May is Tag Team Appreciation Month at Wrestling Merchandise & Memories, with nearly 100 unique and interesting articles on the art of tag team wrestling.
We're looking at unique ways to present the art of tag team wrestling, and here's one aspect that we personally found kind of different.
After all, who has had more tag team partners over the past 40 years than WWE Hall of Famer Hulk Hogan? Mind you, he's probably had more partners turn on him than anyone else, too... but one Top 50 list at a time.
Some of the people on this list may surprise you, or perhaps you never thought that person had joined forces with The Hulkster - but they have,
In counting down the Top 50 Hulk Hogan Tag Team Partners, Wrestling Merchandise and Memories used the following criteria:
How big a match (or matches) were they partners for?
How well did the two get along (before the inevitable heel turn, that is)?
What kind of chemistry did they ultimately have?
If you'd like to be a part of this conversation, Tweet us at @canadianbulldog using the hashtag #Top50, or leave a comment below.
Ready? Here we go!
Iron Mike Sharpe
When did Hulk Hogan team with the patron saint of jabronies? Well, it turns out that Hogan and Iron Mike Sharpe teamed together at least a half a dozen times in Japan during tours in 1984 and 1985, taking on teams as impressive as Antonio Inoki and Riki Choshu. Sharpe would later lose to Hogan on WWF TV.
Long before Hulkamania was a thing, Hulk Hogan was more or less a rookie, perfecting his craft at smaller shows in the states of Tennessee, Indiana and Kentucky. There, Terry "The Hulk" Boulder teamed with Tommy Gilbert (Eddie's father) a half-dozen times against The Blond Bombers and other Southern staples.
When Hulk Hogan arrived in WCW and had to face Kevin Sullivan's Three Faces of Fear faction, he recruited Kevin's dyslexic "brother" Evad Sullivan, who had been a closet Hulkamaniac the entire time. The two battled together on live events as well as at Clash of the Champions.
Better known as Headshrinker Samu to North American audiences, Samoan Samula was a frequent partner of Hulk Hogan's in Japan in the mid-1980s. Although the team lost most of their MSG Tag League appearances by default in 1984, they continued to team afterwards.
Hulk Hogan and WWE Hall of Famer Don Muraco frequently tagged in New Japan circa 1981 and 1982, combining in traditional two-man teams, as well as three- and four-man combinations. Several years later, Muraco would end up on The Hulkster's team for the inaugural Survivor Series in 1987.
Hulk Hogan and Genichro Tenryu competed together on a show jointly promoted by the WWF and Super World Sports in 1991. The two legends lost to The Road Warriors by countout. Later that same year, Hogan defeated Tenryu on another WWF-SWS promotion.
For his WWF return in 1984, Hulk Hogan backed WWE Hall of Famer Bob Backlund in an attack against The Wild Samoans. Hogan and Backlund beat Mr. Fuji and Tiger Chung Lee the following week. Later, Hogan would take Backlund's rematch for the WWF World Title to begin the phenomenon of Hulkamania.
Koko B. Ware
While hardly frequent tag team partners, Hulk Hogan and WWE Hall of Famer Koko B. Ware did combine for a handful of matches in 1987. Ware was a substitute for the injured Jake "The Snake" Roberts against Kamala and The Honky Tonk Man.
While they never had their planned feud for the WWF World Title in 1994, Hulk Hogan and WWE Hall of Famer Bret Hart reconnected in WCW. By 1998, they teamed about a half-dozen times, most notably at that year's Great American Bash against Randy Macho Man Savage and Rowdy Roddy Piper.
Hercules and Hulk Hogan were often at odds with each other, including their Saturday Night's Main Event match. But when Hercules turned face in 1989, he and The Hulkster battled The Million Dollar Man Ted DiBiase and Virgil. They were also teammates at the 1989 Survivor Series.
Back when he was Terry "The Hulk" Boulder, Ox Baker was a frequent tag team partner in Memphis and the Southeast. Together, they took on Robert & Ron Fuller and other tag team combinations. In mid-1979, Baker turned on The Hulk and they began feuding, an occurrence that would happen frequently.
Big Boss Man
Hulk Hogan and WWE Hall of Famer Big Boss Man had a llengthy feud that included stops on the house show circuit in 1988 and 1989. By 1990, Boss Man was a face, and two heroes battled Mr. Perfect and The Genius, The Powers of Pain and on one occasion, tag team champions Andre The Giant and Haku.
Superfly Jimmy Snuka
Hulk Hogan and WWE Hall of Famer Superfly Jimmy Snuka were tag team partners beyond Snuka being in Hogan's corner at WrestleMania. Most notably, they tagged up against Rowdy Roddy Piper and Cowboy Bob Orton, as well as Orton and Magnificent Muraco.
As part of Hulk Hogan's WWE return in 2002, he teamed up with Triple H in a pair of matches before facing The Game for the title at that year's Backlash. They defeated the nWo trio of Kevin Nash, Scott Hall and X-Pac, and on SmackDown, they bested the duo of Chris Jericho and Kurt Angle.
The Ultimate Warrior
Leading up their WrestleMania VI encounter, Hulk Hogan and WWE Hall of Famer The Ultimate Warrior teamed up against The Genius and Mr. Perfect. Following WrestleMania, they teamed in the "match of survival" at Survivor Series 1990, and the following year against Sgt. Slaughter, Col. Mustafa and Gen. Adnan.
Bam Bam Bigelow
When Bam Bam Bigelow joined the WWF in 1987, his character seemed like the perfect companion to Hulk Hogan's. The two tagged against Andre The Giant and King Kong Bundy (and Bundy and Ted DiBiase). They were also teammates at that year's Survivor Series.
In the years leading to Hulk Hogan's nWo run in WCW, he and WWE Hall of Famer Sting teamed up to take on Ric Flair and Arn Anderson on Nitro in 1995. They also teamed on a pair on Monday Nitro episodes in 1999, facing the likes of Kevin Nash, Sid Vicious and Rick Steiner.
After three years of competing against each other over the WCW World Title, Hulk Hogan and The Giant put their differences aside in 1998 as members of the nWo. Together, they battled the team of Kevin Nash and Lex Luger, and Nash and Bill Goldberg on Monday Nitro.
WWE Hall of Famer Hillbilly Jim's origin story was that he was plucked from ringside by Hulk Hogan and trained by the champion, so it makes sense that they'd team up. In 1985, they battled The Moondogs and won a tag team battle royale and in 1986 they defeated the team of Big John Studd and King Kong Bundy.
Although Abyss only teamed with Hulk Hogan once, it was one of The Hulkster's final in-ring appearances and a big moment for TNA. In 2010, Hogan and The Monster took on Ric Flair and AJ Styles - a match that was stopped by outside interference and started again only to have a DQ finish.
During the height of the nWo in the late-1990s, Hollywood Hogan teaming up with basketball bad boy Dennis Rodman was a masterstroke. Together, Hogan and Rodzilla battled the team of Lex Luger and The Giant twice (once on Nitro and once at Bash at the Beach), as well as Diamond Dallas Page and Karl Malone.
When Hulk Hogan was injured by Earthquake in 1990, it was Tugboat who supported his fallen friend and ran a letter-writing campaign to encourage Hulk to get well soon. When he returned, the two faced Earthquake and Dino Bravo for several months on the house show circuit, as well as Rhythm & Blues.
Hulk Hogan shocked the world in 1996 when he turned against WCW and helped WWE Hall of Famers Kevin Nash and Scott Hall defeat Randy Savage, Sting and Lex Luger. Hogan and The Outsiders teamed up several times in various combinations of two, three and even four on both Monday Nitro and PPV's.
Hulk Hogan's one and only tag team championship win came in 2002 with WWE Hall of Famer Edge. The two defeated Billy and Chuck to win the WWE Tag Team Championship, defending it against the former champs as well as Kurt Angle and Chris Jericho, before dropping the belts to Lance Storm and Christian.
Hulk Hogan and WWE Hall of Famer Brutus The Barber Beefcake began teaming in 1979, when they were Terry and Eddie Boulder, respectively. They would team numerous times in the Memphis area, WWF and even WCW. In the latter promotion in 1994, Beefcake finally turned on Hogan, changing his name from The Barber to The Butcher.
Mean Gene Okerlund
Hulk Hogan teamed up with WWE Hall of Famer and Canadian Bulldog's World pitchman Mean Gene Okerlund in 1984, when the two took on George "The Animal" Steele and Mr. Fuji in Minnesota. The match itself wasn't anything special, but the hilarious "training" vignettes are definitely worth tracking down.
Hulk Hogan and WWE Hall of Famer Stan Hansen on the same page? It turns out Hogan and Hansen were frequent partners in Japan in 1980, even competing in the famed two-month New Japan Pro Wrestling MSG Tag League Round Robin Tournament, where the duo were upended in the final round.
The Great Muta
Hulk Hogan and The Great Muta joined forces for a fairly big match in Japan in September 1993 (in between his WWF and WCW contracts). Hogan teamed with Muta to defeat The Hellraisers (Road Warrior Hawk and Kensuke Sasaki) and then faced off against Muta just a few days later.
The Masked Superstar
Hulk Hogan and The Masked Superstar were frequent opponents in North America yet teamed up in Japan. In fact, in one 1984 bout the two challenged WWF Tag Team Champions Adrian Adonis and Dick Murdoch in a non-title match.
Baron Von Raschke
In the early 1980s in the AWA, Hulk Hogan was being targeted by villians such as Ken Patera, Jerry Blackwell and Bobby, so he often teamed up with veteran Baron Von Raschke to take on the heels.
Ricky The Dragon Steamboat
As two of the most popular performers in the mid-1980's, it makes sense that Hulk Hogan and WWE Hall of Famer Ricky The Dragon Steamboat would team up. They took on teams including The Magnificent Muraco and Mr. Fuji, King Kong Bundy and Bobby Heenan, and Randy Savage and The Honky Tonk Man.
While Ken Patera was a frequent opponent of Hulk Hogan's in the AWA and WWF, it wasn't until 1987 when Patera returned to the WWF and he and Hogan teamed up to battle various members of the Bobby Heenan Family.
Jerry The King Lawler
When Hulk Hogan was still Terry "The Hulk" Boulder in the late-1970s, he found himself tagging up frequently with WWE Hall of Famer Jerry "The King" Lawler. Together, they two conquered Austin Idol and Toru Tanaka and the combination of The Mongolian Stomper and Gorgeous George Jr.
Long before he donned the mask as Mr. America, Hulk Hogan had another (equally) secret identity as Hulk Machine in 1986. The hooded vigilante teamed up with Big Machine (Blackjack Mulligan) and Super Machine (Demolition Ax) to take on Big John Studd, King Kong Bundy and Bobby Heenan.
When WWE Hall of Famer Tito Santana was in the AWA, he began teaming up with Hulk Hogan to battle Ken Patera, Bobby Duncum and other members of the Heenan Family. The two were also both finalists in the 1990 "match of survival" at Survivor Series.
The High Flyers
In 1981, Hulk Hogan was one of the hottest babyfaces in the AWA, along with The High Flyers (Jim Brunzell and Greg Gagne). Together, they took on Crusher Blackwell and The East-West Connection (Adrian Adonis and Jesse Ventura) several times that fall.
Hacksaw Jim Duggan
Hulk Hogan and WWE Hall of Famer Hacksaw Jim Duggan are both fiercely patriotic, and they've tagged up more frequently than one may think. Among the teams they've been pitted against: The Million Dollar Man Ted DiBiase and Virgil, Randy Macho Man Savage and Dino Bravo, and Sgt. Slaughter and Col. Mustafa.
Arguably the two biggest babyfaces in wrestling history, Hulk Hogan and John Cena have tagged up before, albeit usually in six-man tag team action. Their partners included Shawn Michaels and Batista, and they went after the likes of Chris Jericho, John Bradshaw Layfield, Christian and Kurt Angle.
Some time after WWE Hall of Famer Bill Goldberg defeated Hollywood Hogan for the WCW World Championship, the two participated in a handful of tag team matches as babyfaces, including against The Jersey Triad (Diamond Dallas Page, Kanyon and Bam Bam Bigelow).
Everyone rememers Hulk Hogan and The Rock's epic match at WrestleMania X-8, but fewer people recall how they began teaming up following the contest. In fact, the two battled the nWo's Kevin Nash, Scott Hall and X-Pac a handful of times in 2002, and they also joined forces to battle Chris Jericho and Kurt Angle that year.
Hulk Hogan and WWE Hall of Famer Shawn Michaels teamed in 2005 for a trio of tag team matches. Together, they battled the team of Muhammad Hassan and Shawn Daivari, and (with John Cena) the trio of Chris Jericho, Christian and Tyson Tomko. After their third teaming, Michaels turned on The Hulkster.
Hulk Hogan and WWE Hall of Famer Antonio Inoki (arguably the Hulk Hogan of Japan) were frequent partners in 1982 in New Japan Pro Wrestling. They battled the likes of Andre The Giant, Dick Murdoch, Scot McGhee, El Canek, Sgt. Slaughter and The Masked Superstar.
Believe it or not, Sid turned on Hulk Hogan in tag team matches not once but twice. The first time was on Saturday Night's Main Event in 1992 following their match against Ric Flair and The Undertaker. Eight years later on Monday Nitro, Sid turned on Hogan after their match with Jeff Jarrett and Scott Steiner.
Although Hogan was brought into WCW by Eric Bischoff (and the two have collaborated on several projects since then), the two only teamed up once, albeit for a very high-profile match. At Road Wild in 1998, the two nWo leaders battled the equally-unlikely duo of Diamond Dallas Page and Jay Leno.
Rowdy Roddy Piper
Hulk Hogan vs. Rowdy Roddy Piper was the top wrestling rivalry of the 1980's, so when they began teaming up in late-1986, it made headlines. Together, they battled teams consisting of Paul Orndorff, Harley Race, Cowboy Bob Orton, Magnificent Muraco, Hercules, Kamala, Adrian Adonis, Sid and Ric Flair.
The Junkyard Dog
It was a match made right out of Rock 'n' Wrestling heaven whenever Hulk Hogan joined forces with WWE Hall of Famer The Junkyard Dog. In early 1986, the two battled The Funk Brothers, as well as King Kong Bundy and Big John Studd.
WWE Hall of Famer Mr. T tagged up with Hulk Hogan once, but the stakes don't get much bigger than the main event of the first WrestleMania, where the two pop culture icons defeated Rowdy Roddy Piper and Paul Orndorff. T was also in Hogan's corner for several high-profile matches in the 80s and 90s.
Andre The Giant
When Hulk Hogan was first named WWF World Champion, WWE Hall of Famer Andre The Giant was one of the first people to congratulate him. So it made sense that they would tag up once in a while against Big John Studd and King Kong Bundy and the trio of Studd, Adrian Adonis and Dick Murdoch - all before Andre turned on Hogan in 1986.
Following the first WrestleMania, Paul Orndorff put his differences aside with Hulk Hogan and they teamed to take on Rowdy Roddy Piper and Cowboy Bob Orton on the live event circuit. They had several other matches until Mr. Wonderful turned on Hogan during a televiseed match against King Kong Bundy and Big John Studd in 1986.
Hulk Hogan and WWE Hall of Famer Randy Savage created one of the biggest superteams in wrestling history. Created in 1987 at the behest of Savage's manager Miss Elizabeth, The Mega Powers took on the forces of evil for almost a year. Predictably, Savage turned on Hogan during the winter of 1989, setting up for an epic feud that began at WrestleMania V and went on for several years.