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Greatest Tag Team feuds of the 80′s: The Rock ‘n’ Roll & Midnight Express

By : WrestlingDotCom News Posted on

The Rock ‘n’ Roll Express was a babyface tag team formed by Ricky Morton and Robert Gibson in 1983 in Memphis, TN. Their high flying moves in the ring along with their glam metal music gimmick took wrestling fans by storm.

The Rock ‘n’ Roll Express began their biggest feud in Mid-South Wrestling with the Midnight Express, consisting of Bobby Eaton, Dennis Condrey and Manager Jim Cornette. When the two team left Mid-South Wrestling, in 1985 for Jim Crockett Promotions and the National Wrestling Alliance, they continued their rivalry.

The Rock ‘n’ Roll Express would win the NWA Tag Team Titles on eight different occasions (but only four were recognized by World Championship Wrestling) Along with their feud with the Midnight Express, the Rock ‘n’ Express would also feud with the Four Horseman’s Ole and Arn Anderson. The Rock ‘n’ Roll Express would lose the NWA Tag Titles for the final time in the fall of 1987 against Arn Anderson and Tully Blanchard after outside interference from the Midnight Express.

In 1988, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express would depart The NWA/WCW and head to the American Wrestling Association where they had a brief feud with the Midnight Rockers which was unsuccessful. The Rock ‘n’ Roll Express would then return to WCW in 1991 as a mid-card tag team. At the Clash of Champions that year, Rick Morton would turn on his long time partner Robert Gibson, and join the heel faction, the York Foundation, change his name to Richard Morton and feud with Gibson, until WCW released him from his contract.

After Rick Morton left WCW, the team reunited in Smoky Mountain Wrestling in 1992 and feuded with the Heavenly Bodies, winning the SMW Tag Team Titles a total of nine times. The matches with the Heavenly Bodies were brutal, that included a barbed wire steel cage match and a Texas style death match.

1996 , the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express returned to WCW , but were only used on the B-shows such as WCW Saturday Night and WCW Pro as jobbers. In 1997, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express again left the promotion and wrestled for independent federations. One year later, the team wrestled briefly for then the World Wrestling Federation with Jim Cornette as a storyline of an NWA invasion.

In 1980, Southeast Championship Wrestling fans were introduced to The Midnight Express, then consisting of Dennis Condrey, Randy Rose and Norvell Austin. The team of Condrey and Rose soon became the Southeast NWA Tag Team Champions. The team also used the Freebird rule, that any of the three could team up, and wrestle and defend titles, would win the American Wrestling Association (AWA) tag team titles. In 1983 after a long title reign with SECW tag team titles after returning to the promotion, the Midnight Express would lose the titles to the Armstrong Brothers (Brad & Scott Armstrong). Eventually Condrey, Rose and Austin went their separate ways.

Soon thereafter, Bobby Eaton was sent to Mid-South Wrestling under Bill Watts in a talent trade that led to the formation of a new Midnight Express consisting of Dennis Condrey and Eaton with Jim Cornette as their manager. The first rivalry for the new Midnight Express was the team of Magnum T.A. and Mr. Wrestling II. The Midnight Express would win the tag titles when Mr. Wrestling II turned on Magnum T.A. With Magnum T.A. and Mr. Wrestling II split up, the Midnight Express needed a new feud, which was named to be the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express. To two teams had a big feud throughout 1984 before the Midnight Express left for another promotion.

In 1985, the Midnight Express signed with Jim Crockett Promotions and the NWA. Shortly after signing with the NWA, the Midnight Express re-started their feud with the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express who had already signed a deal with the company. In February 1986, the Midnight Express would defeat the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express for the NWA World Tag Team Championship.

In early 1987, Dennis Condrey left the NWA for reasons unknown. Dusty Rhodes and J.J. Dillon approached a former rival, Stan Lane who was wrestling in Florida. Business in Florida was not doing well at the time, so after having a meeting with Rhodes and Eaton, Lane made the jump to Jim Crockett Promotions, thus forming the most successful Midnight Express Team of “Beautiful” Bobby Eaton and “Sweet” Stan Lane. In May of 1987, the Midnight Express captured the NWA United States Tag Team Titles, then several months later, dropping them due to various creative differences as the Midnight Express and Cornette left the NWA. Following the purchase of the NWA by Ted Turner, which later became World Championship Wrestling, the Midnight Express would return.

After losing at the WCW Halloween Havoc Pay-Per View in 1990, the Midnight Express and Jim Cornette would split up and go their separate ways. Jim Cornette and Stan Lane would sign with the World Wrestling Federation, while Bobby Eaton would stay in WCW.

Rock ‘n’ Roll Express and Midnight Express facts:

Today in 2009, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express have joined Booker T’s Pro Wrestling Alliance in Houston, TX and even had a run as the PWA Tag Team Champions.

In 2005, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express and Midnight Express wrestled on June 7, 2008 and the NWA 60th Anniversary show in Atlanta, GA. The Rock ‘n’ Roll Express defeated the Midnight Express at the show.

In 2003, Bobby Eaton worked for the NWA Mid-Atlantic forming a new version of the Midnight Express with Ricky Nelson, which was short lived.

Source: Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia

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