High-flying bodies, torso’s hitting hard on the canvas, chair shots, broken tables and so much more. Wrestling is indeed a dangerous sport and there’s no wondering why everyone is consistently reminded to not try any of the moves or stunts at home.
It is known for a fact that results and the storylines in wrestling is pre-determined. Matches are fixed, punches and kicks are held back, but the pain and effort to lift another human being is still there. After all, it’s pretty hard to control a body at momentum, regardless of whether you’re a professional wrestler or not.
If the consistent “please, do not try this at home” warnings are not enough to scare off would be John Cena’s and Seth Rollins’, some WWE moments could probably scare the pants off of anyone that wants to try out a few wrestling moves on their best buddies.
Since WWE airs live on TV, things can get pretty rated-R sometimes, thanks to some unfortunate mishaps and injuries in and outside the ring. Far too many wrestlers have suffered cringeworthy injuries on set, but there are a few others that stand out among the rest.
The list below reveals some of the moments that are too painful to watch - so expect blood, broken bones and a whole lot more. It’s not certainly for the weak of heart so be forewarned, these moments will make you wish you could erase a few memories from your poor little mind.
15 Ric Flair’s Last Stand
Let’s start this list of with something light and more emotionally painful than physically. The pay per view was WrestleMania XXIV and the match was set. It was “The Nature Boy” Ric Flair versus “The Heartbreak Kid” Shawn Michaels. It wasn’t any normal match, however.
The loser of the stipulation will be forced to forever walk away from the WWE. Career ending matches aren’t common in WWE so if fans get to watch two legends battle it for their jobs, it’s more of a torture than entertainment. These guys are some of the pillars of wrestling and no one wants to see any of them go.
The most painful part of the match is of course the ending. HBK was already done setting up his iconic Sweet Chin Music and before it connected, he said “sorry, I love you” to the opposing legend and close friend of his. The aftermatch was even sadder as we got to see Ric Flair in tears after his monumental career has ended.
14 McMahon Tears His Quads
This probably the only physical entry on this list that doesn’t involve actual wrestling but does include an injury. One the receiving end of the injury is none other WWE’s president, Vince McMahon. It was at Royal Rumble 2005 when McMahon tore both of his quads in a very funny fashion.
After a controversial decision between Batista and John Cena, officials got in the ring to finally settle the issue of who won. A few moments later, McMahon is seen angrily walking towards the ring with steps that could rival big boots from the big show.
Once he got near enough, he slid quickly into the ring. Upon standing up, McMahon tore his quad and had to go on with the script sitting down. It’s very confusing moment for fans as McMahon literally had no reason to sit down in the ring. No one knew by then that McMahon actually tore both of his quads.
13 Brock’s Shooting Star Press
This isn’t the only time that Brock Lesnar’s going to appear on this list. It is however, the only entry where he’s the one getting hurt. Lesnar and Kurt Angle were slated to face each other a WrestleMania 19. Before the pay per view, word got out that Angle is suffering from a neck injury. Fans worried for the Olympian but what they didn’t know was that he’s the one walking out of the match with an injury.
Lesnar was already a behemoth back then and with Angle’s performance affected by the injury, fans winced at every moment. Later on in the match, Lesnar attempted to try a Shooting Star Press. It was a very flashy flying move and it’s still difficult for a huge man to pull up. The launch was okay but things went wrong when Lesnar landed on his head horribly.
With both fighters visibly hurt, the match became more painful to watch. Both guys walked off from the match with aching bodies and fans had a lot of painful moments to keep as memories.
12 Kane’s Electrifying Torture To Shane
Most of the stunts and moves pulled off in wrestling is fake. Everyone knows that. There’s a bit of pain here and there but most of the physicality is held back. However, there are some moments that are obviously fake but are still way too painful to watch.
One such moment happened on an episode of Monday Night Raw. Kane was the current face of the storyline against Shane McMahon. As common storylines dictates, the heels or the villains are the ones that fans supposed to but this particular moment had fans rooting for Shane.
All tied up outside the ring, Shane was defenseless against Kane. Since Shane can’t fight back, Kane could do whatever he can and this includes electrocuting Shane’s… man parts. It was very painful to watch... especially for men.
11 Brock Lesnar’s MMA Moves At Display
This is one of the more recent entries on this list. At the most recent SummerSlam, Randy Orton, who just came back after a long hiatus, faced the beast incarnate himself - Brock Lesnar. Mind you, the latter just recently got a win over Mark Hunt, an MMA veteran, back in July, so he was pretty conditioned.
It’s apparent that Lesnar knows what he’s doing since the ground and pound techniques at display were top-notch. All was going well until an all-too-real elbow shot opened up a pretty huge gash on Orton’s head.
Elbow’s are the hardest point of the body and if you happen to be on the receiving end of it from a former UFC Heavyweight Champion, expect to be in a world of hurt. The referee had to call off the match as Orton was losing way too much blood. When the dust cleared, Orton had to get a total of 10 staples.
10 Eddie Guerrero And JBL’s Bad Blood
Back in 2004, then WWE Champion, Eddie Guerrero was in a very heated storyline against John Bradshaw Layfield aka JBL. The two went on to fight for months on end and out of all the moments they had squashing the beef with each other, one stood out the most.
One of the iconic matches that the two had, and probably one of the most memorable matches of 2004 was Guerrero and JBL’s matchup at Judgment Day. When the action switched to ringside, JBL hit Guerrero with a chair shot that could be awarded as the most authentic one in WWE history.
It wasn’t enough that blood was pouring down the face of Guerrero as the clip showed that the wrestler’s wound was squirting blood, not gushing it. It was obviously a blade job gone wrong as no wrestler is supposed to bleed that much.
9 Botched Promo By Hulk Hogan
Yet another injury free entry on this list, but believe us watching this botched promo by Hulk Hogan is enough to make any man cringe. We don’t know what exactly happened with Hogan’s tongue during his tirade against Vince McMahon. We can’t fully understand what Hogan is trying to say but we can get a grasp of what he’s trying to get through.
There were literally a lot of botch lines in the tirade. It includes accidentally calling himself a “gay guy,” and a very confusing take on the “right guy, right place” line. We have to give props to McMahon for not showing any signs of laughing during the duration of Hogan’s struggle with words.
8 Hardcore Holly Meets Brock’s Powerbomb
During 2004’s Royal Rumble, Bob “Hardcore” Holly was slated to face Brock Lesnar in a one-on-one match for a WWE title match. It’s the basic David VS. Goliath match up. Even before the match, rumors spread that Lesnar and Holly didn’t get along very well.
In just a couple of minutes during the match, Lesnar delivered a sloppily performed powerbomb. The move caused Holly to land hard on his neck; breaking it. If that’s not enough, Lesnar even did a light tap on Holly’s neck even after it was apparent that the athlete was in deep pain.
The accident led fans to believe that there was an actual beef between the two but it’s not actually true. Holly himself confirmed in an interview that he and Lesnar worked very well with each other. In fact, Lesnar called Holly regularly during his recovery period to check up on how he was doing.
7 Hardcore Holly’s Most Hardcore Moment
WWE decided to revive ECW mid-2000’s and if there’s one thing ECW was known for, it’s hardcore matches. You’ve read about how Hardcore Holly’s neck was broken by Brock Lesnar, but this time it isn’t about broken bones anymore.
In an Extreme Rules match against Rob Van Dam in 2006, Holly had one of the nastiest looking and unintentional cuts in WWE history. Usually, when it comes to cuts in wrestling, the most common target is the forehead as it gives out more blood and is the safest area to blade; when done right. That’s not the case with Holly’s incident though.
When the table supplied by Holly finally got involved, RVD “turned the tables” around. Holly ended up being smashed on the table. When he got up, the broken table made a huge slice on his back. It was then revealed that Holly had to have 24 stitches on the wound.
6 Joey Mercury’s Ladder Accident
Back at 2006, Joey Mercury was in a fatal-four way ladder match at Armageddon. Anything that involved ladders, chairs or any other weapon for that matter can result in gruesome injuries. Armageddon 2006 will be remembered for one thing and one thing only - it had the bloodiest WWE injury in history.
Things were going smoothly for Mercury during the ladder match but things took a quick turn for the worst when bad timing got in the way of Mercury. His face was struck pretty hard with a ladder resulting in a broken nose and orbital bone. Fans stood in horror as Mercury scrambled outside the ring all bloodied up.
It’s apparent that something went wrong and the amount of blood was just too much for some to stomach. Mercury had to undergo surgery and a lot of stitches. Fans may have been wary of being around ladders after that incident.
5 The Most Talked About Match In Wrestling History
Both Mick Foley and The Undertaker are veterans in wrestling and both have already surpassed greatness in the industry. If fans are asked what these two’s defining moment would be, everyone will answer that it’s the Hell in a Cell match back at 1998.
The pay per view was King of the Ring and the entire event had good moments including Ken Shamrock winning the King of the Ring title against The Rock, and Kane beating Stone Cold for the championship belt. But all of these moments won’t come close to when The Undertaker threw Mankind down a 16-foot cage and into the Spanish announcer table.
It was career defining moment for both wrestlers but it was when fans were shown at how tough Mankind is. Foley got knocked out, suffered a dislocated jaw and shoulder, bruised ribs and the most painful of all, he got his tooth shoved up his nose. It isn’t very painful to watch at first glance but things got squeamish when Foley revealed where his tooth is after the match.
4 Stone Cold And Owen Hart’s Botched Piledriver
There are a lot of dangerous wrestling moves out there. One small miscalculation could cost a wrestler a few months of work thanks to injuries. In a singles match at SummerSlam 1997, Owen Hart and Stone Cold Steve Austin were causing cheers from the crowd with an amazing match. Everything was going well until a badly executed Piledriver broke Austin’s neck. Austin was trying to set up a Piledriver of his own up until Hart countered it. Austin was obviously way to low for the Piledriver and his neck caught both his and Hart’s weight when the move was executed.
Upon landing, Austin was obviously in pain. He was paralyzed for a moment and Hart knew that something was amidst. Hart had to stall the crowd to let Austin recover but instead of the match ending with Austin being stretchered out of the match, it ended with him winning via sloppy schoolboy pin.
3 The Streak Ends
Where were you when The Undertaker’s legendary streak ended? It was a sad night for wrestling fans worldwide at WrestleMania 30. It was a very unexpected moment in wrestling when Brock Lesnar defeated The Undertaker and became the 1 in 21 and 1.
The Undertaker’s 30-year-streak is perhaps one of the most monumental feats in wrestling and fans didn’t expect to end just like that. The entire Superdome audience; and the millions watching at home, stood in shock and in disbelief and the pain can be seen from their faces as the cameras panned for reactions.
Like Shawn Michaels and Ric Flair’s career ending match, this moment doesn’t involve any physical pain but we can all agree that seeing the seemingly unending streak of The Undertaker hurts a lot more than seeing wrestler get cut and broken.
2 Whenever Mick Foley Gets Into A Hardcore Match
Mick Foley/Mankind/Cactus Jack/Dude Love is the undisputed king of Hardcore matches. Whenever gets into a match involving weapons, fans know instantly that it’ll be a brutal one. Blood, possibly broken bones and other painful things are in store whenever he enters the ring with a weapon.
Some of his highlights include a tooth getting shoved up his nose, him getting screwed up with a barbed wire and someone ending up with a lot of thumbtacks on their back. Foley’s Hardcore match ups aren’t for the squeamish and these same people are probably thankful that WWE got into the PG-era.
If we were asked what our favorite Foley moment was, we’d probably pick the one where he was smashed with a flaming baseball bat by Tommy Dreamer.
1 The Montreal Screwjob
This is probably one of the most controversial, not to mention defining moments in wrestling history. This moment showed how things could get too real inside the squared circle, no matter how scripted and pre-determined things are. It was a particularly painful moment for Bret "The Hitman" Hart's fans.
Hart was determined to leave the WWF back in 1997. Where was he going to next? WWF's biggest rival back then of course, WCW. Hart's last match in the WWF was against Shawn Michaels. The WWF title was on the line and there was no better way for the WWE to send off Hart than in his motherland, Canada.
Hart has been a vital part of WWF since 1984 and Vince McMahon was a bit bitter seeing him leave. McMahon didn't want Hart to leave with the belt, but Hart sure as heck didn't want to lose the belt to Michaels. It's usually the audience that don't know the outcome of a match, but this time, The Hitman wasn't aware that he'd lose the belt to Michaels that night. Reactions were raised but it was very painful to see Hart get betrayed by the industry he helped establish.
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