10 necks bumps which are too nasty to watch twice
John Cena isn't the only wrestler to have nearly been killed by a nasty neck bump.
On the August 1st, 2017, episode of SmackDown Live, John Cena wrestled Shinsuke Nakamura in what WWE (and many of its fans) described as a ‘dream match’. But for some, that dream almost turned into a nightmare as the match reached its conclusion.
Right before Nakamura hit his Kinshasa knee strike for the pin and the win, he executed his signature Inverted Exploder on Cena to set up for that finisher. But something wasn’t 100% correct with that move: Cena took the move rather incorrectly and appeared to land square on his neck.
Many people watching were concerned for Cena’s health, and rightfully so. For Cena had just suffered what could very well have been his first head spike.
Head spikes and other moves that target the neck aren’t new to wrestling. In some promotions, it’s a common practice to make some moves more dangerous by making the victim land on their upper shoulders or neck on purpose.
These moves are known as head spikes and are intended to showcase brutality, toughness, and the willingness of the wrestlers involved to put themselves through incredible pain and danger just to win their matches.
John Cena’s head spike wasn’t the first, and it most definitely won’t be the last. But the ten head spikes and neck bumps listed here were so brutal and devastating that it’s difficult to see them more than once.
# 10 Mitsuharu Misawa’s Tiger Driver ‘91
All Japan Pro Wrestling (AJPW) during the 1990s was the home of the most dangerous and craziest wrestling moves on the planet. It combined traditional NWA-style grappling with stiff Japanese strikes, which led to a wrestling style known as King’s Road. A big component of King’s Road wrestling was the build-up of bigger and bigger moves, with certain ‘super-finishers’ being saved for special matches.
The Tiger Driver ‘91 was one such a move. Used mostly by Mitsuharu Misawa, the Tiger Driver ‘91 was a variation whereby the poor victim was dropped straight down onto their neck and shoulders. Misawa used this move throughout the 1990s, saving it only for those ultra-rare matches when his regular finishers weren’t enough to keep his opponents down.
Watching it now, it’s enough to make one cringe. The sight of a wrestler being driven downwards with barely enough time to break their fall with their shoulders makes this an ultra-dangerous move, to be sure.