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The 7 - Pro Wrestling - Best/Worst Finish to a Match
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#1 Posted on 14.8.05 1732.26
Reposted on: 14.8.12 1732.27
I was talking with my brother earlier about some of the best and worst finishes to a match since we have watched wrestling. It got me thinking that there have been some brilliant finishes to matches, and equally sume dubious ones

We both agreed that one of the best came on Smackdown! in a match between Undertaker & Kurt Angle, with a title shot on the line. The match was classed as a draw, as Undertaker pinned Angle, who had a Triangle hold on him at the time, as the referee counted the 3 Undertaker seemingly tapped, this caused controvesy over the coming weeks.

Funnily enough, another good one came in a Kurt Angle match, against Kane on an episode of Smackdown!. At the time Kane, although not the monster he once was, had never submitted in his WWF tenure. During an excellent back and forward match Angle slapped on the ankle lock, and tried to get the Big Red Machine to tap out. The fans were willing Kane to break free, but Angle kept the Angle Lock synched in. Angle eventually had Kane in the hold for about 7/8mins, with Kane coming close to breaking free a number of times, before eventually succumbing to Angle. It really helped push Angle back to Main Event.

One of the worst had to be the Hulk Hogan vs Sid Vicious debacle at WrestleMania VIII, with botched interference by Papa Shango.

What is everyone elses thoughts on some great, and crappy finishes to matches?
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#2 Posted on 14.8.05 1931.43
Reposted on: 14.8.12 1936.24
I have two words for ya: DUSTY FINISH.

Those are never good ways to finish a match, in my opinion.

I thought the end of the Jeff Hardy/Undertaker ladder match from the first Raw Roulette (?) was awesome. If not for the actual finish of the match, but having Jeff call out the taker THREE TIMES, having his ass handed to him the subsequent times, and then receiving the hug/arm raise/hair tussle bit. I loved that.

(edited by SOK on 14.8.05 1835)
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#3 Posted on 14.8.05 2333.59
Reposted on: 14.8.12 2334.27
I'll agree with the ones already mentioned here (Angle/Undertaker dual pin/tap out, Kane first submission, Hardy calling Undertaker back several times).

I liked the Steamboat/Savage ending, since back then I had not seen the "small package out of nowhere to win" finish prior to that...the quality of the match that preceded it didn't exactly hurt it either. I also enjoy any match where the "wrong person" is cheered by the majority of the crowd and they end up winning (Undertaker beating Hogan at Survivor Series 91, Lesnar beating Rock at Summerslam a few years back).

Crappy finishes...Hogan getting beat by Undertaker for the Undisputed belt a few years ago, Hogan sandbagged and barely left his feet for the chokeslam at the end. I'm also not a fan of endings that go against what the crowd is begging for...a few that spring to mind are Hogan vs. Rock at WM18, Kane vs. HHH on Raw where Kane lost and lost the mask, and Flair vs. HHH on Raw where they did the big tribute to Flair thing at the end.
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#4 Posted on 14.8.05 2354.32
Reposted on: 14.8.12 2359.01
Some of my favorite finishes to matches have usually fed into a character. Take, for example, Chris Benoit. The WWE's gone to great lengths since he came to the company in 2000 to establish him as a technical guru without peer (except maybe Kurt Angle). Benoit, heel or face, cannot be beaten cleanly...except if you outsmart him.

Examples: SummerSlam 2004 (Benoit's dive to the outside weakens his neck, Orton works it over and hits RKO outta nowhere for the clean pin), WrestleMania X7 (Angle & Benoit keep reversing each other's holds until Angle grabs the tights for the pin), No Mercy 2000 (Benoit & HHH keep reversing stuff, but Stephanie distracts ref long enough for H to hit a low blow and hit the Pedigree for the pin).

See Also: The fantastic Shelton Benjamin/Shawn Michaels match from RAW earlier this year. Both guys wouldn't quit, and Benjamin only won because he made a mistake and Michaels capitalized.
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#5 Posted on 15.8.05 0020.14
Reposted on: 15.8.12 0025.06
Please, let's cool it on the "best/worst (x)" threads
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#6 Posted on 15.8.05 0026.08
Reposted on: 15.8.12 0029.01
I can't think of a HHH match from the last three years that he won where the fans weren't begging for the opposite finish.

The best thing about the Kane finish where he tapped to Angle, was that he tapped ONCE. He just tapped the mat one time, showing anger that he couldn't escape but also acknowledging that he'd been beat. It put Angle over while Kane still totally kept his balls.

Another finish I liked was the Rock/Austin Mania 17 finish (there is no such number as X-7 and I will not pretend there is). That match was booked meticulously. Austin, on his home turf, slowly but surely is outperformed by a younger, stronger, hungrier opponent. His frustration shines through, you can feel his anger as he struggles to put away someone who he had always been able to beat before. He can't do it with any of his finishes, and finally with McMahon's help, he starts using the chair, and still can't do it. At last, he just pounds him into the dirt with the chair and pins him.

Some people complain that Austin as a heel didn't work, and yes, it did go against the grain so to speak, but for my money it was the only time in his WWE run I ever enjoyed watching him. It was after his fusion procedure so he was taking proper bumps, which he hadn't been doing from late '97 to '99, a two-year run of punch kick thesz press flip-off-elbow-drop and kick-wham-stunner. As a heel, Austin could actually work. He got a little paranoid toward the end there with his pseudo-job to Kurt Angle and whatnot, but it was still some good stuff.

As for bad finishes the ending of 'Mania 2000 was unequivocally retarded. Yes, they popped a big buyrate for the backlash title swap, but it was still seen by millions less people worldwide. They would have done the same buyrate for Backlash anyway, especially with Austin returning to be the enforcer or the special ref or whatever he was. Heh, remember CRZ's recap of Ross' reaction to that announcement. "Ross has six orgasms." So yeah, 'Mania 2000 was the worst finish in wrestling history, on the basis of sheer scale.
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#7 Posted on 15.8.05 0027.46
Reposted on: 15.8.12 0029.01
Call me an old school mark, but there is still nothing that beats a clean pin by a face over a heel after overcoming all odds, maybe with a couple near-misses between. Prime example: Benoit vs HHH vs HBK at WMXX. Rock vs Hogan at WMX8 wasn't too shabby either.

My vote for Worst Finish is any DQ loss when a championship belt is on the line. See: 90% of HHH matches.

BTW, this seems as good a time as any to ask, but what exactly is a "Dusty Finish"? I'm guessing I've seen them many times before, and just didn't know that's what they were called? I'm also guessing that they're named after Dusty Rhodes?
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#8 Posted on 15.8.05 0039.32
Reposted on: 15.8.12 0039.41
I actually liked the Mania 2000 finish. It was away from the norm of big babyface wins and it was still a great ending to have a seriously pissed Rock come back and take out everything in sight. What made is good was that it was different.

Best finish would maybe be at the No Mercy 99 ladder match where Jeff got pushed onto the second ladder and kncoked edge off, grabbed the sack and then took an halacious bump. Great ending to a great match.

That Angle/Taker double pin/tap might be best suited in the ''worst'' catagorey since the first time they tried it, Taker blew it and then they had to go out and retape it.
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#9 Posted on 15.8.05 0041.29
Reposted on: 15.8.12 0041.58
A "Dusty finish" is when the face appears to have won the decision, and a title, usually through the intervention of a referee who was not the original official assigned to the match (the first one likely having been knocked out). The face celebrates with the fans, hoisting his newly won belt, but then the original referee wakes up and restarts the match with the heel this time prevailing, or outright reverses the decision and awards it to the heel. It is indeed named after Dusty Rhodes because he used it to the point of being ridiculous when he was booker for Crockett Promotions, I believe.

edit (additional dusty finish thoughts): It is generally considered an undesirable booking practise because it toys with the emotions of the fans. Verne Gagne did it so many times with Hogan in the AWA in '83, that you could argue it hurt his promotion irreparably. Granted, in retrospect, since Hogan hadn't agreed to the deal Verne wanted to lock him into, you can see why he couldn't bite the bullet and put the strap on the Hulkster, but telling him he wanted a piece of his Japan money and any movie money he made in the future was probably not the best negotiation method in 1983(Verne being from a time where you could treat wrestlers like complete trash and they'd agree because they had nowhere to go, no education, and likely feared you).

Anyway, getting seriously off-track here, more to the point, you only get to do a first title win once. So if you pull back too many times, that final payoff may never ignite the emotion that it would have had fans not been party to thriteen dress rehearsals.

And hhhgamewmx7, I see what you mean, but on a show that costs fifty bucks I'm not going for "different". Do that on a regular PPV, but when it costs me one of my balls to order it I don't want interesting experiments. They had eleven other PPVs that year to do interesting experiments (and they didn't).

(edited by Hogan's My Dad on 14.8.05 2254)
Parts Unknown
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#10 Posted on 15.8.05 0853.01
Reposted on: 15.8.12 0853.04
Finger poke of doom
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#11 Posted on 15.8.05 1037.21
Reposted on: 15.8.12 1037.30
I loved the Taker vs Orton one at this year's Mania, and Angle's one against Taker where his brother Eric pretended to be him. Great stuff.

However, I guess the all-time classic has to be Hogan vs Andre.

Wish there was a site somewhere that had clips of all PPV match finishes etc. If only we had access to the WWE's library of all televised match finishes ever : )
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#12 Posted on 15.8.05 1159.58
Reposted on: 15.8.12 1200.02
    Originally posted by Parts Unknown
    Finger poke of doom

I still laugh my ass off watching that 'match'. I actually consider that one of the better finishes of that WCW era.

The best and worst finish, for me, are both from the same match. It's the WCW World Title match from STARRCADE '98. It's got Scott Hall using and freaking cattle prod (with electrical tape on the end of it.) on Bill Goldberg to allow Kevin Nash to score the pin. That was, at the time, the stupidest thing I'd ever seen in wrestling, yet, at the same time, I couldn't help think that that was probably the greatest finish to a match I'd ever seen as well. doesn't seem to take much to amuse me, does it.

    Originally posted by Thingfish
    Angle's one against Taker where his brother Eric pretended to be him.

That was great live. We were sitting on the side where we couldn't tell that it wasn't Angle being pulled from under the ring and some of us were screaming bloddy murder that their olympic champion couldn't loose like that to the Undertaker. Luckily, it turned out for the best and Kurt kept his belt.

(edited by Cerebus on 15.8.05 1405)
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#13 Posted on 15.8.05 1300.01
Reposted on: 15.8.12 1300.26
Best finish: Bret and Austin's double turn at WrestleMania 13.

Worst finish: The hour-and-a-half between Pedigree and pin at WrestleMania XIX.
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#14 Posted on 15.8.05 1516.28
Reposted on: 15.8.12 1516.45
The first match that came to mind was that one episode of RAW when Degeneration X/Faction/Regime (come on, it changed every week) was ruling the air waves, so Im guessing it was in early 2000. Chris Jericho was doing his 'trashbag ho' spiel about Stephanie and Triple H runs down to the ring to defend his wife. Jericho challenges him to a match, but then he raised the stakes and made Triple H agree to a Title match.

As soon as that was cemented, the Acolytes came down to the ring and protected Jericho from any kind of run-in that the Regime/Faction/Degeneration Xv3.0 would potentially do. It was a match where Jericho sold the hell out of Triple Hs offense. There were a couple of 2 counts, Shane interfered and the gratuitous ref bump. Jericho overcame it all to cover Triple H to win the Title, thanks to an Earl Hebner quick 1-2-3 count.

Now, we know that Hebner subsequently got his ass beat for that and Jericho gave the Title back to Triple H, but that match stands out because I remember that when just that portion of the show was over, I had forgotten that there was still another hour and 30 minutes left. It was just one of those matches that you totally got into and lost yourself in being a fan.
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#15 Posted on 15.8.05 1559.40
Reposted on: 15.8.12 1559.49
The year of 2001 is notable for some classic matches with imperfect finishes.

- Austin vs. Hunter at No Way Out could've been ***** if they'd done a more decisive climax to their blowoff war instead of the double death fluke ending.

- Austin vs. Rock at Wrestlemania 17 could've been ***** if they'd kept Vince out of the match and not tried to turn Austin against a crowd that was going to explode for his title win no matter what he did.

- Austin vs. Angle at SummerSlam could've been ***** if they'd just done a finish, any old finish. Doesn't even have to be the tapout from the rematch.

- Rock vs. Jericho at No Mercy could've been ***** if Rock had tapped to the Walls of Jericho when St. Louis was begging him to do so instead of having the whole thing come down to Stephanie Marie McMahon's crap interference.
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#16 Posted on 15.8.05 1633.25
Reposted on: 15.8.12 1633.37
    Originally posted by JustinShapiro
    Austin vs. Rock at Wrestlemania 17 could've been ***** if they'd kept Vince out of the match and not tried to turn Austin against a crowd that was going to explode for his title win no matter what he did.

If they'd done that, it would have been the same match from WM 15, and Backlash a couple years before. Christ hick destoys blatantly superior athlete. BOOOO-RING.

Agreed on all the others.
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#17 Posted on 15.8.05 1811.51
Reposted on: 15.8.12 1811.52
The worst: David Arquette(sp?) wins the Title in that stupid tag match. I don't think I really need to comment on this one. It speaks for itself.

The Best: Survivor Series 97. Hey, it's still talked about to this day. It may have sucked in Bret's opinion but in a way it played a part in revolutionizing wrestling via butterfly effect. If it wasn't for Bret spitting on Vince's face, Vince may have never become the on camera pompous billionaire heel that hated having a blue collar beer drunk for a champion. Austin may have never fully grown in the draw that he became. etc etc etc.
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#18 Posted on 15.8.05 1845.16
Reposted on: 15.8.12 1845.23
Best Finish: WrestleMania VI. Hogan goes for the Big Leg, as he had always done in every WrestleMania up to that point, but this time it missed and he finally lost. It was a finish done with the class you wouldn't expect in the WWF at the time, but it was an iconic moment that would last regardless of what Hogan or Warrior did before or afterwards.

Worst: Never been a big fan of the WrestleMania 2000 finish. We'd seen HHH beat Rock and Foley in the past, we'd seen Vince turn heel. It really offered nothing that we hadn't seen in the past at that point. And the "McMahon in every corner" stipulation building to the "family reunion" at the end was the last thing that should have mattered.

As far as WMX7 goes, I've been mixed on that. I loved the match and was practically ***** up until that ending. At the same time, it was a unique, albeit anticlimacitc, ending. Just pounding a guy with a chair to death and "to hell with the rules" approach. The fact that the fans LOVED it when Austin "turned heel" redeems what they tried to do with the Austin character. There was just no stopping Austin at this time.

Oh, wait. There was. But that came after WMX7

(edited by SKLOKAZOID on 15.8.05 1645)
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#19 Posted on 15.8.05 1940.20
Reposted on: 15.8.12 1945.50
Sarcastically speaking: the "bowling shoe ugly" match between Jackie Gayda and trish Stratus. The entire match was so bad, the end came mercifully and thankfully. That was the first and only time I was happy to see the end of a wrestling match.
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