WWE tag teams lately tend to be a pairing of individual wrestlers thrown together. Rarely is the whole greater than the sum of its parts, and disconnect shows in the ring.
Current tag team champions The Usos are one of the few exceptions. Jey and Jimmy embody the team aspect of tag team, coordinating and cooperating almost as if it were second nature. And maybe it is; they’re identical twins. Of course, wrestling prowess on this level doesn’t come without a fair share of hard work.
Jey Uso is one half of this pro wrestling tag team powerhouse. Here are 13 things you didn’t know about the younger of the two Usos.
1. Jey Uso was born Joshua Samuel Fatu, identical twin brother of Jonathan Solofa Fatu (Jimmy), into possibly the most legendary of wrestling families. Rikishi, former intercontinental and tag team champion, is his father. The Tonga Kid and the late Umaga are his uncles. And The Rock and Roman Reigns are his cousins.
2. As the son of a professional wrestler, Fatu was exposed to the lifestyle early on. His father was away from home for days on end, and tired when he returned. Early in his own career, he expressed to his dad his sheer amazement at how someone can balance family life and the rigors of the squared circle.
3. Fatu and his brother hung out backstage with the children of other pro wrestlers at their dad’s local matches . “I remember the Rotundo boys,” Uso said in an interview, “mostly Bray [Wyatt] and the Hennigs.”
4. Fatu grew up in Pensacola, Florida and played football in high school. He attended the University of West Alabama, where he continued to play from 2001 to 2003.
5. Jey Uso is a tag team specialist who currently teams up with his twin brother Jimmy. The pair competes as The Usos, but has also gone by The Fatu Brothers and The Fatu Twins.
6. The Usos started wrestling as a tag team in early 2010 as part of Florida Championship Wrestling, a WWE developmental territory. They held the tag team title for about three months in the spring of that year before losing it to Los Aviadores.
7. In late May of 2010 on Raw, The Usos ambushed the Hart Dynasty, who had just defended their tag team title. This initiated a feud that would play out over the next several months and marked their main-roster debut for WWE.
8. The Usos perform the Siva Tau, a traditional Samoan war dance, in the lead-up to every match. The accompanying chant includes lyrics which translate to, “Here I come completely prepared, my strength is at its peak, make way and move aside, because this Manu is unique.” Samoa’s national rugby and Australian rules football teams also perform the Siva Tau in preparation for international matches.
9. The Usos technically made their WrestleMania debut at WrestleMania 27 in a dark match. But their triple threat match at WrestleMania 28, competing against Primo and Epico and against Justin Gabriel and Tyson Kidd, marks their WrestleMania broadcast debut. The Usos failed in that title shot.
10. The Usos have held the tag team title twice. They won it for the first time in early March of 2014, defeating the Outlaws. Their first reign lasted for much of the year, eventually ending at the hands of Goldust and Stardust in September. The Usos regained the title two months later, this time from The Miz and Damien Mizdow.
11. Being identical twins, dressed in identical outfits, Jey Uso and his brother Jimmy are difficult to distinguish in the ring. But there’s a shortcut. Jey wears face paint on the left side of his face, while his brother wears his on the right side. The difference is purely for logistical reasons, as Jimmy is positioned on the right for the entrance dance, closest to the cameras.
12. The most painful move in wrestling, according to Jey Uso, is Mark Henry’s world’s strongest slam. Henry is a former power lifter, Olympian and strongman who tips the scale at 400 pounds. He holds his opponent horizontal to his chest then slams him to the mat and falls on top of him in one motion.
13. Jey Uso is married and has two sons under the age of 10.
Norm Elrod likes sports and other sanctioned forms of craziness.