The world of sports entertainment has provided us with sights and sounds that are rarely found anywhere else. Millions of fans around the world tune in to see their favorite superstars compete in the WWE and other wrestling promotions such as TNA, NJPW and ROH week in and week out. Professional wrestlers put their bodies on the line for the sake of our viewing pleasure which is why they deserve all the credit in the world. It’s hard enough to perform in front of the cameras but add in the traveling and the constant pressure of being in the best shape possible and you will find out that not everyone is cut out to be a wrestler. Of course when wrestlers such as Dean Ambrose and Charlotte Flair face off in the squared circle, there are moments in which things don’t go quite according to plan.
The term “botch” has been used to described the mishaps and mistakes that take place in the ring. Of course these mistakes don’t necessarily have to take place in the ring as miscues during promos and other segments have occurred as well. There are some wrestling botches that have resulted in injuries which is something we never want to witness. Therefore this list will not feature botches that resulted in serious injuries. Botches have led to hilarious videos such as the Botchamania series and other compilations featuring some of the moments our favorite wrestlers would most likely want to forget but fans still refer to every now and then. Here are the top 15 most memorable wrestling botches.
15. Randy Orton Doesn’t Watch His Step
Back in 2011, Randy Orton was taking on Kane in an episode of Smackdown. At one point the match found itself taking place outside the ring and the announcers table would eventually come into play. Kane attempted to chokeslam Orton through the table but “The Viper” showed off some of his athletic ability and countered the finishing move. Orton now found himself standing on the announce table that had its monitors removed prior to Kane’s attempt to put away his opponent. After landing a stomp to temporarily ward off Kane, Orton stepped back onto the table but ended up falling into one of the holes that once held the monitors causing the table to flip forward and sent Orton crashing to the ground. Seconds later the WWE veteran was back on his feet and awkwardly laughed the moment off.
14. Poetry Not So In Motion
The Hardy Boyz were one of the most popular tag teams throughout their time in the WWF/WWE. Some of the greatest TLC and ladder matches have featured the Hardys as their high-flying antics are a sight to behold. Unfortunately not all of their moves have worked out in their favor with this being one of them. After Funaki dodged the poetry in motion, Jeff Hardy went for some sort of aerial attack but his feet slipped out from under him causing him to tumble head over heels to ground below. It actually looked pretty cool but it wasn’t exactly what Hardy was going for. I can imagine Hardy was in a bit of pain after this but he finished the rest of the match unscathed. Credit to Taka Michinoku for selling the botch to the best of his ability.
13. Lesnar Delivers a Brutal F5 By Accident
There have been multiple moments in which Brock Lesnar has looked like a complete freak of nature in the WWE. Many of those moments include the beast performing his F5 to opponents much larger than him. The man known as A-Train at the time was one of those opponents and Lesnar had performed the move on him before but this one stands out from the rest of them. After hoisting A-Train onto his shoulders, Lesnar decided to gain a bit of momentum to help pull off his devastating finisher. To do this, Lesnar ran around in a circle before launching the 300 lb A-Train in the air. Normally Lesnar keeps his left arm elevated to avoid spiking his opponent in the process but this time around he forgot to do so. The result was A-Train getting dropped directly on his head in what looked to have been a very grim series of events. A-Train would be okay and Lesnar performed the move again which allowed the WWE to edit out the botch in the original broadcast of the 2003 episode of Smackdown.
12. Bret “The Hitman” Clark
The next addition on our list is the first promo related botch that stands out from the rest. Michael Buffer is one of the most well-known announcers in all of sports. His legendary line “Let’s Get Ready To Rumble” has become synonymous with him and will forever be associated with the sport of boxing. In 1998 Buffer decided to take his talents to the wrestling industry and would work with WCW in his first gig. While announcing a a number one contenders match for the United States Championship on an episode of Nitro, Buffer accidentally referred to Bret Hart as “Bret The Hitman Clark”. Well let Buffer slide on this one but he should stick to boxing and let Howard Finkle keep his role of greatest wrestling announcer of all time.
11. Kidman Somehow Almost Lands Outside The Ring
The shooting star press is one of the most spectacular moves in wrestling history. The degree of difficulty is what makes the high-risk maneuver so incredible and when executed properly its a beautiful piece of work. Billy Kidman was one of the many superstars to utilize the move but has received his fair share of criticism due to the nature in which he performs the aerial act. Throughout his career, Kidman would often times land knees first onto his opponents resulting in injuries that could have been avoided. One particular instance that comes to mind was when he concussed Chavo Guerrero while landing the SSP. Fortunately, Kidman did not injure Steven Reagal on this attempt but he did have some laughs pointed at him instead. There’s a reason why they’re called high-risk maneuvers.
10. Kevin Nash Reminds Us Why We Should Stay In School
No one expects professional wrestlers to be very smart. After all they’re getting paid mainly for their physical abilities and not their IQ levels but instances like this remind us that our education is important. In his very first appearance on WCW, Nash made a mistake that an elementary student could have pointed out. During the promo Nash states “This is where the big boys play. Look at the adjective. Play. We ain’t here to play”. I don’t think I need to point out whats wrong with this statement. Luckily this little slip up wouldn’t hurt Nash in the long run as he would become one of the most prominent figures in wrestling history.
9. Hulk Hogan Shows How Senile He Is
Wrestlemania XXX saw one of the greatest story lines in wrestling history come to an end. The Undertaker had his Wrestlemania streak of 21-0 snapped which shocked fans all across the country. The pay-per-view also had a special guest for the night with Hulk Hogan leading the way for the annual event. Fans rose to their feet and cheered the immortal one on as he made his way down the entrance ramp to kick off the festivities. Those cheers would quickly turn to boos once Hogan began speaking to the thousands in attendance. Hogan was pumping up the crowd and accidentally referred to the Mercedes-Benz Superdome as the Silverdome. The crowd instantly caught Hogans mistake and boos began to rain down as Hogan finished his sentence. He took a brief pause, corrected himself and then used the excuse that he was thinking of his body slam on Andre The Giant at Wrestlemania I. The best part about this whole thing is hearing Michael Cole, JBL and Jerry Lawler cracking up while Hulk realizes what he just said.
8. Batista Enters Suplex City On His Own
During an episode of Raw, Batista was getting ready to put away John Cena with his patented Batista Bomb until Mark Henry decided to screw things up for The Animal. Batista quickly noticed Henry climbing into the ring and turned his attention towards The Worlds Strongest Man. Henry was unfazed by the punch thrown by Batista and responded with a headbutt. Batista took the shot and reacted in the weirdest way possible. He took a couple steps back and acted as if Brock Lesnar was giving him a ticket to suplex city by doing some bizarre back flip. Batista has had his fair share of botches in the ring but this one might be his most popular.
7. Don West And Mike Tenay Do Their Best Acting Job
There have been a few moments in wrestling in which the ring side announcers have been caught on camera reading from a script during their broadcast. This one definitely takes the cake though. For many years Don West and Mike Tenay were the voices of TNA wrestling. They had one particular moment during their time that still cracks me up to this day. A match between Abyss and Sting had found its way outside of the Impact Zone and viewers were waiting for the action to ramp up. For some reason the cameras cut to West and Tenay reading their dialogue without the two knowing. The two never look up once at the camera and the broadcast simply cuts back to Abyss as if nothing ever happened.
6. The Deadman Takes Flight And Crash Lands
It’s always impressive to see the larger superstars soar through the air as if they are a cruiserweight of some sort. The Undertaker is one of those superstars and his plancha is one of the most electrifying moves the business has ever seen. Taker took on Shawn Michaels at Wrestlemania XXV and used the move to try and weaken Michaels while Shawn recovered outside the ring. Michaels quickly pulled a nearby cameraman to take the hit. Unfortunately the cameraman failed to move forward and catch Taker resulting in him landing directly on his head. Fun fact, the cameraman was former WWE wrestler Deuce from Deuce ‘n Domino. That poor guy didn’t stand a chance when trying to catch ‘Taker out of mid air.
5. Khali Backs Up The Saying Of Brains Over Brawn
The Great Khali was the WWE World Heavyweight Champion at one point. Let that sink for a second. Hailing from the South Asian country of India, Khali was hated by a majority of the wrestling crowd due to his lack of mic skills and little to no ability to put on a halfway decent match. This is one of Khali’s moments that may have slipped the minds of fans in attendance at the time. Michael Cole noticed it though and quickly jumped all over it. Khali and Edge were the last two participants in an over-the-top-rope battle royal and for a moment Khali forgot the rules to the match. He simply walked over the top rope to get to Edge without realizing that he just eliminated himself from the battle royal. Apparently referee Mike Chioda didn’t realize this either and the action continue. The funny thing is Khali did it again.
4. Sid Has Half The Brain That You Do
Sid Vicious is known for putting on some of the greatest promos in wrestling history. He’s up there with the Ultimate Warrior and Randy Savage when it comes to hilarity. In this case Sid tries to put himself over but does the complete opposite instead. Kevin Nash, who is dressed up as Sid, and Scott Hall listen to Vicious cut his promo when he states “But you know and I know that you are only half the man that I am. And I have half the brain that you do!” Nash and Hall start dying of laughter in the ring and can you blame them? This is still one of the most hilarious moments in wrestling history. This just sums up WCW circa 2000 perfectly.
3. Papa Shango Misses His Cue
Wrestlemania VIII saw Hulk Hogan versus Sid as the main event for the evening. The match went without a hitch until the finish, which was probably the worst time for a mistake to happen. Papa Shango was supposed to run in after Hogan landed his leg drop on Sid but was late in doing so. Sid was forced to kick out of Hogan’s pin attempt and the rest was history. Shango runs in during the commotion, the beat down commences, the Ultimate Warrior then joins them in the ring for an ending that actually didn’t turn out to be so bad. Still though, this was a botch that had the worst timing possible, being in the main event of WrestleMania.
2. Lesnar Shooting Star Press
If the word botch was in the dictionary, this would be the photo for it. Remember when I said that heavyweights trying to pull of moves that are normally fit for cruiserweights is rather impressive? Here’s another example of it. Keep in mind Lesnar has nailed this move to perfection in previous matches but not so much in his match with Kurt Angle at Wrestlemania XIX. Perhaps it was the slight hesitation before the takeoff or the fact that Angle was more than halfway across the ring but in the end Lesnar ended up landing on his head and hasn’t attempted the move since. Can’t really blame him though. Lesnar learned his lesson from this and stopped using the move after this terrible outcome.
1. The Shockmaster Shocks The World
From the horribly bedazzled Stormtrooper helmet to the tiny pyros that wouldn’t scare a child, this promo will forever be remembered as one of the greatest mistakes in the world of sports entertainment. There really isn’t much to say with this one. It could not have gone any worse and there was nothing that WCW could do to salvage this already sinking ship of a promo. The terrible voice over for the Shockmaster is just the icing on the cake for this disaster. At least Sid didn’t just walk away or start laughing cause any man in his position probably would have. Needless to say the character was doomed from that point on and The Shockmaster gimmick basically became a joke after this debacle.
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