A look at Professional Wrestling Finishing Moves.
BUT IT KICKS OUT AT TWO!!
This seems to becoming a familiar in scene in wrestling today. Long gone are the days when you had a wrestler who had a devastating manoeuvre which nobody could ever kick out from. These days we see wrestlers kick out of most finishing moves on a regular basis.
Remember about 10 years ago? You used to watch Wrestlemania and it was the one time when The Rock could kick out of the Stunner from Austin and where Kane could kick out of a Tombstone Piledriver. Because Wrestlemania was special and this was the place that everyone would put in the extra effort to be victorious on the biggest stage of them all.
These days I can’t count how many times I watch a wrestler kick out of a normal finisher. Take John Morrison for example, more people must have kicked out after receiving ‘Star Ship Pain’ than have fallen from Santino’s ‘Cobra’ It wouldn’t bother me so much but this is happening on a weekly basis on RAW and Smackdown.
In the old days we would see a wrestler gain a build up for months where they would use one move that seemed to be unstoppable. Nobody could kick out from it. Then over time eventually someone would do it on the big stage and it would shock you. It just shows more evidence that everything has to be done quicker and faster in today’s entertainment. Nobody wants to watch a long programme which involves someone winning for nearly a year, facing jobbers who they are obviously going to crush with one finishing move but it does seem a shame that finishing moves seem to gain less publicity.
You could name half the roster of today and I would have to think what their finishing move is and called, none of them seem to jump out at me. Take this list of wrestlers.
JTG, Ezekiel Jackson, Vladimir Koslov, Kelly Kelly, David Hart Smith, David Otunga, Eve, Gail Kim, Husky Harris, The Uso’s, Maryse, Mason Ryan, Michael McGilicutty, Michael Tarver, The Bella Twins, Primo, Skip Sheffield, Tyson Kidd, Yoshi Tatsu, Zack Ryder, Brodus Clay, Heath Slater, Rosa Mendes and Tyler Reks.
Yes you would most probably argue that most on this list are jobbers but can you immediately think of their finishing move? If you can, are you able to name them? Compare them to this list.
Randy Orton, John Cena, Triple H, Undertaker, Shawn Michaels, The Rock, Stone Cold Steve Austin, Rey Mysterio, Christian, Kofi Kingston and Evan Bourne.
You will instantly recall what all their finishers are and what they are named, now granted these people are in more limelight but should that deter from the fact that some of the others have nothing at all? I don’t even know what I’m watching for with some from the first list.
Alberto Del Rio is the latest wrestler I can say that has been truly given a push with a deadly finishing move with his cross arm breaker. He has not given it a specific name but you know that’s what his main move is and chances are when he locks it in you are going to believe that the match will end there and then.
It seems a shame that this aspect has been lost a little because having a finishing move named specifically for you or having a move you call your own provides a great amount of depth to your wrestling character. John Morrison has a high flying move as a finisher because he is a high flyer. Del Rio’s finisher is something that is deadly and completes his ruthless character. Too many wrestlers seem to go by the waste side without any identity at all. A move and a cool name is maybe all it takes to give that wrestler a platform to making themselves known.
Take Zack Ryder for example. On WWE TV nobody will acknowledge him or give him a shot, he is plain and simply a jobber. On the internet however he is truly gaining praise and interest from people because of his funny episodes on the internet of himself interviewing Justin Bieber and all-round acting like a fool. Zack has found a way of creating an identity and if he continues to be a success on the internet then it won’t be long before WWE gets behind him and puts him on TV more.
Then there is the other side of the coin. TNA.
TNA relies on being a shoot wrestling match style company. The matches are frantic and if you’re looking at the X Division they are always trying to raise the bar for what can be done in the ring. However sometimes they just try too hard. I recall watching a tag team match between Generation Me and The Motor City Machineguns and some of the stuff they were doing in the ring was incredible. Only for the match to finish on a very basic finisher when they had previously been doing moves for the past 20 minutes which looked more effective and damaging to the human anatomy. TNA needs to look at providing those matches on a special basis, create something that is unique and display it every once and a while to ‘wow’ fans, don’t put it on show every week because you run out of ideas and fast.
We the wrestling fans have been spoilt with some of the action between the ropes as the industry has developed over the past 20 years. TNA needs to look at solid matches and solid finishes. Then when they come to Bound for Glory (If they even make it to October this year with the way they are going) they can put on an X Division match where everyone kicks out of efforts which you would not normally expect, that will create more excitement during the matches and leave the PPV in high regard as time passes by.
Do you agree that finishers are not highlighted enough in today’s wrestling world? Or do you think I’m talking a load of old rubbish and reminiscing on the past too much? Email me your thoughts at email@example.com or get in touch through Twitter at @BeansOnToastUK.
Also if you’re interested in hearing any of my other thoughts then please check out the Victor M. Ruiz podcast. This podcast was recorded the week after the Elimination Chamber PPV but I discuss a lot about wrestling in general and look ahead at Wrestlemania so it’s still got interesting points. There will also be a new podcast recorded next week which I will get a link up on the site for you to follow as we discuss the card of Wrestlemania, predictions and any changes we would have made.
Thanks for reading!
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