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Natural Disasters

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The Natural Disasters were a tag team composed of Earthquake (John Tenta) and Typhoon (Fred Ottman) who competed in the World Wrestling Federation as a team between 1991 and 1993.

The Formation

In the summer of 1991, Earthquake had just finished a feud with Jake “The Snake” Roberts when he seemingly reignited a feud from 1990 with the massive Tugboat, a fan favorite and close friend of Hulk Hogan. In a televised 6 man tag-team match where Earthquake teamed with the Nasty Boys and Tugboat teamed with The Bushwhackers Tugboat turned on his partners after a few minutes of action and joined the Earthquake in laying the two New Zealanders out cold with a big splash. After the heel turn Tugboat changed his name to Typhoon and together they became known as “The Natural Disasters” one of the heaviest tag-teams in the world.

The first order of business was the Bushwhackers, whom they made very short work of at the 1991 SummerSlam PPV. After destroying the Bushwhackers the Disasters targeted André the Giant who was at ringside on crutches due to an injury. The assault was stopped by the Legion of Doom who ran off the Natural Disasters and kicked off the Legion of Doom / Natural Disasters feud. Later in the night the Legion of Doom would go on to win the WWF World Tag-Team titles from the Nasty Boys, which meant that the Natural Disasters became first in line to get a shot at the new champions.

The first big profile meeting between the two teams came at the 1991 Survivor Series where they were on opposing sides in an elimination match. Typhoon was eliminated due to a miscommunication with team member Irwin R. Schyster followed by Earthquake walking out with him, leaving the Legion of Doom as the eventual winners the Disasters challenged for the tag-team titles on the house show circuit but usually without a decisive outcome. At the 1992 Royal Rumble the Disasters got their biggest opportunity so far as they received a shot at the titles. The Disasters won the match via count out but not the titles.

The Turn

In February Natural Disasters' manager Jimmy Hart led Money Inc. (Ted DiBiase & Irwin R. Schyster) to the WWF tag-team titles as they defeated the Legion of Doom after which the L.O.D. briefly left the WWF. The Natural Disasters were outraged that their manager would go behind their backs and get another team a shot at the title, the storyline explanation was that Jimmy Hart used the Disasters' guaranteed return match for Money Inc. When the Natural Disasters challenged Money Inc. they won the fan support as they fired manager Jimmy Hart. The Disasters would first get their hands on Money Inc. at WrestleMania VIII where once again the Natural Disasters would win the match but not the titles as the champions were counted out. The Disasters did not let the setback stop them as they challenged for the titles repeatedly until they won them on July 20, 1992.

After losing the titles Money Inc. had to focus on the challenges by the Legion of Doom, which gave the Natural Disasters the opportunity to defend their newly won titles against new competition. That competition came in the form of The Beverly Brothers (managed by The Genius), whom they defeated at SummerSlam 1992, the Disasters' first PPV pinfall in a year. Afterwards, the Disasters faced challenges by both the Nasty Boys and Money Inc., both managed by Jimmy Hart. In a series of events that mirrored how the Natural Disasters turned face the Nasty Boys turned on Jimmy Hart when Hart favored Money Inc. when signing title matches. The Nasty Boys turned on Hart, while Money Inc. regained the tag-team titles from the Natural Disasters in October 1992. With the Nasty Boys also in the hunt for the tag-team gold the Natural Disasters were slowly phased out of the tag-team division with their last PPV outing as a team came at the 1992 Survivor Series PPV where they were eliminated by Money Inc.

In 1993 Earthquake and Typhoon began showing signs of dissention, most noticeably at the 1993 Royal Rumble Typhoon was already in the ring when Earthquake entered as #23 and he immediately went after his tag-team partner, focusing only on him until Typhoon was eliminated. The Disasters’ feud never came to fruition as Earthquake left the WWF very early in 1993.

After the break up

Typhoon briefly stayed with the WWF after Earthquake left but never made anything as a singles competitor. Then, in mid-1993 he signed with WCW and made his infamous debut as The Shockmaster. He would later find himself in the WWF for a brief stay as Typhoon but again did not rise above mid card.

Earthquake travelled to Japan in 1993 but made a very brief return in 1994 to engage in a “Sumo Vs Sumo” feud with Yokozuna. For the few months Earthquake was in the WWF no mention of the tag-team was made. Earthquake briefly returned to the WWF in 1998 as Golga, a masked mute in the Human Oddities Stable.

In 2001 the WWF hosted a sort of reunion of the Natural Disasters as they were both involved in the Gimmick Battle Royal of WrestleMania X-Seven, but Fred Ottman wrestled as Tugboat instead of Typhoon. Commentator Bobby Heenan, however, did allude to their previous alliance. Also, it was Earthquake who wound up eliminating Tugboat.

In wrestling

  • Signature moves
    • Typhoon hits a high impact corner body splash and keeps the opponent cornered while Earthquake splashes his back, crushing the opponent with the impact of both of their weights

Championships and accomplishments

See also

External links

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