 29, 1988. Retrieved April 11, 2008. 
  18. ^ "Saturday Night's Main Event results - October 29, 1988". WWE. October 29, 1988. Retrieved April 11, 2008. 
  19. ^ "Survivor Series 1988 official results". WWE. November 24, 1988. Retrieved April 11, 2008. 
  20. ^ "WWF Show Results 1988". Angelfire. November 24, 1988. Retrieved April 11, 2008. "The Powers of Pain, Bret Hart & Jim Neidhart, Davey Boy Smith & the Dynamite Kid, Jim Powers & Paul Roma, and Shawn Michaels & Marty Jannetty defeated WWF Tag Team Champions Demolition (w/Mr. Fuji), the Conquistadors, Arn Anderson & Tully Blanchard (w/Bobby Heenan), Jacques & Raymond Rougeau (w/Jimmy Hart), and Nikolai Volkoff & Boris Zhukov; Bret pinned Raymond Rougeau by blocking a backdrop attempt and using an inside cradle; Zhukov pinned Powers with the momentum of a flying crossbody put Zhukov on top; Jannetty pinned Zhukov with a sunset flip into the ring after a blow to the midsection by Michaels; Blanchard pinned Bret when Hart pinned himself with a German suplex into a bridge; Michaels & Jannetty fought Anderson & Blanchard to a double disqualification for brawling in the ring and eventually fighting to the backstage area; Smash pinned Dynamite with a clothesline after Dynamite missed a diving headbutt off the top; Demolition was counted-out after Mr. Fuji pulled the rope down, causing Smash to fall to the floor; the Barbarian pinned a Conquistador with a running headbutt off the ropes after Fuji tripped a Conquistador; after the match, Demolition cleared the ring of Powers of Pain and Fuji" 
  21. ^ "WrestleMania V official results". WWE. April 2, 1989. Retrieved April 12, 2008. 
  22. ^ "Big John Studd (spot No. 27) wins the Royal Rumble Match". WWE. January 15, 1989. Retrieved April 12, 2008. 
  23. ^ "Saturday Night's Main Event results - May 27, 1989". WWE. May 27, 1989. Retrieved April 12, 2008. 
  24. ^ "WWE World Tag Team Championship History". Hoffco-Inc. Retrieved April 12, 2008. 
  25. ^ "Saturday Night's Main Event results - July 18, 1989". WWE. July 18, 1989. Retrieved April 12, 2008. 
  26. ^ "SummerSlam 1989 official results". WWE. August 28, 1989. Retrieved April 12, 2008. 
  27. ^ a b "Demolition's second World Tag Team Championship reign". WWE. Retrieved April 12, 2008. 
  28. ^ "WrestleMania VI official results". WWE. April 1, 1990. Retrieved April 12, 2008. 
  29. ^ a b "Demolition's third World Tag Team Championship reign". WWE. Retrieved April 12, 2008. 
  30. ^ "WWE World Tag Team Championship History". Complete WWE. Retrieved April 12, 2008. "Ax & Smash regained the titles, but Crush joined and defended the titles with Smash." 
  31. ^ Bill Eadie, Barry Darsow (2007). Shoot Interview with Demolition (documentary) (DVD). RF Video. 
  32. ^ "Saturday Night's Main Event results - July 28, 1990". WWE. July 28, 1990. Retrieved April 12, 2008. 
  33. ^ "WWF Show Results 1990". Angelfire. July 28, 1990. Retrieved April 12, 2008. "WWF Tag Team Champions Smash & Crush (w/ Ax) defeated Shawn Michaels & Marty Jannetty at 9:31 when Ax interfered behind referee Joey Marella's back, hit a clothesline on Michaels as Michaels had Smash rolled up, and scored the pin; after the bout, both the Hart Foundation and the Legion of Doom came to the ring to dispute the decision" 
  34. ^ "SummerSlam 1990 official results". WWE. August 27, 1990. Retrieved April 12, 2008. 
  35. ^ "WWF Show Results 1990". WWE. August 27, 1990. Retrieved April 12, 2008. "Bret Hart & Jim Neidhart defeated WWF Tag Team Champions Demolition (Crush & Smash) at 14:24 in a Best 2 out of 3 falls match to win the titles; fall #1: Bret was pinned at 6:09 after sustaining the Decapitation; fall #2: the champions were disqualified at 10:06 after Crush physically prevented the referee from counting a pinfall on Smash after Smash sustained the Hart Attack; fall #3: Bret pinned Crush with a school boy roll up after Neidhart hit a slingshot shoulderblock into the ring, moments after the Legion of Doom came ringside and began brawling with Smash and an interfering Ax; pre-match stipulations stated that only two of the three members of Demolition was allowed at ringside but Ax came down mid-way through the contest and hid underneath the ring, eventually switching places with Smash without the referee noticing" 
  36. ^ "Saturday Night's Main Event results - October 13, 1990". WWE. October 13, 1990. Retrieved April 12, 2008. 
  37. ^ "Survivor Series 1990 official results". WWE. November 22, 1990. Retrieved April 12, 2008. 
  38. ^ "WrestleMania VII official results". WWE. March 24, 1991. Retrieved April 12, 2008. 
  39. ^ http://www.prowrestlinghistory.com/
  40. ^ http://www.cagematch.net/?id=28&nr=24&view=matches#matches
  41. ^ "SummerSlam 1992 official results". WWE. August 29, 1992. Retrieved April 12, 2008. "Crush def. Repo Man" 
  42. ^ "Demolition Online Onslaught article". Retrieved March 15, 2007. 
  43. ^ "1 wrestling article". Retrieved March 15, 2007. 
  44. ^ a b c Clevett, Jason (April 6, 2007). "Fans mingle with legends on 'Mania Day". Slam! Wrestling. Canadian Online Explorer. Retrieved April 6, 2007. 
  45. ^ Brian "Crush" Adams passes away; WWE; 2007-08-13; accessed 2007-08-13
  46. ^ "Cops: Wrestler's Wife Discovered Body". TMZ. August 13, 2007. Retrieved April 20, 2012. 
  47. ^ "Chikara King of Trios". Chikara. Retrieved February 4, 2007. 
  48. ^ http://www.powwentertainment.com
  49. ^ "Full Force 2011 results". Dragon Gate USA forum. Retrieved May 21, 2011. 
  50. ^ "Past results". Chikara. Retrieved September 16, 2012. 
  51. ^ The 15 greatest tag team finishers of all time

External links[edit]