Posted by James Tee
Hello and welcome back to another installment of the Pro Wrestling Culture Cloud (PW2C)! Throughout this blog, you will be introduced to several aspects of the wrestling business, ranging from mainstream topics to the trivial, little known facts. Our only goal is to help you discover and refine your knowledge in pro wrestling while having fun and sharing your passion with other fans… You’re welcome!!!
Note: here is a nice Wikipedia pro wrestling glossary that I recommend everybody to read so that you get more familiar with the pro wrestling jargon.
The Enzuigiri is the pro wrestling name given to the “Jumping High Kick”. It was made famous by Japanese legend Antonio Inoki, and it is generally used by lighter wrestlers… and by Kane. A simplified and approximate translation of the name yields the name “Back-head Kick”, where enzui stands for the -lower brain part- Medulla Oblongata, whereas giri literally means to chop or to cut. The giri part is the same as kiri in the word harakiri (that may sound more familiar to Japanese culture fans).
As explained, the Enzuigiri targets the back of the head, but it is usually confused with the Gamengiri, the “Side-head High Kick”. Both moves have two possible initial attacks; it is either a feint kick that turns into a lariat kick with the other leg, or a blocked kick that the attacker turns into a second one with the other leg. The Running Enzuigiri is a nice offspring, and was often used by Chris Jericho.
The Spear has become a very popular finisher move these two decades, mainly thanks to Goldberg, Edge and to a lesser extent, Rhyno. Technically, it is a “Running Shoulder Block Takedown”, but this name is avoided since, in kayfabe, the attack is supposed to knock the opponent out, not down. The name Spear comes from the fact that the attacking wrestler mimics the trajectory of a spear (the weapon) with his body. It is one of the moves that can be executed in almost any situation, including from the top rope. However, the aforementioned wrestlers generally like to taunt their downed opponents from a corner.
The Spear has been used in some unique ways over the years, examples being Edge’s spear from a ladder, Goldberg spearing Chris Jericho through the Elimination Chamber glass cell, and Edge spearing Foley through a flaming table. Goldberg’s version is powerful, but it was known for legitimately hurting a lot of his opponents.
Here is a personal note. I have been watching wrestling way before I learned English (not my mother tongue). Years later, I could easily recognize the DDT, that move where a wrestler Facelocks his opponent’s head and falls down on his back, but I never figured out what the letters stood for until now. Enough for now lil Jimmy!
The DDT is attributed to Jake ‘The Snake’ Roberts who claims it was invented by accident. The abbreviation originates from a pesticide whose full chemical name is DichloroDiphenyTrichloroethane, but claims as to how the choice refers to the brain damage both the product and the move can inflict remain unconfirmed. Consequently, several candidate names came up, of which two stood up as the most likely due to the use of Damien, the name of Jake’s snake: “Damien’s Death Trap” and “Damien’s Diner Time”. Besides these stories, the DDT has a twin sibling where the initial Facelock is inverted, thus giving it the name Inverted DDT. You can take a look at several variations of the move in this video tribute.
Time for the aerial move of the day! The Moonsault is technically known as “Backflip Press” and it is mostly used as a top rope dive. The attack is generally attributed to Satoru Sayama, the original Tiger Mask. In the United States, the move was made popular by Japanese legend Keiji Mutoh (aka The Great Muta). The latter is the reason behind the name since the fans first called it the “Muta Sault”, which evolved into “Mu-Sault” and ended up as the Moonsault. Nowadays, the Standing Moonsault is also common. Other variations include the Springboard Moonsault from which Chris Jericho derived his Lionsault, and whose outside the ring version, the Asai Moonsault, is named after Yoshihiro Asai (aka Último Dragón). John Morrison’s Starship Pain is also an offspring whose technical name would be “Split-legged Corkscrew Moonsault”.
5. Boston Crab
Originally named the Boston Club, the earliest known use of this submission hold takes us back to the 30s where a Greek wrestler named Jim Londos reached fame. The submission is done by putting the opponent face down on the mat, hooking his legs under the armpits and applying pressure by pulling them. It can be also be used on one leg as a Single Leg Boston Crab.
The original version has become a common filler submission during matches (meaning the victim always ends up escaping the hold), but some variations are still used as finishers. For instance, the elevated version, which puts pressure a little higher on the back, is what Chris Jericho calls the Walls of Jericho. The Tarantula, one of Yoshihiro Tajiri’s signature moves, is a Boston Crab applied on the ropes.
Today’s move set was pretty Y2J’ish wasn’t it? In fact, it only lacks his signature Suplex with the cocky pin. Speaking of the Suplex, it will be the core topic of the next part of Calling the Moves. Make sure you tune in next week. Until then, enjoy this awesome double rotation Moonsault!
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