Episode 264: Five Incredibly Silly Finishing Moves in Wrestling


I like professional wrestling. I know the results are predetermined and everything is supposedly scripted and all that. I still love professional wrestling because I like the characters, stories and, most especially, the action. But, yes, I know you have to ignore that part of your brain that’s screaming “It’s all phony” at the top of its metaphorical lungs to truly get the most enjoyment out of it. I mean, just look at the clip above and try and explain to me how it was actually possible to hypnotize an entire locker room without anyone from the audience, both the live crowd and the people watching at home, or the announce team not be affected. You can’t!

Yes, the clip above is incredibly stupid and silly. And those moments above will always live in infamy about how dumb wrestling can get. In a good way, mind you. But in between those momentous moments, there are still some really goofy moments that happen each and every day in wrestling. In fact, a lot of the times, it’s the way the wrestlers’ finishers, the move that’s supposed to be the death blow to their opponents! Think about it: it’s supposed to be an incredibly devastating move that’s designed to incapacitate someone but it still looks stupid!

So, let’s go look at some of the more ridiculous finishing moves in the world of professional wrestling!

1. Santino Marella’s “Cobra”

It’s hard to believe that Santino Marella started his career as a “serious” professional wrestler. It just wasn’t in the cards for him as he gradually became a doofus wrestler and, honestly, it was the best thing that ever happened to him thanks to his natural comedic talent. Even so, he managed to eke out a lot of wins and even win a few titles throughout his tenure in the WWE, mostly because of his “devastating” finishing attack, The Cobra… which is pretty silly, especially if you consider its origins.

The Cobra is, in essence, a nerve strike to the opponent’s neck area, incapacitating them long enough for Santino to get the pin. That’s the kayfabe answer but, in wrestling, things are never that simple. For one thing, once he gets his arm in the appropriate position, Santino’s Cobra becomes a sentient being. It can be controlled through various methods such as by snake charmers or the charms of the opposite sex at times. This also means that, even if Santino is knocked out, the Cobra can still be conscious and ready to attack!

The weirdest thing about the Cobra is actually its origins. You would think Santino Marella learned the move from some martial artist as he does have an MMA background or he developed it by analyzing the human anatomy and studying where to attack to knock out a foe quickly. No, he didn’t do any of those things. Santino learned the Cobra strike from comedian Jon Lovitz when the latter was the guest host of RAW one night. To quote Kurt Angle, it’s true! It’s damn true!

So we have an out-of-shape comedian teaching a professional wrestler a move that has the ability to defeat other professional wrestlers. Yep, that’s pro wrestling for ya!

2. Bastion Booger’s “Trip to the Batcave”

Ahh, the WWE’s Golden Age. When professional wrestling was riding a wave of popularity thanks to wrestlers like Hulk Hogan, The Ultimate Warrior, “Ravishing” Rick Rude, King Kong Bundy, The Big Boss Man, The Honky Tonk Man and many others. Of course this list of memorable WWE Superstars wouldn’t be complete without… Bastion Booger?

Bastion Booger’s gimmick was an overweight slob of a man who used his massive girth to destroy his opponents. He was generally a glorified upper tier jobber; he would beat other jobbers but would lose to the bigger named stars. Yet, he’s the kind of WWE Superstar that sticks out because of his rather “unique” gimmick. And with a disgusting gimmick, you gotta give him a disgusting finishing maneuver, the aptly named Trip to the Batcave.

Bastion Booger’s Trip to the Batcave is a mortifying finishing move but not for the right reasons. Ignoring the fact that Bastion Booger has to do his “sexy dance” for the moment, a seated senton press from a man of his size should be able to crush a man and I would believe that it could knock a person unconscious. Unfortunately, the WWE usually doesn’t mention the massive weight of Bastion Booger crashing onto a man’s face as being the most terrible part of the Trip to the Batcave. What they usually focus on is the alleged stench that his bottockal region exudes and that’s what actually incapacitates Bastion Booger’s opponents. Yes, it’s the smell not the weight that makes the Trip to the Batcave the tremendous weapon it is.

3. Scotty 2 Hotty’s “The WORM”

Yes, I used all caps for the WORM because that’s how I feel you should spell it.

I think Scotty 2 Hotty is a very capable wrestler. He’s kind of like a lamer version of Shawn Michaels and, yes, that’s a left handed compliment if I ever saw one, but a compliment nonetheless. I think, in his heyday, he was almost as charismatic as The Heartbreak Kid but he had a certain goofiness to his style that never really made him a contender for the big time. There are even times I would say that Scotty 2 Hotty was even more athletic than Shawn Michaels. Why do I say this? Well, you’ve never seen Mr. Wrestlemania bust out a dance move like the WORM and incorporate it into this wrestling repertoire, have you?

And, yes, I said “dance move” instead of “wrestling move” because that’s exactly what the WORM is. Basically, what Scotty does is, after a bulldog slam, he does some theatrics, then the WORM and, finally, a diving chop to the opponent. The only reason why the move worked in the wrestling world was because it was incredibly entertaining to watch. Imagine, all that buildup and the dancing just for a singular chop? That’s just hilarious!

4. Sgt. Slaughter’s “Knuckle to the temple”

Sgt. Slaughter was already a wrestling legend by the time he returned to the WWE. He would usually close out his matches with his patented Cobra Clutch, which is a variation of a rear naked choke hold. It made sense that he would use a move like this because he was a soldier and soldiers are known for using rear naked choke holds to take out the opposition. Unfortunately, the WWE has a loose idea of what “patented” means because the Million Dollar Man Ted Dibiase started using the Cobra Clutch and calling it the Million Dollar Dream. So, what was Sgt. Slaughter to do? He couldn’t use the Cobra Clutch while in the WWE. He did what any other wrestler would do: make a new finisher up and call that the Cobra Clutch. Too bad it’s a ridiculous move!

I refuse to call whatever Sgt. Slaughter was using the Cobra Clutch because that would be wrong. I’m calling it by what he actually does to his opponent, which is drill his knuckle into the side of the head. You know what that is? It’s a noogie. Okay, it’s a noogie done by a former drill sergeant but a noogie nonetheless. You’re telling me a playground act of hooliganism is the best thing he could think up? And you’re telling me it’s powerful enough to cause a person to tap out from the pain? That must be some really incredible knuckle power!

5. Mick Foley’s “Mandible Claw”

When it comes to wrestling hardcore legends, none will ever come close to the legacy of Mick Foley. He has had a long, illustrious career of performing dangerous stunts in the ring for our amusement and we love him for that. He’s earned multiple championships throughout his tenure in the WWE and is regarded to be one of the most iconic professional wrestlers to be alive today. Not bad for a man who started his career in the WWE as a mask wearing psychopath who loved hanging around in basements and boiler rooms! Also, not bad for a guy who has one of the most nonsensical finishing maneuvers in all of wrestling, the Mandible Claw.

While I get the implications of the Mandible Claw is to cause extreme pain to your opponent, I just have so many questions about it. For one, how does it work? Initially, it was supposed to be Mankind/Mick Foley would thrust his middle and ring fingers down their throat, causing them a choking sensation without actually choking him out. The Mandible Claw was then changed to a nerve hold where Mrs. Foley’s Baby Boy would squeeze the underside of the jaw with his thumb while the fingers press down on the tissue underneath his opponent’s tongue. The WWE can’t really keep its story straight.

Also, wouldn’t the Mandible Claw be an illegal move? If I consistently push my finger in my opponent’s eye and call it a “nerve hold,” that just wouldn’t fly because having contact with something like that would be illegal! I love the move to bits but I just can’t figure out how it works! Oh, fun fact: it’s the only wrestling finishing move you can apply to yourself… which I have tried.

Don’t judge me.

BONUS: Joey Ryan’s “YouPorn Plex”

I’m not even going to describe this move. I’ll just let the video do the talking.

So big, so strong indeed.

The only reason why Joey Ryan’s YouPorn Plex isn’t part of the official list here is because it’s not his finisher. That’s the truth.

What other ridiculous finishers do you see wrestlers perform? Let me know what they are in the comments below!

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