The Prime Time Players was a professional wrestling tag team in World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) consisting of "The Real Deal" Titus O'Neil and "Mr. No Days Off" Darren Young. As the team name suggests, their gimmick portrays them as brash and cocky athletes.
Darren was initially a member of The Nexus as a competitor from WWE NXT (Season 1). He was managed by CM Punk who was a heel at the time. He had refused to join the Straight Edge Society, and seems to have turned against Punk since Punk was also attacked when Nexus attacked Cena under the guidance of the victor of season 1, Wade Barrett. Darren was not present when Punk formed the New Nexus, having been kicked out of the group by Wade for losing matches.
Titus was a competitor on WWE NXT (Season 1), a face managed by Zack Ryder. He was the first to be eliminated, and did join the rest of the season 2 rookies in following their predecessors' example by attacking their pros when Kaval won the finale.
The two got a second chance at TV when they were brought onto NXT Redemption under new pros. Darren was managed by Chavo Guerrero and Titus by Hornswoggle. Titus O'Neil was for a long time, a face, pairing with Percy Watson (see Percy & Titus). Darren Young was a consistently a heel for much of the show.
March 22: Titus defeated Darren.
April 5 Titus and Hornswoggle teamed to beat Darren and Chavo.
April 12 Titus defeated Darren.
April 19 Titus helped Hornswoggle beat Darren.
April 26 Titus defeated Darren.
May 24: Titus defeated Darren.
On July 19, Titus defeated Darren.
The pair initially feuded, exchanging victories back and forth. Eventually, Titus O'Neil made a heel turn by insulting the crowd, and after defeating Percy Watson, won Darren Young's respect, and Titus also began respecting Darren in turn.
On the April 18 episode of NXT, Young and O'Neil were signed by John Laurinaitis to the SmackDown brand. The team made their debut for the brand on the April 20 episode of SmackDown with a victory over The Usos.
Backstage they gloated over the demoted Teddy Long, insulting him for not having the vision to draft them earlier. Booker T concurred with Laurinaitis (an oddity, as he had fought for Team Teddy against Team Johnny at WrestleMania) that the pair were interesting and should have been on the show some time ago.
At No Way Out, Darren and Titus won a match to become the #1 contenders to the Tag Team Championship, after receiving assistance from Abraham Washington who betrayed Primo and Epico. On the July 16 episode of Raw, the Prime Time Players unsuccessfully challenged Kofi Kingston and R-Truth for the WWE Tag Team Championship.
O'Neil and Young bounced back with two singles victories over Kingston and R-Truth. On the August 10 episode of SmackDown, they defeated Primo and Epico in a number one contenders match via disqualification when A. W. provoked Kofi and R-Truth (who were doing guest commentary) into interfering in the match. That same day, A. W. was released from his contract. On the August 13 edition of Raw, it was announced that the Prime Time Players would receive their championship match at SummerSlam. That same night, after R-Truth defeated Heath Slater, O'Neil and Young ambushed R-Truth and left him laying in the ring (Kingston was away on an international tour). At SummerSlam, O'Neil & Young were defeated by Kingston and R-Truth. On the September 7 edition of SmackDown, O'Neil and Young defeated Primo and Epico and The Usos in a triple threat tag match to once again become the number one contenders to the Tag Team Championship. The following week of Raw, they were defeated by Team Hell No (Daniel Bryan and Kane), who became the new number one contenders. At Survivor Series, the Prime Time Players took part in a losing effort in a ten-man elimination tag team match.
In an interview released on August 15, 2013, Young revealed his homosexual orientation in real-life. On the August 19 episode of Raw, the Prime Time Players started to wrestle as faces. At the pre-show of Night of Champions, the Prime Time Players won a "Tag Team Turmoil" match and thus a title shot by last eliminating the Real Americans (Antonio Cesaro and Jack Swagger). Later that night, they lost to defending champions Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns of the Shield.
Reunion and various feuds (2015–2016)
On February 16 episode of Raw, O'Neil made a save for Young who was being attacked by The Ascension, signifying a reunion. The following week on Raw, the Prime Time Players would defeat The Ascension in a tag team match, which resulted in Young being beaten in the ring, furthering their feud. The Prime Time Players would bounce back from this hiccup, and go on to win a series of tag team matches, which put them in the #1 contender spot. At Money in the Bank 2015, the Prime Time Players successfully defeated The New Day to earn the WWE Tag Team Championship.
- Double-team finishing moves
- Ghetto Blaster (Backbreaker hold (O'Neil) / Diving elbow drop (Young) combination)
- Double-team signature moves
- O'Neil front suplexes Young onto an opponent
- O'Neil's finishing moves
- Clash of the Titus(Lifting sitout spinebuster)
- Young's finishing moves
- Gut Check(Fireman's carry double knee gutbuster) – 2011–present