The Shining Stars (formerly Los Matadores and Primo & Epico) are a professional wrestling tag team performing in WWE consisting of Primo and Epico. The duo, who are real life cousins hailing from Puerto Rico, are former WWE Tag Team Champions, with the title won during their first run as Primo & Epico, from 2011 to 2013.
Primo & Epico; Tag Team Champions (2011–2013)
On the November 4 episode of SmackDown, Epico debuted on the main roster as a heel and realigned with Hunico, his former partner from when both were masked in FCW. On the November 11 episode of Smackdown, Primo, Epico's real-life cousin, was in the corner of Epico when he teamed with Hunico in a winning effort against The Usos. On the November 17 episode of Superstars, Epico and Primo beat The Usos. On the December 1 episode of Superstars, Rosa Mendes aligned herself with the group as their valet, as they were officially moved to the Raw brand and quietly disassociated from Hunico.
Epico and Primo then began a feud with WWE Tag Team Champions Air Boom, beating both Evan Bourne and Kofi Kingston in singles matches, followed by two victories for Epico and Primo against Air Boom during non-title tag team matches on December 13 at WWE Tribute to the Troops and the December 15 episode of Superstars. This earned Epico and Primo a shot at the titles at TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs pay-per-view, but were unsuccessful.
Epico and Primo's feud with Air Boom continued with Air Boom triumphant in singles matches, while Epico and Primo obtained yet another victory in an non-title tag match. At a Raw live event on January 15, 2012, Epico and Primo defeated Air Boom to win the WWE Tag Team Championship. The following night on Raw, Epico and Primo successfully defended their titles in a rematch. On the January 20 episode of SmackDown, Epico and Primo defeated The Usos in a non-title tornado tag team match.
Primo & Epico would go on earn victories in non-title matches, defeating various teams such as Jim Duggan & Santino Marella, Mason Ryan & Alex Riley and The Usos; however, Primo & Epico would suffer non-title losses against the team of Kofi Kingston & R-Truth. On the February 27 edition of Raw, Primo & Epico successfully defended their titles in a Triple Threat tag team match against the teams of Kingston & R-Truth and Dolph Ziggler & Jack Swagger. In the pre-show of WrestleMania XXVIII, Primo & Epico successfully defended their titles in a triple threat tag team match against the Usos and Justin Gabriel & Tyson Kidd. After WrestleMania, Primo & Epico suffered non-title losses to the teams of Big Show & The Great Khali and Santino Marella & Zack Ryder. Also, A.W. began offering his managerial services to the team, pointing out that the tag champions had been treated like jokes, being left off WrestleMania and Extreme Rules. At the April 30 Raw, Primo & Epico lost the tag titles to Kingston & Truth.
After losing the titles, Primo, Epico and Mendes joined A.W.'s talent agency in May. However, after joining "All World Promotions", Primo & Epico would not wrestle on television until the No Way Out pay-per-view on 17 June. At No Way Out, it was revealed that Primo & Epico's 30-day rematch clause for the tag titles had expired, and that the duo had to compete in a four-way match against the teams of Justin Gabriel & Tyson Kidd, the Usos and the Prime Time Players (Titus O'Neil & Darren Young) to earn another title shot. During the match, A. W. betrayed Primo & Epico, directly costing them the match and aligning with the match winners, the Prime Time Players. At the following Raw, Primo & Epico defeated the Players by count-out after O'Neil and Young walked out of the match. Primo & Epico would wrestle as babyfaces for their feud against the Prime Time Players. The tag teams would continue their feud on Superstars with Epico losing to Young and Primo beating both O'Neil and Young in singles matches. At Money in the Bank, Primo & Epico defeated the Prime Time Players. On the August 10 SmackDown, Primo & Epico faced the Players in a #1 contender match and were disqualified when champions Kingston & Truth attacked the Players; A.W. was released from WWE between that episode's taping and airing.
After Primo & Epico ended their feud with the Prime Time Players in August, they reverted to being heels during a victory over the Usos. Primo & Epico then went on to lose every televised match for the rest of 2012, with losses to Kingston & Truth, the Players, Rey Mysterio, Jr. & Sin Cara, Team Co-Bro (Santino Marella & Zack Ryder), Team Rhodes Scholars, The Usos and to both Ryback and The Great Khali in handicap matches. At the Survivor Series pay-per-view, Primo & Epico took part in a 10-man elimination tag team match, but were eliminated by Tyson Kidd and Rey Mysterio. By the first SmackDown of 2013, Primo was on a 20 match losing streak, and Epico was at 17. On the January 9 NXT, Primo & Epico broke their losing streaks with a win over Bo Dallas & Michael McGillicutty, their first win in months.However, Dallas & McGillicutty gained revenge by defeating Primo & Epico in the first round of the NXT Tag Team Championship tournament to crown the inaugural champions.
Los Matadores (2013–2015)
In August 2013, WWE hyped the debut of Los Matadores, and on the September 30 Raw, Primo and Epico debuted new characters, as Diego and Fernando of Los Matadores, a face team of two masked Spanish bullfighters with El Torito as mascot as they defeated 3MB. It was the start of a winning streak that featured nine wins over 3MB (with El Torito wrestling in some matches), and also over The Real Americans (Antonio Cesaro and Jack Swagger) at Hell in a Cell. Also, El Torito was able to interfere in matches without incurring a disqualification for Los Matadores. Los Matadores' winning streak was finally snapped on the January 24 SmackDown in 2014, courtesy of Curtis Axel and Ryback. On the March 5 edition of WWE Main Event, Los Matadores received a tag team championship match against The Usos in which they were defeated. They also made an appearance as Primo and Epico alongside Carlito to induct Carlos Colon into the WWE Hall of Fame Class of 2014. On the WrestleMania XXX pre-show, they received a WWE Tag Team Championship shot against The Usos, RybAxel, and The Real Americans, in a Fatal Four-Way Elimination Tag Team match, but lost after being the first team eliminated when Fernando submitted to Jack Swagger's Patriot Lock. On June 23 WWE.com reported that Fernando was injured at a live event that past weekend. The team would return on August 19 on an edition of Main Event in a losing effort against Titus O'Neil and Heath Slater. On October 7, Los Matadores competed on the 15th Anniversary of Smackdown, alongside their mascot El Torito, The Usos, Jack Swagger, Mark Henry, and Sheamus in a winning effort against Goldust, Stardust, Heath Slater, Titus O'Neil, Bo Dallas, The Miz, and Hornswoggle. They later competed at Survivor Series in a fatal four-way tag team match for the WWE Tag Team Championship. Los Matadores were unsuccessful as The Miz and Damien Mizdow were victorious and became the new WWE Tag Team Champions. On March 5, 2015, Los Matadores challenged Cesaro and Tyson Kidd for the WWE Tag Team Championship on an edition of Smackdown in a losing effort. A few weeks later, Los Matadores competed on the pre-show of Wrestlemania XXXI in the fatal four-way tag team match for the WWE Tag Team Championship. Once again, Cesaro and Tyson Kidd were victorious. Los Matadores then competed in the Andre the Battle Royal later on in the pre-show. Diego and Fernando were both eliminated by Kane. On May 31, Los Matadores competed in the first-ever tag team Elimination Chamber match for the WWE Tag Team Championship. Los Matadores were the first team eliminated, being eliminated by The Ascension.
At SummerSlam (2015), Los Matadores competed in a Fatal 4-Way Tag Team Match for the WWE Tag Team Championship in a losing effort when they were pinned by The New Day to lose the Prime Time Players their titles. On September 7, 2015 episode on Raw after losing to the Dudley Boyz, Los Matadores turned heel when Diego attacked El Torito after the match, however he was then put through a table by the Dudleys. They were last seen on Main Event that week, minus El Torito, where they were defeated by The Prime Time Players.
The Shining Stars (2016–present)
On the April 4, 2016 episode of Raw, a promotional video aired to promote the return of the duo, who were no longer under the Los Matadores masks and revived their Puerto Rican gimmick. Two weeks later, another video confirmed they had reverted to the names of Primo & Epico. On the May 9, 2016 episode of Raw, another video confirmed that they would return the following week, under the new tag team name The Shining Stars. On the May 16 episode of Raw, The Shining Stars debuted by defeating a local tag team Scott Jackson and Brian Kennedy (actually independent tag team that regularly appear in NXT, John Skyler and Corey Hollis) in a squash match. They finished the match with their tag team finishing move, The Shining Star.
- Primo's finishing moves
- Backstabber (Double knee backbreaker)
- Epico's finishing moves
- Double team finishing moves
- As The Shining Stars
- The Shining Star (Legsweep (Primo) / Jumping enzuigiri (Epico) combination)
- As Los Matadores
- El Picador (Double reverse Samoan drop)
- Powerbomb / Double knee backbreaker combination
- As Primo & Epico
- Backstabber / Double Backstabber (Double knee backbreaker, sometimes in stereo)
- As The Shining Stars
- Entrance themes