Kazuchika Okada tells the story of how the Rainmaker finishing move got its name.
During a Q&A with fans on the NJPW website, the former IWGP Heavyweight champion said the name was a reference to the American phrase and thought it looked cool and a natural fit for what he wanted to be in NJPW. Not only did the Rainmaker became the name of his finisher but also his nickname.
"But to make a long story short, it’s this American phrase connected to people that can come into a company and instantly make a ton of money for them, and I thought it would be a cool fit for me in NJPW. So it became my nickname. And then to make sure it was used and that brand of mine got strengthened, I made it the name of my finish, too," Okada said.
In regards to the actual move, Okada recalled seeing the wrist clutch and extension, the opening sequence of the Rainmaker resulting in a lariat, a lot in America. Okada thought it looked good and always wanted a finisher to lead into a lariat. The wrist clutch and extension was a perfect transition into the lariat in his eyes.
"As for the move itself, you see that wrist clutch and extension quite a lot in lucha libre; I can’t remember the match, but I remember seeing it in America and thinking it looked cool. And I always thought something leading to a lariat would be a cool finish, so one was added to the other," Okada said. "Well, it just came down to thinking which would have more impact. Unleashing everything through a lariat like that is more powerful, I thought. Then again, if it were the other way round; if I used the lariat first time out, then the neckbreaker did more damage, then the Rainmaker would be very different today."
The full Q&A can be read at this link.