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#FinisherFriday (12/30/16): Grand Amplitude



All hail American Alpha, our brand new SmackDown Tag Team Champions! The two blue-chippers' shocking victory over the Wyatt Family—with a clean pinfall over 12-time World Champion Randy Orton, no less!—marked one of the more scintillating upsets of the year, not just for the unexpectedness of the win, but by how clean it ended.

American Alpha Win WWE Tag Team Titles (WWE SmackDown LIVE, 27th December 2016) 1080p

It takes a lot to take out a future Hall of Famer like Orton for the three-count, and fortunately, for this one evening, Jason Jordan and Chad Gable had the right weapon to steal the gold: their jaw-dropping tag team finisher known as Grand Amplitude.

What is Grand Amplitude? 


At its core, the move is an alley-oop bridging back suplex, which involves the 245-pound Jordan first tying up the intended victim in an arm-trap belly-to-back suplex position. With an explosive pop of his hips (and take note, Jordan can squat over 400 pounds in real life), he tosses the opponent into the air, where a leaping Gable snatches him at his peak, and dive-bombs him back-first into the mat in back suplex landing position, before neck-bridging into a cover.


Splat. Pin. Win.

But why is it called "Grand Amplitude," a name which sounds pretty cool, but doesn't have the same pizzazz to it as, say, "Doomsday Device" or "Shatter Machine?"

The name is actually derived from a term used in amateur wrestling to describe any throw so skillful and powerful, it takes an opponent from his feet onto his back, with his feet sweeping in an arc over his head. Sounds like it fits what Gable and Jordan do to a tee.

It's a technique so brutal, it scores five points in amateur wrestling, and is frequently enough to call an end to a round via technical superiority.

So there you have it—Grand Amplitude is a finisher so bad-ass, it ends a fight both in real and fake wrestling.



The Physics of Grand Amplitude 


But how much does the move really hurt? We've done the math to figure it out.

When the 6'3" Jordan tosses the opponent up into the air just right and with the right extension, he actually sends him up to a point nearly seven feet above the ground. That's the equivalent of falling back-first from a standard doorway, or roughly the same as taking a Last Ride from the Undertaker.

Alone, the victim would hit the ground at a little over 25 kilometers per hour. And assuming a body mass of 100 kilograms, he goes splat with approximately 2,700 joules of energy. That's over 1.5 times more force than taking a punch from Mike Tyson in his prime, who knocked out 44 men in the boxing ring with his feared punches estimated to land at an explosive 1,600 joules.

Nope. 
Add the mass of Gable to the equation, however, and the impact changes. While the velocity of the fall doesn't change, the splat energy nearly doubles—now you've got roughly the blunt trauma of three Mike Tyson knockout punches simultaneously exploding across an opponent's upper back and neck.

We don't know about you, but we're not exactly lining up to take a move like that. And it's no wonder even a ring legend like Randy Orton couldn't kick out of it.


*****

So there you have it. Grand Amplitude isn't just one of the better, more graceful tag team finishers in pro wrestling history, it also mathematically sucks to take.

Are there any tag finishers you like better than Gable and Jordan's? Let us know, and perhaps we'll even cover it in a future edition of this column.

*****

Mark De Joya (@MDJSuperstar) is a brand strategist by day, but dreams of being the Vince McMahon of the Philippines by night. With 18" arms and a 385-pound raw deadlift, he is also the official bouncer of the Smark Henry offices.

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