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#FinisherFriday (8/24/18): Say Yes to the Yes Lock


"You're gonna get your f***ing head kicked in!"

Welcome to another edition of #FinisherFriday chaps. This is Wreddit_Regal giving an analysis of the finisher of arguably the most beloved wrestler in the world today. And if the opening sentence (and picture) wasn't enough of a clue (that was actually what the crowd would say to his opponent during the good ol' ROH days), the wrestler we are talking about is none other than Daniel Bryan.

Creator of the YES! Movement, this wrestler has been the epitome of the fighting underdog who gets successful in the end. Although having his in-ring career almost cut short by his cervical spine injury, he has since made a comeback once again enamoring us with his charisma, ring psychology, brutal kicks, and his signature finisher, the Yes Lock.

Originally called the LeBell lock (after its innovator, Gene LeBell), the Yes Lock is technically a combination of two separate submission holds. This is the simple breakdown:
  1. DB forces opponent into a prone position (exposing the back)
  2. DB immobilizes the opponent's left arm by a) simply tucking it between his thighs, or b) performing a partial omoplata
  3. DB locks both of his arms in front of the opponent's face and proceeds to lean backwards


Dissecting the damage dealt:

1. The Omoplata is a devastating shoulder/elbow lock in itself. Correctly applied, all DB needs to do is to flap his right thigh to the left and the elbow is dislocated. Bend the right knee, place it on the left shoulder and put all of his body weight on it, and the shoulder capsule is destroyed. Suddenly lean forward, and all the shoulder muscles are pulled forcibly, straining them greatly and adding the possibility of muscle tears in the rotator cuff.

(Warning: this video is brutal.)

2. The face is one of the most vulnerable spots in the human body with regards to combat. You can't train your nose into getting tougher. You can't train your eyes against eye gouges. You can't build a resistance against some knuckles locked together and dragging the top half of your face along with it. The knuckles itself shears the skin of the face, dealing considerable pain in the process (in case you were wondering, the skin contains more nerve endings than the underlying tissue, which explains why a burn hurts more than a deep cut).


3. Bending the neck and upper body backwards makes breathing harder, and may cause a wrestler to pass out due to a low oxygen supply, should he/she not succumb to the intense amount of pain dealt (unless the opponent is proficient in yoga).


4. And here comes the "secret" part: since the left arm/shoulder is in the omoplata position, the only thing the opponent can do to relieve the pressure in the elbow and shoulder is to tilt his/her neck and whole body to the direction of the pulling/twisting force. This in itself automatically sets the opponent for a sideways neck crank (neck turned to the side + backwards pulling motion = ouch on another level)

And there you have it chaps, the LeBell lock deconstructed. With the current status of Daniel Bryan on Smackdown Live, what you think lies ahead on his future, and of his current rivalry with the Miz? Let us know in the comment section below!

Header photo from WWE
*****
Wreddit_Regal is the resident sports kinesiologist of Reddit's wrestling forum, r/squaredcircle. From the most basic of punches to the most intricate double-team maneuvers, he can explain them within the realm of human anatomy and physics, because when doing absolutely nothing wrestling-related, he also happens to work as an operating room nurse.

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