When people talk about the greatest tag teams of all time, names like the Road Warriors, the Midnight Express and Rock N Roll Express are quickly mentioned. Another team that should be mentioned as one of the greatest of all time consisted of Davey Boy Smith and ‘The Dynamite Kid’ Tom Billington….The British Bulldogs.
The duo wrestled all over the world including…Canada, the U.S., Europe and Japan. Granted, they didn’t hold many tag titles as a team…only 1 WWF tag title reign and a couple of reigns as a team in Calgary Stampede. Despite the lack of championships, they consistently stole the show with their unique blend of power and finesse. Davey Boy was usually the powerhouse and Billington was the high flyer.
Their biggest moment happened at Wrestlemania 2 when they defeated the Dream Team for the WWF tag team titles with Captain Lou Albano and rocker Ozzy Osbourne at ringside. They seemed like they were on the precipice of super stardom. A career threatening back injury for The Dynamite Kid and bad behavior led to The British Bulldogs dropping the titles and leaving the WWF.
They remained a team when they returned to the Calgary Stampede territory. This where many casual fans may have lost touch with the whereabouts of the Bulldogs. While in Calgary, they began teasing dissension between Dynamite and Davey Boy. It all culminated when ‘Bulldog’ Bob Brown hit Dynamite Kid from behind with a kendo stick. Dynamite Kid was convinced that it was Davey Boy Smith who struck him. The duo brawled in the locker room and with help from Davey Boy’s “brother” Johnny Smith…Dynamite and Johnny brutalized Davey Boy Smith until Chris Benoit and the rest of the babyface wrestlers made the save.
Johnny Smith would replace Davey Boy in the team with the Dynamite Kid. They would later be known as ‘The British Bruisers.’ They would wrestle in Calgary as well as Japan to some success. They team wouldn’t last as a series of injuries and drug abuse sidelined Dynamite Kid into retirement.
While that was the kayfabe breakup of the British Bulldogs…the real break up occurred when Davey Boy left Dynamite high and dry in Japan to return to the WWF. Tom Billington and Smith had legitimate hatred for one another for years because of that incident. A sad ending to a great tag team that could have been so much greater.
Here is the video of that break up in Calgary…Jim Davies was the man on the microphone…