When there is a title change after a fairly brief range, the words "hot potato" often make their way into the digital conversation, sometimes followed by bemoaning how a short title reign cheapens the belts.
We saw this after Judgment Day reclaimed the WWE men's tag belts from Jey Uso and Cody Rhodes, although one could also see a lot of storyline at play (i.e. having to prove themselves to Rhea Ripley, and none of us want to disappoint Mami) and as part of the larger narrative leading up to War Games. YMMV.
Talk of overly warm tubers arose again this week after The D'Angelo Family recaptured the NXT tag belts from Chase U. Yeah, it's never great when a team loses its first title defense but, again, we had some nice storyline elements.
Andre Chase has (since back when the crowd wanted him to turn organically face, anyway) been against taking shortcuts to victories and gold. And he turned down Jacy Jayne's invitation to cheat, even if the subsequent action led to Tony D'Angelo getting distracted and rolled up for the pin. Chase followed up by more or less costing Jayne and Thea Hail the tag belts by preventing the newest Chase U member from cheating.
Which was all well and good until all this talk of scandal at Chase U. They've played it pretty well since, especially with Andre getting disheartened when his very own student section walked out on him, leading the deflated professor to take the fall so The Family can regain the belts.
Chase U getting gold, however briefly, is a nice reward for the tremendously entertaining work of Andre and poker-player-turned-excellent-hot-tag Duke Hudson. And if the theme here is that cheating was involved in winning the championship, then it makes even more sense.
Plus The Family put on really good matches, and WWE's tag division is stacked. In terms of quick title changes, it doesn't seem like it hurt anybody, especially if Tony and Stacks get plenty more opportunities to shine.
The following Tag Team Power Rankings take into account wins, power and placement of segments, recentness of appearances, creative direction and momentum for teams and factions.
WWE Tag Team Power Rankings through Nov. 17:
1. Judgment Day (last week: 1)
Pro: Rhea Ripley remains women's champ on Raw. Senor Money in the Bank Damian Priest and Finn Balor held off a challenge from Cody Rhodes and Jey Uso thanks to ... Drew McIntyre? Intrigue! And JD McDonagh is now an official member. Dominik Mysterio is still NXT North American champ. And their War Games match may well headline Survivor Series.
Con: What is the deal with McIntyre, and how will it impact group dynamics, especially with Damian's guaranteed title shot?
2. Damage CTRL (2)
Pro: Iyo Sky is still champ and has more backup then ever. They'll also get a big spotlight in a War Games match.
Con: Bayley has no clue she's on the outs. Plus adding Becky to the babyface team makes them the favorites.
3. The D'Angelo Family (not ranked)
Pro: Successfully reclaimed the NXT tag belts.
Con: Made possibly in large part by Andre Chase unraveling.
4. Bobby Lashley and Street Profits (6)
Pro: The Profits won a #1 contenders match for the men's tag belts.
Con: As good as they are, they seem like longshots to take gold from Judgment Day.
5. Imperium (not ranked)
Pro: Gunther is still the dominant Intercontinental Champion, and Ludwig Kaiser defeated Tommaso Ciampa thanks to Giovanni Vinci.
Con: Looks like Gunther giving credit to Vinci is not sitting well with Kaiser.
6. Chelsea Green and Piper Niven (4)
Pro: Still women's tag champs.
Con: Piper took a loss to Tegan Nox that presumably could lead to a challenge for the belts.
7. Meta-Four (10)
Pro: Lash Legend won her way into the Iron Survivor Challenge. Noam Dar still clings (somewhat fearfully) to the Heritage Cup. And they're all just wildly entertaining.
Con: They'll expect big things from Lash in that big-time match.
8. Diamond Mine (3)
Pro: Still undefeated on the main roster, and seemingly have big plans.
Con: All they got this week is a backstage package.
9. Alpha Academy (9)
Pro: Otis remains a treasure, both wrestling a great match against Shinsuke Nakamura and entertaining on NXT. Plus Chad Gable now has a shot at the Heritage Cup.
Con: It took three Kinshasas to do it, but Otis still fell to the King of Strong Style.
10. Brawling Brutes (not ranked)
Pro: Got back into the win column with a spirited victory of OTM on NXT.
Con: Unable to win the SmackDown #1 contenders' match, and are Ridge Holland and Butch on the outs?
Tag Team Segment of the Week: Title change with a lot of storyline implications? Check for The Family relieving Chase U of the championships.
A title change, a title defense and new #1 contenders is a pretty good week for the tag scene.