Raymond Rowe is a 37-year-old professional wrestler from Cleveland Ohio. He is currently signed to the WWE’s RAW brand under the ring name Erik and is one half of the tag team, The Viking Raiders.
Rowe began his professional wrestling career in 2003 and wrestled on the independent circuit for 10 years. In 2013, he began wrestling for Ring of Honor (ROH) and made his debut in losing match against Bobby Fish. He formed the tag team War Machine with Hanson (Todd Smith) in 2014 and in December 2015 they won the ROH World Tag Team Championship. They lost the title in April 2016 and left Ring of Honor the following year.
In September 2015, Rowe and Hanson made their Japanese debuts as a tag team for Pro Wrestling Noah and New Japan Pro Wrestling. In April 2017, they won the IWGP Tag Team Championship titles at Sakura Genesis.
Erik’s WWE Debut
In 2018, both Rowe and Hanson signed with the WWE and reported for training to the company’s Performance Center in Florida. They made their televised debut on an episode of NXT in April as the tag team, The War Raiders, and attacked Heavy Machinery (Otis Dozovic and Tucker Knight) and the team of Riddick Moss and Tino Sabbatelli.
In January 2019, The War Raiders won the NXT Tag Team Championship after facing The Undisputed Era at NXT TakeOver: Phoneix. During the WWE’s Superstar Shake-up, Rowe and Hanson joined RAW and became known as Erik (Rowe) and Ivar (Smith). Their tag team was also re-packaged as “The Viking Raiders.”
In October 2019, the Viking Raiders became the WWE RAW Tag Team champions after defeating Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode. Their reign lasted 98 days before being defeated by Seth Rollins and Buddy Murphy in January 2020.
During the summer of 2020, The Viking Raiders feuded with the The Street Profits. This led to both teams earning a match against each other at Backlash. At the event, the match never started because both teams would begin fighting in the parking lot and eventually team up as “the Viking Profits” to take out Akira Towzawa and his Ninjas.
On the September 7th episode of Monday Night RAW, the Viking Raiders teamed with Apollo Crews and Ricochet in an eight-man tag team match against The Hurt Business which they lost. The match ended abruptly due to Ivar suffering a legitimate cervical injury during the match. On October 7, Erik also announced that he would be out of action after having surgery on his bicep.
Erik & Ivar Return to the Ring
Erik and Ivar returned to Monday Night RAW on April 13, 2021 and defeated Cedric Alexander and Shelton Benjamin. A few months later, they won a battle royal meant to determine the number one contenders for the RAW tag team titles. With their victory, The Viking Raiders faced A.J. Styles and Omos at Money In The Bank but lost.
On the July 19 episode of Monday Night RAW, The Viking Raiders, alongside Riddle, defeated the team of John Morrison, A.J. Styles and Omos. Later that night, it was announced that The Viking Raiders would face A.J. Styles and Omos for the RAW Tag Titles in a rematch the following week. On the July 27 episode of RAW, The Viking Raiders failed to win the Raw Tag Titles over A.J. Styles and Omos again.
Career Championships and Accomplishments
- Anarchy Championship Wrestling
- Anarchy Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- World Hardcore Championship (1 time)
- Absolute Intense Wrestling
- AIW Absolute Championship (1 time)
- J.T. Lightning Tournament (2015)
- Brew City Wrestling
- BCW Tag Team Championship (1 time)
- Cleveland All-Pro Wrestling
- CAPW Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- CAPW Tag Team Championship (1 time)
- Firestorm Pro Wrestling
- Firestorm Pro Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- International Wrestling Cartel
- IWC World Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- IWC Tag Team Championship
- New Japan Pro Wrestling
- IWGP Tag Team Championship (2 times)
- NWA Branded Outlaw Wrestling
- NWA BOW Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- NWA BOW Outlaw Championship (1 time)
- NWA Lone Star
- NWA Lone Star Junior Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- NWA Lone Star Tag Team Championship (1 time)
- NWA Wrestling Revolution
- NWA Grand Warrior Championship (2 times)
- Ring of Honor
- ROH World Tag Team Championship (1 time)
- VIP Wrestling
- VIP Heavyweight Championship (2 times)
- VIP Tag Team Championship (1 time)
- What Culture Pro Wrestling
- WCPW Tag Team Championship (1 time)
- World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE)
- NXT Tag Team Championship (1 time)
- WWE Raw Tag Team Championship (1 time)
- WWE 24/7 Championship (1 time)