#21: Shoulder Neckbreaker

Posted: December 25, 2010 in Neckbreakers
Tags: , , , , , ,

Most neckbreaker variations sees the opponent’s neck driven into the canvas, but the Shoulder Neckbreaker doubles the pain. Instead of the opponent falling to the canvas, they instead get their neck/head driven off the wrestler’s shoulder.

The move is commonly known as a Hangman’s Neckbreaker, but this is not the actual definition. A Hangman’s Neckbreaker is essentially the same set up of an Shoulder Neckbreaker, but sees the wrestler lie outwards and the opponent fall to the canvas. Although this style of move is popular, the Shoulder Neckbreaker is also. WWE Diva Layla uses it as her current finishing move, but it is Zack Ryder who probably performs the best looking variation in the business today.

To set the move up, the wrestler will usually be facing an opponent, or the back of the opponent. If the wrestler is facing the opponent, the opponent will usually be kicked in the stomach before being wrapped in a facelock. The wrestler will then slowly spin the opponent over so that they are back-to-back, but still with the inverted facelock applied.

If the wrestler is facing the opponent’s back, the wrestler will however ensure they are then back-to-back with the opponent and will reach back for the facelock.

Now in this position, the wrestler will do one of three different things. In order for the opponent’s head to connect with the wrestler’s shoulder, the wrestler will need to sit down sharply, kneel down quickly or even connect a split-legged position. This trio of possibilities will jolt the opponent’s body downwards, driving their head into the shoulder. After this has connected, the opponent will then usually fall away to the canvas.


  • Also known as: Hangman’s Neckbreaker/ Kneeling Neckbreaker/ Sitout Neckbreaker/ Split-legged Neckbreaker/ Layout
  • Famous users: Zack Ryder, Layla, Jay Lethal, Melina, Hawk, Matt Striker, Primo
  • Finished off: Tiffany, Melina, Kelly Kelly
  • H&B Rating: 5


Watch more variations:

Layla’s Layout– Layla’s variation is slightly different in that instead of grabbing the opponent in a facelock before the move, she grabs their hair to spin them around, before sitting out.
Primo’s Shoulder Neckbreaker– A similar variation to the video in the post, except Primo is back-to-back with Yoshi Tatsu, allowing him to quickly grab the head and pull off a quick Shoulder Neckbreaker.
Matt Striker’s Kneeling Shoulder Neckbreaker– Instead of the wrestler sitting out, they kneel abruptly, driving the opponent’s neck into the shoulder.
Melina’s Split-legged Shoulder Neckbreaker– A nice, if not painful, variation of the shoulder neckbreaker, where the wrestler drops to a split-legged position quickly, driving the opponent’s neck into the shoulder.


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