On finishing moves


Over on what used to be the bird app, I ran across someone complaining about finishing moves in pro wrestling. A wrestler strung together a sequence of finishing moves used by other wrestlers and only got a near fall for it. The angry fan became angry, evidently because finishing moves should be globally effective, I guess.

I've heard this complaint occasionally here, and it just doesn't make sense to me. Joe Frazier's jab wasn't Larry Holmes's jab. Khabib's round kick wasn't Cro Cop's. Mayu Iwatani and Chad Gable have better suplexes than nearly anyone (yes, I'm awarding style points). Phil Niekro's knuckleball was maybe the best ever but there's a reason he's not known for his fastball.

It makes all the sense in the world, then, that a finishing move for one wrestler isn't a finishing move for another. I think they also have historical context. Misawa even started reserving the Tiger Driver for matches where the storyline (usually vs. Kawada) was "have to pull out everything I know to beat him."

Having said all this, are there finishing moves that should be globally effective? Only a few come to mind for me. Perhaps the One Winged Angel, but even then it's only a finisher in certain contexts. Vikingo's step up 450, maybe. He's said that his father did a step up Senton. I don't know anyone else that even does that move. I think Tiger Driver variants are probably global finishers, but it's a move I honestly wish would go away. That's just me.

What are your thoughts?

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