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The Assassins were a masked professional wrestling tag team from the 1960s to the 1980s. Jody Hamilton, the original Assassin, was a member throughout the various incarnations of the team, teaming with Tom Renesto, Roger Smith, Randy Colley and Hercules Hernandez while donning the masks.
The team had its origins in 1961 in the Georgia territory, when Hamilton, a five-year veteran, first began competing in Atlanta, Georgia as the Assassin. Shortly afterward, Tom Renesto arrived in the area and began teaming with Hamilton to form the original Assassins team.
Hamilton and Renesto became a well-traveled heel tandem through the 1960s, competing in the Mid-Atlantic territory, Georgia, Florida, California, Arizona, the Pacific Northwest, Canada, Japan and Australia among other areas, and winning championship gold along the way. They returned to Georgia in 1968 and competed in that state primarily until 1974; they spent most of their time competing in Georgia Championship Wrestling during that period, but they also went to work for an independent group called the All-South Wrestling Alliance, with Hamiilton going solo in the beginning while Renesto worked behind the scenes, then facing off in opposite corners from each other, then reuniting as babyfaces before All-South closed in late-1974.
After Renesto retired from the ring, Hamilton continued The Assassins with new partners in later years, teaming up with Roger Smith and then Randy Colley, before forming the 1980s version of the masked team with Hercules Hernandez in Jim Crockett Promotions, under the management of Paul Jones, who used them as part of his feud with the popular Jimmy Valiant. That version of the team lasted until Hernandez was unmasked after losing to Valiant in a mask vs. hair match at a JCP/Maple Leaf Wrestling show in Toronto, Ontario on April 15, 1984. Hamilton continued on solo after Hernandez left JCP, breaking his ties with Jones to turn babyface once again and feud with his former manager, which climaxed with Hamilton teaming with Buzz Tyler to beat Jones' Zambuie Express (Elijah Akeem and Kareem Muhammed) at Starrcade 1984 in Greensboro, North Carolina.
Jody Hamilton wound down his in-ring career in the Alabama territory competing under a different identity as The Flame before starting up his own promotion in Georgia, Deep South Wrestling, in 1986, which he ran for about two years before selling the promotion. He then opened up the Power Plant as a training facility for World Championship Wrestling and was last seen reprising his Assassin role as the manager of Pretty Wonderful (Paul Orndorff and Paul Roma) in WCW in 1994. Hamilton reopened Deep South Wrestling in 2005 to serve as a developmental territory for World Wrestling Entertainment, but WWE severed its developmental deal with DSW on April 18, 2007, and Hamilton has continued running the promotion on his own as an independent.
Randy Colley went on to form The Moondogs tag team (as Moondog Rex), which competed in the then-WWF and in the Memphis area, and he was also the original Demolition Smash. He retired several years ago.
Roger Smith went on to fame in Memphis in the mid-1980s under the ring name Dirty Rhodes (for his resemblance to Dusty Rhodes in both appearance and mannerisms), both as a heel and a babyface. He has also since retired.
Hercules Hernandez went on to fame under that name in World Class Championship Wrestling, Florida, the WWF and Japan, and as the Super Invader in WCW. He died in his sleep of a heart attack in Tampa, Florida on March 6, 2004 at age 47.
Championships and accomplishments
Hamilton and Renesto
- NWA Canadian Tag Team Championship (Vancouver version) (2 times)
- NWA World Tag Team Championship (Vancouver version) (1 time)