On this week’s episode of Raw, we witnessed the return of one of the fiercest tandems in WWE The Authors of Pain (AOP). Yes, I said fiercest despite how WWE has booked them since debuting on the main roster. Akam and Rezar haven’t been seen since the June 18th episode of SmackDown Live when they were involved in the 24/7 Championship drama. Oh, how the mighty have fallen.
AOP flanked by their manager Paul Ellering burst onto the scene at NXT TakeOver: The End where they obliterated American Alpha after losing the NXT Tag Team Championships to The Revival. Akam and Rezar immediately ran roughshod over the tag team division. They were extremely impressive from winning the 2016 Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic, to becoming the most dominant NXT Tag Team Champions to date.
On the Post-Mania 34 Raw, AOP would make their main roster debut by defeating the inaugural SmackDown Tag Team Champions Heath Slater and Rhyno. Following their first victory, Akam and Rezar cut ties with Ellering which would prove to be the downfall of the team. SIX MONTHS LATER AOP would finally return to live television with a brand-new manager the 205 Live General Manager Drake Maverick.
There was speculation that the main reason AOP was called-up to the main roster, was because WWE was looking to have a first-ever Tag Team Championship Money in the Bank Ladder Match that never happened. I can understand Akam and Rezar being placed on the sidelines for a few weeks but six months really? On November 5, 2018 episode of Raw, AOP would become Raw Tag Team Champions by defeating Seth Rollins in a two-on-one handicap match.
Roughly a month later they would lose the tag titles in a despicable three-on-two handicap match along with their manager Maverick who took the pinfall loss for the team. These two powerhouses have been so criminally mistreated since arriving on the main roster that it’s baffling. To say that AOP needed a full reset would be an understatement.
On last night’s episode of Raw, Akam and Rezar delivered a fantastic backstage interview wearing suits looking like the Mafia. For the first time in a very long time, AOP appeared confident while running down all the other tag teams in WWE.
I am hoping and praying that Akam and Rezar will finally be given the chance to demonstrate how powerful they truly can be. Now that we have brand-new Raw Tag Team Champions and without any challengers, AOP should be next in line for a title shot.