Cesaro explains how circumstance and being a student of the game led to him having multiple finishing moves in WWE.
Cesaro is considered by many to be the best pound-for-pound pro wrestler in WWE. The hallmark of every pro wrestler is their finishing maneuver. Anyone who thinks of Shawn Michaels thinks of Sweet Chin Music. Anyone who thinks of Randy Savage thinks of the Atomic Flying Elbow Smash. Triple H is synonymous with The Pedigree, and Randy Orton has made a career out of one move in the RKO. Professional wrestlers are forever linked to their one move that can end a match in an instant.
It is very seldom in North American pro wrestling, especially in WWE, that wrestlers will have more than one finishing move. Cesaro is the exception to the rule.
With the Gotch-Style Neutralizer, The Sharpshooter, and a near-perfect uppercut that he can hit from a variety of positions, Cesaro is always prepared to add an extra layer of drama to any match at a moment's notice with his well-versed and well-established moveset.
Speaking on the Out of Character podcast with Ryan Satin, Cesaro explains he first arrived at having the Neutralizer as his main finishing hold and why he says he doesn't have any Neutralizer attempts that he regrets.
“When I came through the ranks of FCW, at that point, it was one of those like, 'Could you hit a finisher on everybody, like, even The Big Show? I was like, ‘Let me show you.’ It was one of those, like, that's when it was like, ‘Okay, so what move can I do that I literally could do to everybody after like 30 minutes of a grueling wrestling match, that I could do, you know, five to six days a week?’ It was like, I want to have something that's super effective, fun, and I can do to everybody. So thanks to that.
“I think like what is usually scary is if people are super sweaty, or they slip or something like that, but it's more that. There's nobody that I'm like, ‘Oh, that was terrible.’ It's always fun, too, if there’s somebody like Big Show, Khali, or Mark Henry. Like somebody that’s really big, that's like a challenge. Or then you find different ways to get into it. Do you know what I mean? So, I love it.”
Cesaro was then asked if he could take any legendary finisher and add it to his own repertoire, which move would he choose? Cesaro, of course, reminded Ryan that he has already done this with Bret Hart's Sharpshooter.
Explaining why he enjoys having so many different moves that can finish fights, Cesaro would point to his love of Japanese wrestling and the varying finishers that each wrestler has overseas.
"Well, [The Sharpshooter] is a finishing move, because I beat people with it, right? So to me, that would probably be it. So when I grew up, I was also a huge fan of Japanese wrestling, like New Japan, and what I really loved about it, because it's kind of -- you start with WWE, that was the first thing I saw on TV and I'm like, well, this is amazing. Then you learn about all the other stuff that exists, you know, WCW and then ECW, and so you just see all those different styles and then CMLL and AAA and then like, New Japan. It's like, Oh my god, there's so much different things going on and what I always loved about the Japanese style is like, they had a move, they had a submission, and they had a strike, and each of those could be the finish. Then those like random moves, a clothesline can be a finish for anybody, a German suplex can be a finish for anybody. So it puts that kind of unpredictability into their matches, that I may not have noticed before in others."
He continued, "So to me when I was like, Okay, I'm with WWE, so you have your finishing move with The Neutralizer. Then, there were horrible circumstances with Tyson Kidd['s forced retirement.] But then I was like, 'Cool, I want to pay homage to him; and then I asked Bret Hart as well for permission to do it. So then, it was really cool. Now I have The Sharpshooter. Then I was like, 'Oh, and I can do the uppercut.' I got that to a point where people believe it's a finisher because I beat people with it.
"So to me, it comes full circle to the beginning, when we talked about the different characters. Dusty Rhodes used to say, 'body of work.' So you know, it came back to me. So when people look back at my body of work, they can now see me in each of those incarnations and through that body of work, I was able to establish a moveset where so many things could be finished, which I think makes my matches more unpredictable. and hopefully, more fun to watch."
Even though he gave a perfectly reasonable explanation as to why The Sharpshooter would be the move that he would choose, because Cesaro is a professional, he, of course, had another answer for the question.
"Other than that, let's just say Tombstone would be a pretty cool finisher," Cesaro concluded lightheartedly.
Elsewhere in the interview, Cesaro talks about the very genuine relationship he formed with DaParty, Xavier Woods, Tyler Breeze, and Adam Cole. Learn more here.
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