I decided to come up with my now top ten list of finishing/signature moves. I graded these moves as I will explain for each of them based on style, impact, and history regarding the moves. I went with the moves that I felt were the most meaningful and personal favorites and not all time favorite moves. So without further delay, here’s The Shark’s Top 10 Finishing moves.
10.) The 3-D/Dudley Death Drop (The Dudley Boyz) : To this day, the fact that there have only been two people to actually kick out of this move shows you something. When the move debuted in ECW, it was considered as devastating as an F-5. It was known for several things in its history such as breaking up The Eliminators, breaking up The Gangstas, putting the Sandman in the hospital, putting Beulah out of wrestling, and the fact that Chris Sabin and Masato Tanaka have been the only guys to ever kick out of that move, just shows how much of an impact that move has made in wrestling considering that except for those two guys, everybody else who was hit with that move was down for the count.
9.) Sweet Chin Music/Superkick (Shawn Michaels) : The very sound you hear when that move just cracks against somebody’s head, you’d expect the head to go flying off. Look at Bret vs Shawn at Mania where we saw HBK take an announcer out with that move outside the ring. Yeah it’s not really a new move, but the fact that we’ve seen HBK make the crowd ooh and ahh over every single time he has connected with that move says something.
8.) Doomsday Device (Legion of Doom/Road Warriors, The Briscoes)- Let’s face it, LOD were the ones that got the ball rolling with that move. But the fact remains that the legacy among that move being used in Tag Team wrestling is carried on by The Briscoes. Whether it’s using the springboard method like Mark Briscoe used to do or just going with the traditional, the fact is the move still works and still wows the crowd.
7.) The Spiral Tap (AJ Styles)- The first X-Division championship match, we saw AJ Styles beat Jerry Lynn with that move. The timing and the precision use gave us a glimpse as to what AJ Styles was capable of in the ring and how he earned the title of “The Phenomenal One.” You don’t see many guys pull off that move and that just kinda adds to the ability of one AJ Styles.
6.) The Diamond Cutter/RKO (Diamond Dallas Page, Randy Orton)- Randy Orton has made a habit with the RKO to hit that move from any point, any position and any time and he’s made it work because it does do its job in dazzling the crowd when he pulls off that move. But DDP was the one that kickstarted that with the move. He was wowing people with that move on Nitro long before the move came to be in the WWE. DDP always said that when it came to the Diamond Cutter, you never saw it coming. He was good at pulling that off just as Orton is now with the RKO. But no matter who owns that move or what name its had, it has laid out plenty.
5.) The 630 Splash (Jack Evans)- To this day, I’ve only seen Jack Evans pull off this move. It was one of the things that made me take notice when Wrestling Society X debuted on MTV. I’ve seen both the normal version and the Phoenix 630 Splash and much like with the Spiral Tap, the amount of timing to get the move to look right takes skill. Not enough spinning, it just looks like a 450 Splash and that move is hard enough, but the guy pulls off the right amount of spins like it is second nature to him, is just talent.
4.) The Top Rope Brainbuster (El Generico)- I’ve seen this move and every time I see the move, I keep wounding how the hell somebody’s neck hasn’t snapped from doing that move. A Brainbuster is dangerous enough as is, but you’re dropping the guy’s head on the top turnbuckle for god’s sake. The only thing that has amazed me more than that move is that guys are still walking after it’s done.
3.) The Muscle Buster (Samoa Joe)- There have been people that gotten out of submission moves, especially from Samoa Joe but very few if any have been able to kick out of the Muscle Buster. The Muscle Buster has been one of those things that just add to why Samoa Joe is as good as he is. There is risk with the move as the wrong landing could seriously cripple somebody, but last I checked, whenever Joe has gone with the pinfall option as opposed to submission following the Muscle Buster, very few people if any have kicked out of it.
2.) Canadian Destroyer (Petey Williams)- Yet another move that I’ve very rarely seen people kick out of and there is plenty of risk with that move just as there is for any piledriver. The speed and timing of the move is key and I remembered when WWE tried to have Trevor Murdoch do the move and bombed at it, just shows that there are only certain people that can do that move the right way. The only person I’ve seen do the move or a variation of it is Teddy Hart when he did the Double Arm hook-up first and then the move.
1.) The Package Piledriver (Kevin Steen)- The reason that this move gets the top spot is one word: variation. Steen has done the move in the ring, on a chair (flattened and folded out), on tables, on both chairs (folded or otherwise) on top of a table, off the top rope and off the ring apron onto the outside. And the move looks brutal every single time he does it. The way is move is done is one thing, but the style in which Steen uses that keeps the move looking fresh, new, and an impact maker to the point where every time he does the move, you don’t think the guy is getting up and in the rare occurrence where you see the opponent, it adds to the drama as you are left wondering how the hell that person kicked out. For that reason among every other, that is why the Package Piledriver stands above the rest.