Everything in wrestling is subjective, so when we try and put together a top 10 list in just about any category, it's going to be hard work.
When it comes to finishers, we had to make some basic criteria. First off, how powerful are they? The best finishers are the best protected and that means that hardly anyone kicks out or superstars nearly always submit.
How aesthetically pleasing they are is also important. How good are they on the eye, how original are they, and how does the crowd react when the move is about to happen/happens?
You also have to consider the big time moments these moves have had and how unique the move is itself. For example, John Cena's Attitude Adjustment has had plenty of prime time moments, but it really is just a Fireman's Carry Driver.
So, allow us to explain our picks and then we want to hear yours!
The Spear feels like it has been used by 1,000 people, but it is pretty much always a finish. Goldberg probably did the Spear the best, or Rhyno's Gore - which is still a spear - could also be considered the best. Either way, the lineage of the move speaks for itself: Edge, Charlotte Flair, Kaitlyn, Batista, Big Show, Goldberg, Rhyno and the list goes on.
Really, it's just a simple American Football-like tackle. It's not an intricate move by any stretch and really, although to varying degrees of excellence, anyone can do it. But, the legacy speaks for itself.
You know, it's really hard for a guy to make his move feared for well over 20 years, but that's what Triple H has managed to do with the Pedigree.
Furthermore, he passed the move down to Seth Rollins for a while and it was equally devastating for The Architect. In theory, Triple H hooks both of your arms and drives your face straight into the ground. One would imagine that does actually hurt. Seeing as it has brought The Game 14 world titles, it certainly deserves a spot on the list.
Booyaka booyaka! When you think of Rey Mysterio, you think of the 619. The set-up of the move sees superstars draped over the middle rope facing outwards and considering that literally never happens during a match besides when Rey Mysterio sets up a 619, it's a pretty ridiculous scenario and one you'd think people would see coming by now!
The crowd anticipation makes this move, though. It's totally unique and it is synonymous with arguably the greatest high-flyer in professional wrestling history. If Mysterio hits it, he usually wins.
The Curb Stomp
This is very inventive from Seth Rollins and when The Kingslayer had to stop using it for a while (Vince McMahon thought the name of the move sent the wrong message) fans were calling for it to return. It returned as Blackout but now goes by The Stomp and thus far, nobody gets up from The Stomp.
Rollins had had a very successful career in WWE and while his top rope knee strike and his use of the Pedigree was successful, The Stomp certainly feels like his. Everyone remembers his attempted Stomp at WrestleMania 31 and Rany Orton countered with a beautiful RKO. The Stomp is without question unique and deadly.
How can you not have the Tombstone? The move is synonymous with Kane and The Undertaker and save for a few special WrestleMania moments, nobody kicks out from the Tombstone.
It's a brutal piledriver that lifts the superstar upside down and drives his head into the mat. Think of all the special moments where The Undertaker has hit someone with a Tombstone and then did his iconic eye roll with his tongue sticking out... it's too good to miss out.
Unlike the Spear or Sweet Chin Music/Superkick, only Brock Lesnar has ever done the F5 in the WWE. Lesnar makes this move look particularly devastating because of how ridiculously strong he is in picking up some of his victims, but also the intensity and speed he puts on the twist before the slam.
There's no doubt this is a devastating move and Lesnar has the ability to hit it on anybody. All of the greats have fallen to the F5. The Rock, Undertaker, Triple H, Goldberg - all of them. As far as how moves look go, it's one of the stronger moves on this list.
Crippler Crossface/Yes Lock
Chris Benoit's Crippler Crossface and Daniel Bryan's Yes Lock are very similar in how they are applied, but there are some subtle differences in the actual lock of the arm and how they stretch their opponents. Still, this is a submission finisher that has one of the highest submission rates going.
The Figure-Four Leg-Lock and the Sharpshooter lost their luster as years after hordes of stars used Ric Flairs's and Bret Hart's finish respectively, and even the Ankle Lock that was so feared under the guidance of Ken Shamrock and Kurt Angle lost its way by the time it got to Jack Swagger. However, the Crossface has always been a fatal move and its prestige has remained intact. Plus, it damn well hurts.
The People's Elbow
This probably hurts the least on the list, but The Rock put all kinds of sauce on this finisher. Mick Foley has come out and said that Rock used to do this move just to 'pop the boys' in the back, but it became so popular with the fans it became a legit finish for The Great One.
It's all in the presentation. Rock stands over his downed opponent and slowly whips off his elbow pad for the early awaiting crowd to fight over, then he runs the ropes, skipping over his opponent before doing a trademark Rock flick of his elbow to drive it into their heart. Only The Rock could do it that way and the fact he named it the People's Elbow gave the fans even more affinity for it. (After it was the Corporate Elbow, of course).
Out of nowhere! The RKO has an extremely high win rate attached to it and given that Randy Orton can seemingly hit it out of nowhere makes it that much more enjoyable. More than that, Orton has hit it in a variety of ways that keeps the move fresh, like the aforementioned moment with Rollins at WM31 and everyone remembers the Shooting Star Press from Evan Bourne that Orton timed perfectly.
DDP - the master of the Diamond Cutter - passed the move down to Orton and all the now-13 time world champion did was speed up the set-up. With plenty of memorable moments and memes as a result of this move, it deserves its high spot.
Stone Cold Stunner
Could it really be anything else? In a time before John Cena did springboard Stunners and Kevin Owens randomly hit Stone Cold Stunners in the middle of matches, Stone Cold Steve Austin's finisher was, bar none, the most deadly finisher in wrestling.
Only a handful of guys can say they kicked out of that move and they typically came in huge, high profile matches. It was one of the most protected finishes of all-time and when you combine that with the fact Austin is the biggest star in the history of the business - and that the move is just cool and fun as hell - there are too many memories for it not to be number one. When he first hit the Stunner on Vince McMahon, that was a landmark day in wrestling!
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