AWA World Tag Team Championship
|AWA World Tag Team Championship|
The last version of the championship belts used
|Promotion||American Wrestling Association|
The American Wrestling Association (AWA) World Tag Team Championship was a professional wrestling world tag team championship in the American Wrestling Association from 1960 until the promotion folded in 1991.
When the NWA Minneapolis Wrestling and Boxing Club operated by Verne Gagne withdrew from the National Wrestling Alliance in May 1960, Stan Kowalski and Tiny Mills were the recognized champions of the NWA World Tag Team Championship (Minneapolis version). At the time, the AWA continued to recognize the NWA champions as their World champions. However, by August 1960, and having recently recaptured the NWA Tag Team championships for a second time, Kowalski and Mills were recognized as the first AWA World Tag Team Champions when AWA stopped recognizing NWA champions.
As the promotion grew, the AWA World Tag Team Championship became one of the most coveted tag team titles in the United States from the beginning until the late 1980s, when the AWA's talent roster was depleted by the World Wrestling Federation and Jim Crockett Promotions. This led to the retirement of the titles when the AWA closed.
|No.||Overall reign number|
|Reign||Reign number for the specific champion|
|Days||Number of days held|
|†||Championship change is unrecognized by the promotion|
|No.||Champion||Championship change||Reign statistics||Notes||Ref.|
(Stan Kowalski and Tiny Mills)
|August 1960||N/A||N/A||1||64[Note 1]||Kowalski and Mills were awarded the NWA World Tag Team Championship on August 1960. They were recognized as the first AWA champions when the AWA withdrew from the NWA and recognized its own champions.|
|2||Hard Boiled Haggerty and Len Montana / Gene Kiniski||October 4, 1960||Live event||Minneapolis, Minnesota||1||231||Montana suffered a broken leg in a match against Verne Gagne. On March 18, 1961, Haggerty chose Kiniski as his new partner.|
|3||Leo Nomellini and Wilbur Snyder||May 23, 1961||Live event||Minneapolis, Minnesota||1||57|||
|4||Hard Boiled Haggerty and Gene Kiniski||July 19, 1961||Live event||St. Paul, Minnesota||2||20|||
|—||Vacated||August 8, 1961||Live event||—||—||—||Title vacated after Haggerty and Kiniski split up when Haggerty's interference in a cage match between Kiniski and Verne Gagne backfires.|
|5||Hard Boiled Haggerty (3) and Bob Geigel||September 26, 1961||Live event||St. Paul, Minnesota||1||51||Haggerty defeated Kiniski for control of the titles and chose Geigel as his new partner.|
|6||Pat Kennedy and Dale Lewis||November 16, 1961||Live event||Rochester, Minnesota||1||7|
|7||Bob Geigel (2) and Otto Von Krupp||November 23, 1961||Live event||Rochester, Minnesota||1||39[Note 2]|||
|—||Vacated||January 1962||—||—||—||—||Title vacated when Von Krupp was injured.|
|8||Larry Hennig and Duke Hoffman||January 15, 1962||Live event||St. Paul, Minnesota||1||29||Defeated Ivan and Nikita Kalmikoff in a tournament final.|||
|9||Bob Geigel (3) and Stan Kowalski (2)||February 13, 1962||Live event||Minneapolis, Minnesota||1||47[Note 2]|
(Art Neilson and Stan Neilson)
|April 1962||N/A||Cincinnati, Ohio||1||259[Note 1]||This was a "phantom" title change, as no match actually took place.|
|11||Doug Gilbert and Dick Steinborn||December 16, 1962||Live event||St. Paul, Minnesota||1||16|
(Ivan and Karol)
|January 1, 1963||Live event||Minneapolis, Minnesota||1||231|
|13||The Crusher and Dick the Bruiser||August 20, 1963||Live event||Minneapolis, Minnesota||1||173|||
|14||Moose Evans and Verne Gagne||February 9, 1964||Live event||Minneapolis, Minnesota||1||14|||
|15||The Crusher and Dick the Bruiser||February 23, 1964||Live event||St. Paul, Minnesota||2||342|||
|16||Larry Hennig (2) and Harley Race||January 30, 1965||Live event||Minneapolis, Minnesota||1||175|
|17||The Crusher (3) and Verne Gagne (2)||July 24, 1965||Live event||Minneapolis, Minnesota||1||14|
|18||Larry Hennig (3) and Harley Race||August 7, 1965||Live event||Minneapolis, Minnesota||2||294|
|19||The Crusher (4) and Dick the Bruiser||May 28, 1966||Live event||Minneapolis, Minnesota||3||223|||
|20||Larry Hennig (4) / Chris Markoff and Harley Race||January 6, 1967||Live event||Chicago, Illinois||3||308||On November 1, 1967, Markoff replaced Hennig, who had his leg broken by Verne Gagne in Winnipeg, Manitoba.|
|21||Pat O'Connor and Wilbur Snyder (2)||November 10, 1967||Live event||Chicago, Illinois||1||22|
|22||Mitsu Arakawa and Dr. Moto||December 2, 1967||Live event||Chicago, Illinois||1||392|
|23||The Crusher (5) and Dick the Bruiser||December 28, 1968||Live event||Chicago, Illinois||4||245|
(Butcher and Mad Dog)
|August 30, 1969||Live event||Chicago, Illinois||1||623|
|†||The Von Steigers
(Karl Von Steiger and Kurt Von Steiger)
|February 23, 1971||Live event||Portland, Oregon||1†||23|
(Butcher and Mad Dog)
|March 18, 1971||Live event||Salem, Oregon||1(2)||58||Defeated The Von Steigers by D.Q.|
|25||Red Bastien and Hercules Cortez / The Crusher (6)||May 15, 1971||Live event||Milwaukee, Wisconsin||1||250||In August 1971, Bastien chose The Crusher as his new partner after Cortez was killed in a car accident on July 23.|
|26||Nick Bockwinkel and Ray Stevens||January 20, 1972||Live event||Denver, Colorado||1||345|||
|27||Verne Gagne (3) and Billy Robinson||December 30, 1972||Live event||Minneapolis, Minnesota||1||7|
|28||Nick Bockwinkel and Ray Stevens||January 6, 1973||Live event||St. Paul, Minnesota||2||561|
|29||The Crusher (7) and Billy Robinson (2)||July 21, 1974||Live event||Green Bay, Wisconsin||1||95|
|30||Nick Bockwinkel and Ray Stevens||October 24, 1974||Live event||Winnipeg, Manitoba||3||296|
|31||The Crusher (8) and Dick the Bruiser||August 16, 1975||Live event||Chicago, Illinois||5||342|
|32||Bobby Duncum and Blackjack Lanza||July 23, 1976||Live event||Chicago, Illinois||1||349|
|33||The High Flyers
(Jim Brunzell and Greg Gagne)
|July 7, 1977||Live event||Winnipeg, Manitoba||1||443|
|34||Pat Patterson and Ray Stevens (4)||September 23, 1978||N/A||N/A||1||256||Awarded the titles when Brunzell was injured in a charity softball game.|
|35||Verne Gagne (4) and Mad Dog Vachon (3)||June 6, 1979||Live event||Winnipeg, Manitoba||1||410|
(Adrian Adonis and Jesse Ventura)
|July 20, 1980||Live event||Denver, Colorado||1||329||Won by forfeit when Gagne no-showed scheduled defense.|
|37||The High Flyers
(Jim Brunzell and Greg Gagne)
|June 14, 1981||Live event||Green Bay, Wisconsin||2||742|
(Jerry Blackwell and Ken Patera)
|June 26, 1983||Live event||Minneapolis, Minnesota||1||315|
|39||The Crusher (9) and Baron Von Raschke||May 6, 1984||Live event||Green Bay, Wisconsin||1||111|||
|40||The Road Warriors
(Animal and Hawk)
|August 25, 1984||Live event||Las Vegas, Nevada||1||400|
|41||Jimmy Garvin and Steve Regal||September 29, 1985||Live event||St. Paul, Minnesota||1||111|
|42||Scott Hall and Curt Hennig||January 18, 1986||Live event||Albuquerque, New Mexico||1||119||"Phantom match" said to have occurred to cover for Regal leaving the company while still champion.|
|43||Buddy Rose and Doug Somers||May 17, 1986||AWA All-Star Wrestling||Hammond, Indiana||1||255|
|44||The Midnight Rockers
(Marty Jannetty and Shawn Michaels)
|January 27, 1987||Live event||St. Paul, Minnesota||1||118|
|45||Soldat Ustinov and Boris Zhukov / Doug Somers (2)||May 25, 1987||Live event||Lake Tahoe, Nevada||1||139||Somers replaced Zhukov on October 1987 after he jumped to the WWF.|||
|46||Bill Dundee and Jerry Lawler||October 11, 1987||CWA Live event||Memphis, Tennessee||1||8|
|47||Dr. D and Héctor Guerrero||October 19, 1987||CWA Live event||Memphis, Tennessee||1||7||Dr. D was local wrestler Carl Styles under a mask.|
|48||Bill Dundee and Jerry Lawler||October 26, 1987||CWA Live event||Memphis, Tennessee||2||4|
|49||The Original Midnight Express
(Dennis Condrey and Randy Rose)
|October 30, 1987||AWA Championship Wrestling||Whitewater, Wisconsin||1||58|||
|50||The Midnight Rockers
(Marty Jannetty and Shawn Michaels)
|December 27, 1987||AWA Championship Wrestling||Las Vegas, Nevada||2||83||Titles were held up on February 15, 1988, after a controversial match with The Rock 'n' Roll Express in Memphis. The Rockers won a rematch on February 22, 1988, also in Memphis, but this was never recognized and they remain two-time champions.|
(Paul Diamond and Pat Tanaka)
|March 19, 1988||AWA Championship Wrestling||Las Vegas, Nevada||1||371|
(Ken Patera (2) and Brad Rheingans)
|March 25, 1989||AWA Championship Wrestling||Rochester, Minnesota||1||177|
|—||Vacated||September 18, 1989||—||—||—||—||Title vacated when Patera was injured.|
|53||The Destruction Crew
(Wayne Bloom and Mike Enos)
|October 1, 1989||AWA Championship Wrestling||Rochester, Minnesota||1||314||Defeated Paul Diamond and Greg Gagne in a tournament final.|
|54||D.J. Peterson and The Trooper||August 11, 1990||AWA Championship Wrestling||Rochester, Minnesota||1||123||Pro Wrestling Illustrated withdrew recognition of World Championship status January 1991. Peterson and Trooper were from this point recognized only as "AWA Tag Team Champions".|||
|—||Deactivated||1991[Note 3]||—||—||—||—||The title became inactive when the AWA folded in 1991.|
List of top combined reigns
|Rank||Team||# Of Reigns||Combined Days|
|1.||The Crusher and Dick the Bruiser||5||1,325|
|2.||Nick Bockwinkel and Ray Stevens||3||1,202|
|3.||The High Flyers (Jim Brunzell and Greg Gagne)||2||1,185|
|4.||Harley Race and Larry Hennig / Chris Markoff[Note 4]||3||777|
|5.||Butcher and Mad Dog Vachon||2||623|
|6.||Verne Gagne and Mad Dog Vachon||1||410|
|7.||Road Warriors (Animal and Hawk)||1||400|
|8.||Mitsu Arakawa and Dr. Moto||1||392|
|9.||Badd Company (Paul Diamond and Pat Tanaka)||1||371|
|10.||Bobby Duncum and Blackjack Lanza||1||349|
|11.||The East-West Connection (Adrian Adonis and Jesse Ventura)||1||329|
|12.||The Sheiks (Jerry Blackwell and Ken Patera)||1||315|
|13.||The Destruction Crew (Wayne Bloom and Mike Enos)||1||314|
|14.||Art and Stan Nielson||1||259|
|15.||Pat Patterson and Ray Stevens||1||256|
|16.||Buddy Rose and Doug Somers||1||255|
|17.||Red Bastien and Hercules Cortez/The Crusher*[Note 5]||1||250|
|Rank||Wrestler||# Of Reigns||Combined Days|
|1.||The Crusher||9||1,717[Note 6]|
|3.||Dick the Bruiser||5||1,325|
|7.||Mad Dog Vachon||3||1033|
- There are no records of the day the reign began, only the month so the first day of the month is counted.
- There are no records of the day the reign ended, only the month so the first day of the month is counted.
- There are no records of the day or month this final reign ended, only the year.
- Chris Markoff replaced Larry Hennig in their third reign.
- The Crusher replaced Hercules Cortez after Cortez died from injuries sustained in a car accident.
- Combined length may not be correct. See above.
- Royal Duncan & Gary Will (2006). Wrestling Title Histories (4th ed.). Archeus Communications. ISBN 0-9698161-5-4.
- Hoops, Brian (May 23, 2015). "On this day in pro wrestling history (May 23): Antonio Inoki Vs. Hulk Hogan, Andre Vs. Sakaguchi, Frank Gotch in a 57-minute match". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved February 16, 2017.
- Hoops, Brian (July 19, 2015). "On this day in pro wrestling history (July 19): Kiniski wins third AWA title, Nash beats AJ Styles for TNA belt". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved February 11, 2017.
- Hoops, Brian (November 23, 2019). "Daily Pro Wrestling history (11/23): WWE Survivor Series 2014". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved November 24, 2019.
- Hoops, Brian (January 15, 2019). "Pro wrestling history (01/15): Big John Studd wins 1989 Royal Rumble". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved January 18, 2019.
- Hoops, Brian (August 20, 2015). "On this day in pro wrestling history (August 20): June Byers wins NWA Women's belt, Michael Shane wins TNA X-Division title". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved February 11, 2017.
- Hoops, Brian (February 9, 2017). "On this day in pro wrestling history (Feb 9): The Midnight Rider defeated Ric Flair". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved February 15, 2017.
- Hoops, Brian (February 23, 2017). "Daily pro wrestling history (02/23): WWE Elimination Chamber 2014". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved February 28, 2017.
- F4W Staff (May 28, 2015). "ON THIS DAY IN PRO WRESTLING HISTORY (MAY 28): HULK HOGAN VS. NICK BOCKWINKEL, BRUNO VS. SUPERSTAR GRAHAM DOUBLE DQ". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved February 10, 2017.
- Hoops, Brian (January 20, 2019). "Pro wrestling history (01/20): HHH returns, wins 2002 Royal Rumble". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved January 18, 2019.
- F4W Staff (May 6, 2015). "On this day in pro wrestling history (May 6): Verne Gagne Vs. Danny Hodge, 1st Annual Von Erich Parade of Champions show". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved February 10, 2017.
- Hoops, Brian (January 18, 2019). "Pro wrestling history (01/18): Ivan Koloff defeats Bruno Sammartino for WWWF title". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved January 18, 2019.
- Hoops, Brian (May 25, 2015). "On this day in pro wrestling history (May 25): Rockers last match in AWA, Tiger Mask wins NWA Jr. Heavyweight gold, Russian amateur wrestler beats Vader". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved February 19, 2017.
- Hoops, Brian (October 30, 2015). "DAILY PRO WRESTLING HISTORY (10/30): A SLEW OF TAG TEAM TITLES CHANGE HANDS". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved February 10, 2017.
- Hoops, Brian (February 22, 2017). "Daily pro wrestling history (02/22): Sting defeats Hogan to win vacant WCW title". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved February 27, 2017.
- Hoops, Brian (August 11, 2015). "On this day in pro wrestling history (August 11): Verne Gagne vs. Lou Thesz for AWA title, first ever G1 final". Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online. Retrieved February 18, 2017.
- PWI Strips the AWA of World Title Status Pro Wrestling Illustrated May 1991