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The Fabulous Freebirds were a groundbreaking professional wrestling tag team that attained fame in the 1980s, performing into the 1990s. The team usually consisted of three wrestlers, although in different situations and points in its history, just two performed under the Freebirds name.


The Fabulous Freebirds started performing together in 1979 when Michael "P.S." Hayes, Terry "Bam Bam" Gordy and Buddy "Jack" Roberts decided to try a ' 3-man gang' type tag-team - an unusual concept at the time. They worked as heel.

They wrestled in the Dallas-based World Class Championship Wrestling territory, where they had a legendary feud with the Von Erichs (David, Kevin, Kerry and Mike).. This feud featured an infamous incident where Michael Hayes dressed as Santa Claus gave Kerry Von Erich a beatdown.

They also performed in the NWA-affiliated Georgia Championship Wrestling and World Championship Wrestling, the American Wrestling Association and the Oklahoma-based Universal Wrestling Federation. While in the AWA they feuded primarily with the Road Warriors, costing them the World Tag Team Titles in a match against Jimmy Garvin and Steve Regal.

They had a very brief run in the World Wrestling Federation in 1984, where they were a part of the Rock 'n' Wrestling Connection period. In the WWF, they wrestled under the guidance of Cyndi Lauper's manager David Wolff, but they soon left the promotion when WWF officials wanted to split the team up.

The Freebirds were last together when Hayes, Gordy and Jimmy Garvin worked for the Global Wrestling Federation in 1994, ending the group after 15 years.

Their name was inspired by the Lynyrd Skynyrd song "Free Bird", which would be their theme song until "Badstreet USA" (sung, composed, and co-written by Hayes) replaced it in 1984. It is often claimed that the Freebirds were the first to use entrance music for their ring introductions, though this is not completely true. The Freebirds were the first to use Rock 'n' Roll entrance music. The first to use actual entrance music was Gorgeous George.

In 1999, Hayes became the manager for the Hardy Boyz and although it was never said on camera, this was WWE's attempt to create a new version of the Freebirds, but this alliance was short lived as the Hardys turned on Hayes and aligned with Gangrel to create the new Brood.

Freebird Rule

During the Freebirds' career in the NWA, they won its tag-team championship. While holding the title, promoters added a sub-gimmick to the team: the (unofficial) "Freebird Rule", which allowed any two of the three members of the team to defend the title on any given night.

This rule has been re-used by a number of other companies when a three (or more) man team captures a tag-team championship. Examples include: In rare cases, a similar rule has been applied to singles titles, such as when Three Count won the WCW Hardcore Championship in 2000, or Chris Jericho and Chyna co-held the WWE Intercontinental Championship between December 1999 and January 2000.



The Blackbirds were formed in 1988 in World Class Championship Wrestling by Iceman Parsons. He had just teamed with Terry Gordy and Buddy Roberts as the "Blackbird" in their feud with Michael Hayes. He teamed up with Perry "Action" Jackson and Harold T. Harris to form the Blackbirds. They also wrestled as The Blackbirds in the Global Wrestling Federation in 1992.

Extreme Freebirds

The Extreme Freebirds were formed in NWA Wildside and the NAWA by the son of Terry Gordy, Ray Gordy. He teamed up with Tank and Iceberg in 2004 to form this group.

Other appearances

The original three Freebirds briefly appear in action against Greg Gagne, The Tonga Kid, and Jim Brunzell during the opening sequence of the 1986 film Highlander, which occurs at an arena-based wrestling show in "Madison Square Gardenmarker" (the actual site was the Izod Centermarker in New Jersey, as they didn't take the Meadowlands banners down for filming but was said to be Madison Square Garden), as wrestlers in-action.

Members and incarnations

  • Main Members
    • Michael Hayes was the leader of the group. Nicknamed "P.S." (Purely Sexy), he has been known to get the crowd going with his antics.
    • Terry Gordy was the powerhouse of the group. Nicknamed "Bam Bam," he loves to fight and beat his opponents down.
    • Buddy Roberts, nicknamed "Jack" for his love of Jack Daniels'marker whiskey, was the speed of the group, who would often frustrate other wrestlers into chasing him, until Hayes and/or Gordy surprise them with a move. Buddy has also been acknowledged as the best ring technician of the group.
    • Jimmy Garvin's association with the Freebirds began in 1983, as he had often teamed with Hayes, Gordy, and Roberts in WCCW and AWA. In 1988, he teamed with Steven Dane while Hayes was injured as a watered-down version of the Freebirds, and with Hayes during a reignited WCW run between June 1989 and July 1992. He was always considered the fourth Freebird by Hayes, Gordy and Roberts, although no one really believed it until 1989, when Hayes and Garvin teamed up for the NWA World Tag Team Championship tournament.

  • Associated members
    • During the Buddy Roberts and Terry Gordy feud against Michael Hayes:
      • Iceman Parsons – in late 1987, he joined Terry Gordy and Buddy Roberts after Michael Hayes left the Fabulous Freebirds to help them get revenge on him. Parsons was known as the "Blackbird" during this feud.
      • The Angel of Death teamed with Terry Gordy, Buddy Roberts and Iceman "King" Parsons in the late-1987-1988 version of the Freebirds. He had previously feuded with Gordy, Roberts and Michael Hayes in the UWF prior to joining the group.
    • During the Michael Hayes and Jimmy Garvin tag team era:
      • Steven Dane teamed with Hayes as The Freebirds in WCCW, CWA, and AWA. When Hayes was injured, he would team with Garvin.
      • Badstreet – Brad Armstrong under a mask in WCW, and the group's light-heavyweight/cruiserweight. Originally appeared as "Fantasia", but WCW changed the name to Badstreet to avoid a legal confrontation with Disney.
      • Big Daddy Dink – the Freebird alias of manager Sir Oliver Humperdink; in keeping with the Freebirds' "frustrated rock & roll band" gimmick, he was referred to as their "tour manager"/"road boss" in WCW (1991).
      • Little Richard Marley – WCW jobber Rocky King, who as "Little Richard Marley" served as a ringside pest to Freebird opponents in late-1990.
    • Lately:

Championships and accomplishments

Championship]] (1 time)1 – Hayes

1Hayes' reign as NWA United States Heavyweight Champion occurred after Ted Turner purchased Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling from Jim Crockett, Jr. in 1988, which resulted in renaming the promotion World Championship Wrestling. This was also prior to the title's name being changed to the WCW United States Heavyweight Championship and prior to WCW's withdrawal from the NWA.

2During Hayes and Garvin's first reign, the titles were known as the NWA World Tag Team Championships.

See also


Further reading

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