The Heavenly Bodies (1990s tag team)

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The Heavenly Bodies
Tag team
Members Justin and Dustin Corino
Former
member(s)
Tom Prichard
Stan Lane
Jimmy Del Ray
Bobby Eaton
Eddie Golden
K.C. Thunder
Vito DeNucci
Chris Nelson
Debut 1992
Disbanded 1995
Years active 1992-2008

The Heavenly Bodies was a professional wrestling tag team famous for having worked in Smoky Mountain Wrestling, the World Wrestling Federation, and various independent promotions. It effectively served as a 'spiritual' continuation/expansion of The Midnight Express post WCW. Over the years, there have been multiple variations of the team, which has at different times consisted of "Doctor" Tom Prichard, "Sweet" Stan Lane, "Beautiful" Bobby Eaton, as well as "Gigolo" Jimmy Del Ray, and was led by Heel Manager James E. Cornette.

History

Prichard and Lane

In 1992, veteran wrestlers Tom Prichard and Stan Lane first formed The Heavenly Bodies in Smoky Mountain Wrestling (SMW). Managed by Jim Cornette, Prichard and Lane became the first ever SMW Tag Team Champions. Later into the promotion, following his departure from World Championship Wrestling (WCW), Bobby Eaton was added to the team. Manager Jim Cornette explained that any two of the three men could defend the belts at any given time, as he had registered the Heavenly Bodies with SMW as a 'Corporation'.

During their tenure in SMW, The Heavenly Bodies had long running feuds with the likes of The New Fantastics (Bobby Fulton and Jackie Fulton) and The Rock 'n' Roll Express (Ricky Morton and Robert Gibson). Their feuds were often highlighted with hardcore matches and numerous title changes. A cross-promotional deal with WCW allowed The Heavenly Bodies to appear at the SuperBrawl III pay-per-view event on February 21, 1993. They lost their match to The Rock 'n' Roll Express. The 'Bodies', as a group, briefly held both the Tag Titles and the TV Title (SMW's secondary Championship).

Prichard and Del Ray

In May 1993, Lane left the team after losing a loser-of-the-fall leaves town match. The core duo continued with Lane replaced by Pritchard's "cousin" "Gigolo" Jimmy Del Ray. Over the next few years, the new duo competed not only in SMW but also in the World Wrestling Federation (WWF), Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW), and United States Wrestling Association (USWA). They continued their feud with The Rock 'n' Roll Express in these promotions and began new rivalries with The Steiner Brothers (Rick and Scott Steiner), and The Smoking Gunns (Bart and Billy Gunn).[1]

In July 1993, SMW's unique cross-promotional deal with the WWF allowed The Heavenly Bodies and The Rock 'n' Roll Express to wrestle on the two organization's pay-per-view shows.[2][3] SMW formed a working agreement with the WWF that allowed The Heavenly Bodies to appear on WWF programming. Prichard and Del Ray unsuccessfully challenged for the WWF Tag Team Championship at SummerSlam 1993[1] but captured the SMW Tag Team Championship against The Rock 'n' Roll Express three months later at Survivor Series 1993.[4]

During their time in the WWF, they wrestled a tour for All Japan Pro Wrestling in May 1994, and returned to SMW in the summer of 1994 to feud with teams like The Rock 'n' Roll Express, The Thrillseekers (Chris Jericho and Lance Storm) and The Gangstas (New Jack and Mustafa Saed).

In 1995, The Bodies defeated PG-13 (J.C. Ice and Wolfie D) to capture the USWA Tag Team Championship. Later in the year, Prichard and Del Ray also competed in ECW,[1] aligning themselves with Raven (see Raven's Nest) to face off against The Public Enemy (Rocco Rock and Johnny Grunge). Following the November 1995 closure of SMW, The Heavenly Bodies disbanded. Their last match as a team occurred in ECW on December 9, 1995, losing to The Public Enemy. Prichard joined the WWF as Zip of The Bodydonnas while Del Ray competed on the independent circuit and WCW as "Jimmy Graffti".

DeNucci and Nelson

A new Heavenly Bodies team began to compete on the independent circuit around 2000. The New Heavenly Bodies, comprising "Vivacious" Vito DeNucci and "Casanova" Chris Nelson captured the NWA World Tag Team Championship three times, and on occasion, "Gigolo" Jimmy Del Ray serve as their manager.[5] DeNucci and Nelson once were the longest reigning NWA World Tag Team champions, but have since been surpassed by America's Most Wanted. The duo occasionally appear on various independent wrestling shows. The team also wrestled in IPW as Drunk and Disorderly; as well as holding the NWA World Tag Team Championships three times, they have also held the IPW Tag Team Championships among others.

On April 3, 2010 the New Heavenly Bodies defeated the Dark City Fight Club (Jon Davis and Kory Chavis) to win the NWA Florida Tag Team Championship.[6] On April 16 DeNucci and Nelson lost the titles back to the Dark City Fight Club.

Golden and Thunder

Eddie Golden and K.C. Thunder, former rivals in Southern States Wrestling, teamed together as The Heavenly Bodies throughout the Southeastern United States during 2008. They were occasionally accompanied by their valet Dawn Renea. Although short-lived compared to the prior incarnations, they won the tag team titles in the New Frontier Wrestling Association[7] and challenged the tag champions in NWA All-Star Wrestling. In one of their last matches together, they wrestled Iron Cross and Stan Lee in a Texas Tornado death match at middle school fundraiser in Lebanon, Virginia. According to the pre-match stipulation, The Heavenly Bodies' valet Dawn Renae would have her head shaved if the team failed to win the belts.[8]

Dustin and Justin Corino

In 2015, "Desirable Dustin" and "Gigolo Justin" began teaming as The Heavenly Bodies in the Global Force Wrestling promotion.[9] They also wrestled for New Jersey-based promotion, PWS (Pro Wrestling Syndicate), during which time they received the blessing of Dr. Tom Prichard to use the name of The Heavenly Bodies. The PWS owners parted ways and Pat Buck, former co-owner of PWS, started WrestlePro. The Heavenly Bodies won the WrestlePro Tag Team titles on January 7, 2016.

Championship and Accomplishments

Notes

  1. ^ a b c Shields, Brian; Sullivan, Kevin (2009). WWE Encyclopedia. DK. p. 128. ISBN 978-0-7566-4190-0. 
  2. ^ PWI Staff (2007). "Pro Wrestling Illustrated presents: 2007 Wrestling almanac & book of facts". "Wrestling's historical cards". Kappa Publishing. p. 138. 
  3. ^ PWI Staff (2007). "Pro Wrestling Illustrated presents: 2007 Wrestling almanac & book of facts". "Wrestling's historical cards". Kappa Publishing. pp. 91–92. 
  4. ^ "WWE Official Survivor Series 1993 Results". Retrieved 2006-12-30. 
  5. ^ "RFVideo-AJ Styles Wrestling War, with Del Ray as manager". Archived from the original on 2007-01-31. Retrieved 2006-12-27. 
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2010-05-19. Retrieved 2010-04-07. 
  7. ^ "Independent Wrestling Results - May 2008". OnlineWorldofWrestling.com. May 2008. 
  8. ^ "Wrestling returning to Lebanon". Clinch Valley Times. St. Paul, Virginia. December 4, 2008. 
  9. ^ http://globalforcewrestling.com/roster/newheavenlybodies/
  10. ^ a b "Pro Wrestling Illustrated Top 100 Tag Teams of the PWI Years: 17 The Heavenly Bodies". Pro Wrestling Illustrated. Blue Bell, Pennsylvania, United States: Sports and Entertainment publications LLC. October 18, 2003. p. 20. November 2003. 
  11. ^ http://www.cagematch.net/?id=28&nr=45&page=4>

External links

  • The Heavenly Bodies at Online World of Wrestling
  • Vito DeNucci Biography
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