WWE superstars have had to fight for their rights like any other American hero you care to name. Some rights were given, others were earned through battle. Some rights were around for decades. So what's today's Amendment? One that was marvelous, yet deadly. Execution at it's best...
Amendment XVI—The Technical Wizards
We were always used to the powerhouses, the brawlers, the cheaters, the high flyers, and the rest. Once in blue moon would the WWE be a home where great technical wizards, the submission-ists, reside.
Throughout WWE history, there have been quite a handful of technical geniuses and they all have brought us outstanding finishers/submissions that left us at awe. The Camel Clutch, the Cobra Clutch, the Figure 4 Leg Lock, the Texas Cloverleaf, and many, many more.
One stood out and shined. Shined like a star. It was close to perfection. It was excellence, execution at it's best. Bret Hart was the man with the move. You talk about armbars, fireman carries, Russian leg sweeps, arm drags, suplexes, the works...but the Sharpshooter is above all.
Today it's nearly untouched, as Hart's move was excellence. Every time he locked it in, it was pretty much game over. If you haven't seen a move so radiant yet deadly, then this was your move.
Wrestlemania IX, the move was locked in on the great and mighty giant, Yokozuna. The pain was also felt by man others the likes of Owen Hart, Shawn Michaels, and even Stone Cold Steve Austin. Wrestlemania XIII would forever be historic as the two titans clashed in what would be one of the most epic bouts in Wrestlemania history....in WWE history.
This would be the only submission match in Wrestlemania history (I believe). Austin's brawling abilities were no match for Hart. Simple sleepers and headlocks just wouldn't cut it. Austin found himself in a world of trouble when Hart nearly perfectly executed the Sharpshooter on the Texas Rattlesnake. This might have been the best it was every executed.
Austin would try, try, and try some more, but it was no use. Stone Cold had too much pride and refused to tap out to Hart. The pain going through his body, the blood in his eyes, the excruciating pressure, Austin still wouldn't give in. He would pass out instead.
The Sharpshooter was the best thing since the Figure 4 Leg Lock, which also sent its victims to a world of pain. The Rock would be one of other wrestlers to use the Sharpshooter later on (HBK was the other). The attitude era lacked technical wizards, but for a brief while WWE would have Ken Shamrock.
The former WWE superstar and UFC legend had an arsenal of technical moves during his WWE tenure—suplexes, armbars, takedowns, anything to keep his opponents grounded. When the time was right, he would execute the ankle lock, another devastating submission that can sprain and or break an ankle.
Though Shamrock would take his leave, the ankle lock torch would be passed on to Kurt Angle. Kurt Angle is considered the best technical wrestler today. The man is a true wrestler. He took the Ankle lock to a whole new level when he modified it to the "Angle lock" and wrapped his legs around his opponents like a leg bar.
He wasn't the only warlock during his time...nope, there was Chris Benoit. If anyone could challenge and out work Angle in the ring, it was Benoit. He ate, drank, and slept technical moves. He had a chain of three German suplexes, which Angle himself picked up and did as well.
Angle and Benoit put on shows whenever the two got into the ring. The two each proved their technical dominance in the ring. In 2004, Chris Benoit lasted over an hour in the Royal Rumble to win it. This would result in his World championship match at Wrestlemania XX that year.
The match featured a triple threat match. It was Triple H vs HBK vs Chris Benoit.
This would be one of the greatest performances in Wrestlemania history. Benoit would make Triple H tap out to his deadly almost unescapable manuever, the Crippler Crossface. Benoit won the World Heavyweight championship and celebrated with Eddie Guerrero, another technical genius.
Benoit would prove this was no fluke as he would defeat Triple H two more times until losing to Randy Orton at Summerslam that year. If any match comes closest to emulating Bret vs. Austin, it would be Wrestlemania 21's Kurt Angle vs HBK In Hollywood, Calif. Kurt Angle would underestimate HBK, who once again put on a show like no other.
Angle would somehow survive about three sweet chin music superkicks. It was no submission match, but HBK's resistance nearly resembled Austin's. It took not one, not two, but three Angle locks to finally put HBK away.
That match would go down as one of the best ever. There are other sumbission-ists to have graced the WWE, but Flair and Hart passed this bill. Regulations are below.
1) Technical wizards must drag their opponents away from the rope when they are near.
2) Technical wizards must somehow counter almost any move into their submission.
3) Technical wizards work on one part of the body (sometimes).
4) Technical wizards must ignore the rope break if they're a heel.
5) Technical wizards like to use quick moves and keep opponents grounded whenever necessary.
Figure 4 Leg Lock
Ankle Lock / Angle Lock
Walls of Jericho
Cobra Clutch / Camel ClutchEvery other memorable submission