A heel tends to use all sorts of devious tricks to get ahead – and there is nothing more devious that gaining an unfair advantage by using a foreign object on the beloved baby face with the referee’s back turned.
Some superstars have made a career by flattening their opponents illegally during their matches – be it Triple H’s dreaded sledgehammer, Edge and Christian’s patented Con-chairto or even Tajiri’s green mist. But nothing compares to the traditional heel favourite – the brass knuckles.
A shot with the brass knucks made a believable one punch – sure fire three count move and many superstars have utilised the same to great effect.
Here is a look at five guys who loved to use brass knucks in the ring.
#1 William Regal
William Regal picked up more victories in a WWE ring using the dreaded brass knucks than using his Regal Stretch finisher, which tells a lot about how potent a weapon the knucks were in Regal’s arsenal.
Regal made his bones in the WWE as a snobby British aristocrat in the new millennium. Regal had a host of Intercontinental and European title runs and most of them were aided by the use of brass knuckles.
He even had a rivalry with Edge in 2002 centred around Regal's use of brass knuckles in matches. It resulted in the abysmal idea of ‘brass knuckles on a pole’ match, but the concept of the knucks fit in perfectly with Regal’s heel persona.
The high maintenance Brit stooping to the lows of the knucks to get a victory – classic heelery!
#2 ‘Wild Bull’ Curry
The originator of the hardcore style of wrestling, Bull Curry terrorised the various territories of the NWA in the 1950s and 60s. The man was so ferocious that he sparked all-out riots in multiple arenas when he performed, punched multiple fans who tried to attack him and was even arrested for using a cinder block on an opponent.
Curry, who got his nickname from subduing a wild bull during his days as a policeman, was so unruly that the NWA bookers refused to put the NWA Heavyweight title on him despite Curry being the most entertaining figure in Texas that time.
No matter, a compromise was forged and Curry was allowed to win a new title – the NWA Brass Knuckles Championship – created specifically for him owing to his penchant for using brass knucks in the ring.
#3 Ric Flair
Ric Flair wouldn’t be known as the ‘Dirtiest player in the game’ if he did not resort to every trick in the book to get a win – which means using brass knuckles was always an option for the Nature Boy.
Flair would often hide the knucks inside his trunks and use it when the referee was distracted – more often than not by one of his Horsemen buddies. He would even have his enforcer Arn Anderson use the deadly device to great effect.
Flair would use the knucks during his final run with the WWE as well, against upcoming stars like Shelton Benjamin.
#4 Roddy Piper
Agreed, Piper’s mouth was stronger than any other weapon in his arsenal – but this beloved heel wasn’t averse to using the knucks to gain an unfair advantage in the ring. Piper has used brass knuckles a number of times, but never more famous than in a tag team match involving Andre the Giant and Jimmy Snuka.
Piper clocked the behemoth Andre with the knucks and the former World Champion was busted open and taken to the back – Never was the strength of a brass knuckle punch more displayed than on that night.
#5 Chris Jericho
Chris Jericho is not the man that comes to your mind when you think of brass knuckles, but Y2J has used the knucks multiple times in his career.
Before the introduction of the Codebreaker, Jericho did not have high impact finishing manoeuvre to beat his opponents - with submission victories via the Walls of Jericho hard to come by. Y2J would rely on cheating tactics to pick up tainted victories and many of them came with the help of the knucks.
He would beat his old rival Kevin Nash on Raw using the knucks in a hair vs hair match, would beat down the then WWE Champion John Cena using the same – the list goes on and on!