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War Machine (professional wrestling)

War Machine is a professional wrestling tag team consisting of Raymond Rowe and Hanson. They currently wrestle for WWE as Erik and Ivar known now as The Viking Raiders. They are known for their time in New Japan Pro-Wrestling (NJPW) and Ring of Honor (ROH), where they won the IWGP Tag Team Championship and the ROH World Tag Team Championship. Outside of Ring of Honor, they have also worked for multiple independent promotions in the United Kingdom and United States, including Insane Championship Wrestling (ICW), Revolution Pro Wrestling (RPW), Progress Wrestling (Progress) and Pro Wrestling Guerrilla (PWG). War Machine have also competed in Japan for Pro Wrestling Noah (Noah). They signed with WWE in 2018 as War Raiders and began performing on the NXT brand where they won the NXT Tag Team Championship once. In April 2019, they were drafted to WWE's Raw brand under the name The Viking Raiders, as Erik (Rowe) and Ivar (Hanson). They are the current Raw Tag Team Champions.[3]

War Machine
War Machine 2017.jpg
Rowe (left) and Hanson (right) in January 2017
Tag team
MembersHanson / Ivar
Raymond Rowe / Rowe / Erik
Name(s)The Viking Experience
The Viking Raiders
War Machine[1]
The War Raiders[2]
Billed heights6 ft 2 in (1.88 m) – Hanson
6 ft 1 in (1.85 m) – Rowe
billed weight
552 lb (250 kg)
DebutFebruary 22, 2014
Years active2014–present


Ring of Honor and New Japan Pro Wrestling (2014-2018)Edit

In 2014, Hanson and Rowe participated in the Top Prospect Tournament,[4] where they met in the finals. Hanson defeated Rowe to win the tournament[5] Since then, they performed as a tag team under the name War Machine. On April 11, Hanson and Rowe both signed contracts with ROH.[6] On August 22, 2015, War Machine defeated Killer Elite Squad (Davey Boy Smith Jr. and Lance Archer) in a non-title match and afterwards challenged them to a match for their GHC Tag Team Championship, a title owned by the Japanese Pro Wrestling Noah promotion.[7] War Machine received their title shot in Japan on September 19, but were defeated by the Killer Elite Squad.[8] On December 18 at Final Battle, War Machine defeated The Kingdom (Matt Taven and Michael Bennett) to win the ROH World Tag Team Championship.[9] They lost the title to The Addiction (Christopher Daniels and Frankie Kazarian) on May 9, 2016, at War of the Worlds.[10] In late 2016, War Machine took part in New Japan Pro Wrestling's 2016 World Tag League, where they finished with a record of four wins and three losses, failing to advance to the finals.[11] Hanson and Rowe debuted for the United Kingdom based Revolution Pro Wrestling in January 2017, unsuccessfully challenging Joel Redman and Charlie Sterling for the Undisputed British Tag Team Championship.[12]

On April 9, 2017, at New Japan's Sakura Genesis 2017, War Machine defeated Tencozy (Hiroyoshi Tenzan and Satoshi Kojima) to win the IWGP Tag Team Championship.[13] They lost the title to Guerrillas of Destiny (Tama Tonga and Tanga Loa) on June 11 at Dominion 6.11 in Osaka-jo Hall,[14] regaining it in a no disqualification match on July 1 at G1 Special in USA.[15] They lost the title to Killer Elite Squad in a three-way match, also involving Guerrillas of Destiny, on September 24 at Destruction in Kobe.[16] War Machine finished with ROH at Final Battle on December 15, 2017 and on December 16, 2017. They had their final matches with NJPW on January 4, 2018, at Wrestle Kingdom 12, and January 5, 2018 at New Year's Dash.[17]

WWE (2018–present)Edit

On January 16, 2018, Rowe and Hanson signed a contract with WWE and reported to the WWE Performance Center.[18]

During a TV taping before NXT TakeOver: New Orleans, Rowe and Hanson debuted as faces, now under the name "War Raiders", interfering in a match between Heavy Machinery (Tucker Knight and Otis Dozovic) and Tino Sabbatelli and Riddick Moss, causing it to end in a no contest. Over the following weeks, they started a winning streak, defeating NXT teams such as The Mighty and Heavy Machinery.[19] War Raiders would go on to main event NXT TakeOver: WarGames II in Los Angeles teaming with Ricochet and Pete Dunne against The Undisputed Era in the WarGames match. At NXT TakeOver: Phoenix, Rowe and Hanson defeated The Undisputed Era to win the NXT Tag Team Championship. They successfully defended their tag team championships at NXT Takeover New York against the team of Ricochet & Aleister Black.

On April 15, 2019, they debuted on Raw as "The Viking Experience", with Rowe and Hanson now called Erik and Ivar.[20] This new name was very negatively received on social media.[21] Pro Wrestling Insider reported that another name considered was "The Berzerkers".[22] They teamed with the heel team The Revival to defeat the team of Aleister Black, Ricochet, Curt Hawkins, and Zack Ryder. The next week, the team was renamed "The Viking Raiders" while their finisher was renamed to The Viking Experience.[23] They relinquished the NXT Tag Team Championships at the May 1 NXT television tapings (aired May 15). After relinquishing the championship, however, The Viking Raiders were challenged to one final NXT match for the titles by Street Profits. The match, however, ended in a disqualification after The Forgotten Sons attacked Ivar, followed by an ensuing brawl between the teams.[24] On the September 9 episode of Raw, in Madison Square Garden they turned face after they saved Cedric Alexander from The O.C.. [25]

On the October 14th episode of Raw, Erik and Ivar captured the Raw Tag Team Championship from Bobby Roode and Dolph Ziggler.[26] However, they suffered their first loss as a team in WWE at Crown Jewel in a tag team turmoil match for the WWE Tag Team World Cup, ultimately losing the last match against The O.C. At Survivor Series, they defeated The New Day and The Undisputed Era in a Champions Triple Threat Tag Team match, scoring Raw's only victory at the event, which was ultimately won by NXT.

Championships and accomplishmentsEdit

War Machine as the IWGP Tag Team Champions


  1. ^ "News - ROH Wrestling".
  2. ^
  3. ^ Khan, Steve. "WWE Raw results: The Superstar Shake-up begins". Retrieved 16 April 2019. War Raiders are now The Viking Experience. They've also been given new individual names: Erik (Rowe) and... Ivar (Hanson).
  4. ^ Ring Of Honor (2013-12-16). "2014 Top Prospect Tournament: Participant #8". Ring Of Honor.
  5. ^ CageMatch (2014-01-25). "ROH Wrestling's Finest". CageMatch.
  6. ^ "Hanson & Rowe sign with ROH". Ring of Honor. Retrieved 2014-04-11.
  7. ^ "Ring of Honor tag team heading to Pro Wrestling Noah". Wrestleview. Retrieved 2015-08-26.
  8. ^ "Great Voyage 2015 in Osaka". Pro Wrestling Noah (in Japanese). Retrieved September 19, 2015.
  9. ^ Meltzer, Dave (December 18, 2015). "ROH Final Battle 2015 live results: Jay Lethal vs. AJ Styles, Roderick Strong vs. Bobby Fish". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved December 19, 2015.
  10. ^ Johnson, Mike (May 9, 2016). "Bullet Club reigns supreme: ROH War of the Worlds tour coverage from Dearborn, Michigan". Pro Wrestling Insider. Retrieved May 9, 2016.
  11. ^ 戦国炎舞 -Kizna- Presents World Tag League 2016. New Japan Pro Wrestling (in Japanese). Retrieved December 7, 2016.
  12. ^
  13. ^ a b Rose, Bryan (April 8, 2017). "NJPW Sakura Genesis live results: Okada vs. Shibata". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved April 9, 2017.
  14. ^ Rose, Bryan (June 10, 2017). "NJPW Dominion live results: Kazuchika Okada vs. Kenny Omega". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved June 11, 2017.
  15. ^ a b Witner, Arya (July 1, 2017). "NJPW G1 Special live results: Kazuchika Okada vs. Cody". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved July 1, 2017.
  16. ^ Rose, Bryan (September 23, 2017). "NJPW Destruction in Kobe live results: Kenny Omega vs. Juice Robinson". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved September 24, 2017.
  17. ^ Elizabeth, Rev Claire (5 January 2018). "NJPW New Year Dash!! results: Surprise!". Cageside Seats.
  18. ^ Clapp, John. "WWE Performance Center signs War Machine". WWE. Retrieved January 16, 2018.
  19. ^ "War Machine Debut New Name at NXT TakeOver Pre-Show Taping". Pro Wrestling Sheet | Insider Wrestling News and Reports. 2018-04-07. Retrieved 2018-04-08.
  20. ^ "WWE: 2019 Superstar Shake-up Summary". Retrieved 2019-04-17.
  21. ^ Powell, Jason. "Powell's WWE Raw Hit List: Superstar Shakeup night one". Retrieved 23 April 2019.
  22. ^
  23. ^ "The Viking Experience is no more". Retrieved 2019-04-22.
  24. ^
  25. ^
  26. ^
  27. ^ a b "Pro Wrestling Illustrated (PWI) 500 for 2016". The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved September 1, 2016.
  28. ^ "ROH Final Battle 2015 « Events Database « CAGEMATCH - The Internet Wrestling Database".
  29. ^ "VIP Limitless « Events Database « CAGEMATCH - The Internet Wrestling Database".
  30. ^ "WCPW Tag Team Championship". What Culture Pro Wrestling. Retrieved October 3, 2017.

External linksEdit