Top 10 Most Effective Wrestling Finishers of All Time

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Posted on January 9th, 2008

In the world of professional wrestling, nothing can stamp the dominance of a wrestler than an effective finisher. Wrestling greats, such as The Rock and Stone Cold Steve Austin have made a name for themselves by wrecking havoc in the wrestling ring using their devastating finishing maneuvers. A wrestling finisher can be a single high impact move or a combination of spectacular moves put on by a wrestler. It can even be the use of a weapon, as long as it finishes matches.

Submission maneuvers were not added to this list because wrestlers can escape the hold by simply touching the ropes. Submission wrestlers have to use their finishers several times before getting the victory. You will also notice that some famous finishers didn’t make it to this list. Remember, we’re after the most effective finishers and not the flashiest ones. Once these ten finishers are performed, victory is undeniably certain. Now to kick off this list, let’s proceed with number ten.

10. The Jackhammer

A winning streak is pretty normal for rising stars in any wrestling outfit, but when that winning streak breaches the 100 win mark, that new guy must be bullet-proof. Goldberg did just that when he made his debut in World Championship Wrestling (WCW). During his streak, he destroyed most of his opponents using his vaunted finisher, The Jackhammer. What’s even more startling is that Goldberg’s wrestling entrance lasted even longer than most of his matches during that streak. He eventually won both the WCW and the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) titles using his devastating finisher.


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9. Hogan Leg Drop/The Warrior Drop

Legends are called legends due to their superior execution of moves. Both Hulk Hogan and The Ultimate Warrior used very simple moves for their finishers, but through excellent execution and sheer strength they have effectively used their simple finishers toward lengthy title reigns. The only wrestlers known for kicking out of The Hogan Leg Drop and The Warrior Drop are Hulk Hogan and The Ultimate Warrior. Both incidents happened during their only encounter for the WWF title. It doesn’t come as a surprise that this match was eventually named as one of the greatest matches in wrestling history.

The biggest leg drop in wrestling history, Literally!

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Wrestling factoid: The Ultimate Warrior legally changed his legal name The Ultimate Warrior. Talk about staying in character.

8. The Honky-Tonk Man Guitar

When the weapons used in wrestling are brought up in conversation, the items that usually come up are the steel chair, the wooden table and Triple H’s sledgehammer. Who wouldn’t fear that hammer-wielding Thor look-alike? If you delve into the annals of wrestling history, there was a weapon that is more efficient in producing victories. In fact, it is notorious enough to bring the Intercontinental titles to its wielder. This item is the acoustic guitar used by The Honky-Tonk Man in the 80s. That fat Elvis-impersonator made his own brand of music using his guitar. His favorite symphony happens to be the head-on-wood concerto that he played en route to his numerous Intercontinental Title reigns.

The Honky-Tonk Man bashes a fan with his guitar

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7. Sweet Chin Music

It can come anytime, anywhere and in almost any situation. It will hit you just when you think you have the upper hand. It is the finishing maneuver called Sweet Chin Music. Shawn Michaels has marked his career with his flashy finishing maneuver. This swift high kick to the chin always came when his opponents least expected it. Legends like Bret Hart, Kevin Nash and Sid Vicious have felt its full effects, which resulted in wins by The Heartbreak Kid. Regardless of weight class, if you are not ready for Michael’s dreaded finishing maneuver, you’re the only person who won’t be able to hear Michaels make beautiful music with your chin.

A painful sweet chin music to Shelton Benjamin

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6. The People’s Elbow

There are two big reasons why The Rock refers to The People’s Elbow as “The Most Electrifying Move in Sports Entertainment History!” The first reason is that no other wrestling move has elicited a louder crowd reaction than his stylized version of the regular elbow drop. The other reason is that his opponents stay down right after. Contrary to the popular belief that The Rock Bottom is his better finisher, The Rock won most of his pay-per-view matches using The People’s Elbow. There were several instances when some of The Rock’s opponents kicked out of The Rock Bottom and went on to battle back into the match. On the other hand, very few wrestlers managed to even kick out of The People’s Elbow. Evidently, this finisher is your biggest reason to smell what The Rock is cooking.

The most electrifying move in sports entertainment, the People’s Elbow

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5. Stone Cold Stunner

“Stunner! It’s the Stone Cold Stunner!”

This line used to be the default dialogue in almost every match of wrestling legend Stone Cold Steve Austin. No other wrestling finisher is probably as famous as The Stunner. This swift finishing maneuver has downed each of Austin’s greatest rival countless times, including WWE chairman Vince McMahon. This modified jawbreaker gained infamy when Austin started interrupting wrestling matches and stunned wrestlers at random. Fast and simple, The Stunner is very easy to deliver. After a decisive kick to the gut, Austin positions the head of his opponent atop his shoulder then drops to the ground using his own weight and the force of gravity. This effective finisher doesn’t spare even the largest of wrestlers because no lifting is involved. It just comes out of nowhere and takes championship belts.

A stunner to John Cena and The Big Show

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4. The Jackknife Powerbomb

The powerbomb stands as one of professional wrestlings deadliest maneuver. Now, imagine it being delivered by a hulking 7-footer. The Jackknife Powerbomb is the deadly finishing maneuver made famous by Kevin Nash. Nash used it to power his way to both the WWE and WCW titles. He often left his opponents unconscious even before he covered them for the win and eventually for the world championship. There was even a time when WCW banned this finisher because of the carnage that it left.

Diesel nails the Undertaker with 2 Jackknife Powerbombs

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3. The Razor’s Edge

No other finisher looks more dangerous than the crucifix suplex that Scott Hall, aka Razor Ramon, uses to make human doormats out of his opponents. Hall fondly calls this move The Razor’s Edge. It is a fact that no one has gotten up or even kicked out of this terrible finishing maneuver. Hall’s opponents usually tried to beat him before he decided to use his finisher. All of his losses were close calls as his opponents managed to escape his grasp when he was about to deliver The Razor’s Edge. Fortunately for the hordes of wrestling fans, some of those matches went on to become some of the greatest matches in WWE history.


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The sole reason why this move isn’t in the number two position of this list is because he never won a world title with it.

2. The Pedigree

Triple H is one of the greatest wrestlers to ever step into a wrestling ring. Called the Cerebral Assassin, he is smart enough to outthink all of his opponents as well as outwrestle them. Perhaps his smartest move of all is to select The Pedigree as his finisher. With the exception of John Cena, this move has downed every single wrestler that Triple H faced for the WWE title. Strange as it may sound, but most of Triple H’s opponents fear his finisher more than the sledgehammer that he wields. He isn’t known as The King of Kings for nothing.


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1. The Tombstone Piledriver

The Undertaker has intimidated and dominated almost every opponent that he faced in the wrestling ring for almost two decades. He even has a seemingly unbeatable 15-0 win-loss record at the WWE’s grandest pay-per-view, Wrestlemania. Behind The Undertaker’s image and list of achievements, lies the single most devastating finishing move in wrestling, the Tombstone Piledriver. The Tombstone Piledriver has destroyed legends, traumatized newcomers and cut-down giants.

Nobody gets up from the Tombstone. Every time that this finishing move was delivered, the Undertaker won the match. There was an instance when the wrestler named Kane kicked out of the pinfall attempt after receiving the Tombstone. Unfortunately for him, he was given another serving of the belly-to-belly piledriver before he could even get up.

The Undertaker gives Mark Henry a chokeslam and a Tombstone Piledriver

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Professional wrestling is pretty competitive, especially when some of the biggest names are gunning for the title. Suplex after suplex, slam after slam, combating wrestlers engage a lengthy dance filled with strikes and grapples. Some wrestling matches last for only minutes, while some last for more than an hour. Through each of those matches, only one move proves to be decisive. Every wrestling fan knows it and every wrestler fears it.


Every wrestler have their own finishers to end the match also, every wrestler have their own Grand Entrances before starting a match. In that moment, you will see whose the crowd’s favorite. Grand entrances and bone-crushing maneuvers and finishers are the keys to became Popular.

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