In professional wrestling
is any move in which the wrestler falls down or backwards to drive a held opponent's head into the mat. The classic DDT is performed by putting the opponent in a front facelock
and falling backwards so that the opponent is forced to dive forward onto his or her head. The DDT is often prefaced with a kick to the stomach in order to drive the head of the opponent downwards; a kick and a DDT in quick succession is referred to as a Flowing DDT
The move was named by Jake "The Snake" Roberts, who accidentally invented the move in the 1980s. Rumors abound as to what the letters DDT supposedly stood for, including Drop Dead Twice, Demonic Death Trap, Death Drop Technique and Damien's Dinner Time after Jake's pet python Damien. When asked what DDT meant, Jake once famously replied "The End." The abbreviation itself originally came from the chemical dichloro-diphenyl-trichloroethane, a notorious pesticide, as stated during shoot interviews and on his Pick Your Poison DVD. Many think the term DDT was appropriated because the chemical DDT is something "bad" that is buried in the ground and causes extreme danger (and possible brain damage/birth defects) when there; similarly, a DDT is bad in that it buries an opponent's head into the mat, creating kayfabe extreme danger to the brain and spinal cord.
Front facelock variants
The wrestler lifts the opponent onto his shoulders as in a Argentine backbreaker rack
, pushes the opponent's legs while still holding the front facelock, flipping them over to the front of the wrestler. The wrestler falls down to the mat back first, driving the opponent face first down to the mat.
This is where the opponent has their back in the corner and the wrestler jumps to the second rope on the inside of the ring, hooks the for the DDT and falls back. The move was originated in the opening match of the first Superbrawl
, when Brad Armstrong, under a mask as "Fantasia" executed it on both of the Young Pistols
See: Jumping brainbuster
See: Cradle brainbuster
Double underhook DDT
Instead of applying a head or face lock, the wrestler bends his opponent forward and hooks each arm behind the opponent's back, tucks the opponent's head under one of his arms, and then falls back to pull the opponent down either flat on his face, which is the more common variant, or onto the top of their head, causing them to roll over, like in a regular DDT. It is also known as a double arm DDT
or a butterfly DDT
. The faceplant variant is technically known as an implant double underhook DDT
. This move is used by Mick Foley
, usually to set his opponent up for the mandible claw
. It is also used by Stevie Richards
and also for Ricky Landell
, who calls it the Stevie-T
This version of a DDT first sees an attacking wrestler place the opponent on an elevated surface, usually the ropes/turnbuckle, while applying a front facelock. The attacking wrestler next draws the opponent away from the elevated surface leaving the opponent's feet over the elevated surface (i.e. ring ropes), making them the only thing other than the wrestler keeping the opponent off the ground. The attacking wrestler then falls backwards so that the opponent is forced to dive forward onto his/her head with extra force due to the height of which they were dropped.
This can also be performed as a double team move.
Also known as a front flip DDT
. After applying a front facelock
, the attacking wrestler pushes off the mat with his/her legs to flip the opponent and drive them onto the top of their head in a manner similar to the flip piledriver
. This move was innovated by AKIRA
Also known as a Samurai Driver
this DDT sees a wrestler place his/her head between the thighs of an opponent before jumping up while pushing away from the opponent's thighs to flip up and sit on the shoulders of the opponent. The wrestler then spreads their legs, dropping off the opponent's shoulders as they grab hold of the opponent's head in a front facelock to fall down to the mat back first, driving the opponent's head down to the mat. This move sees the attacking wrestler get lifted up in a powerbomb
position so often this move is used as a counter to a powerbomb.
used this move as a finisher in his WWE
This DDT, which was innovated by The Rock
, sees the wrestler stand in front of his opponent facing at him, duck, hook one of his arms over the opponent's shoulder (if it's the opponent's left shoulder that the attacker chooses to seize, he hooks with his right, or opposite if sides are reversed), swing himself under the opponent's armpit then around and over the opponent's back so that he faces the same way as the opponent, lock the opponent's head under his other hand's armpit, spin another 180°
to end up having the opponent locked in a front facelock
and fall back to drive the opponent skull first to the mat, as in a regular DDT.
The maneuver is usually performed after the attacker ducks a punch or a clothesline.
Fireman's carry DDT
Also described as a fireman's carry implant DDT
, this move sees the attacking wrestler first put an opponent up in the fireman's carry
(across the wrestler's shoulders) position, then throw the opponent's legs out in front of him/her to spin them out while the attacking wrestler switches the position of his/her arm that's holding the opponent's head to a front facelock
and falls backwards to drive the top of the opponent's head in to the mat.
After applying a front facelock
, the wrestler hooks the opponent's near leg with his other arm, lifts them up into a vertical position, and falls backwards on to his back, driving the opponent's head down to the mat. This move is also known as a Leg hook DDT
Implant DDT refers to variations of the DDT where the opponent is driven to the mat face first, as in a faceplant, and not on to their heads. The most common variation is the Lifting DDT
A common variation of the Double underhook DDT is the implant variation.
Another variation of the implant DDT sees the wrestler place their opponent in a headlock, but instead of falling backwards they leap backwards onto their back, pulling the opponent with them face first to the mat.
A slight variation where instead of just falling backwards, the wrestler jumps up while holding the front facelock, so that they are horizontal, and then uses the weight and momentum to pull the opponent down on their head. Mickie James
uses this as her finisher, which she calls the Mickie-DT
. Also, a variation of this move is sometimes seen where, as the wrestler jumps, they use the horizontal position to execute a Front Dropkick
to the knees of the opponent to add additional impact to the move.
In these versions of a DDT the wrestler applies a front facelock and then performs a type of legsweep
to essentially take out the legs from under the opponent before falling backwards to drive the opponent face first down to the mat.
Paul London used a variation of this in Ring of Honor where he hooked one of his legs around the opponent's, in a manner similar to that of a reverse STO, before sweeping their leg as he fell backwards to deliver extra force.
CM Punk used a version he called the Devil Lock DDT where he first puts the opponent in a hammerlock before sweeping out their legs. Consequences Creed also uses this version and calls it the Creed-DT.
This version of a DDT is similar to a spike DDT
and is often referred to as a Low angle brainbuster
, or simply as an implant DDT
. The attacking wrestler applies a front facelock to an opponent then lifts the opponent off the ground just before falling backwards to drive the opponent face or head first down to the mat. A common name for the move is the Impaler
, as named by one of the move's users, Gangrel
currently uses the move as a finisher and has called it many names over the years, including the Edgecution
and (recently) the Buzzkiller
A slight variation of this, sees the wrestler spin the opponent's body away from themselves as they raise the opponent off the ground. Another version, the lifting reverse DDT, sees the wrestler apply an inverted face lock, lift the opponent off the ground and fall back. This version was used by D-Von Dudley who called it the Saving Grace in the WWE.
Over the shoulder swinging DDT
Innovated by Johnny "The Bull" Stamboli
, the attacking wrestler puts the opponent over the shoulder as in a powerslam
set up but instead throws them off and around their body grabbing their head and executing a modified DDT
or a modified facebuster
. Stamboli also innovated a variation in where he military presses
an opponent before putting him on his shoulder.
Innovated by Shinya Hashimoto, the wrestler charges at a bent-forward opponent and applies a front facelock
before dropping backwards to drive the opponent down to the mat head first. This move has been popularized in America by the Undertaker.
In another variation the wrestler will also push the opponent up with his free arm, hitting a spike DDT version of the move.
This move, innovated and dubbed the Desecrator
, sees the wrestler apply the front facelock
and then puts one of their legs on one of the opponent's arms before falling backward and driving the opponent head first to the mat. It is sometimes wrongly
referred to as a scissored single arm DDT
. An inverted variation
is also possible.
See Facebreaker DDT
The wrestler applies a front facelock
to their opponent. The wrestler then jumps down onto their back, swinging their legs forward, bending the opponent, and driving them down to the mat face, forehead, or head first.
Tiger Mask and Lita used a swinging variation where the attacker draws one of their legs backwards (usually the leg closest to the opponent) before swinging it forward to build extra momentum. They then drop onto their back, driving the opponent head first to the mat. This variation is known as a Swinging Snap DDT. Tommy Dreamer uses a version were he keeps them vertical when they hit the mat so they are on top of their head. He calls it the Dreamer DDT.
Maryse uses a variation where she does her signature hair-flip to add extra momentum, before swinging her legs forward and jumping onto her back, driving her opponents head first onto the mat.
Another version is when the wrestler kicks the opponent in the gut as in a flowing DDT and hits the snap DDT. This flowing version is popularly used by Raven, who dubbed it the Raven Effect or the Even Flow DDT and was also used by Crash Holly and The Rock.
The wrestler applies a front facelock
to his opponent and lifts them up with his free arm. He then falls backwards, driving the opponent vertically down to the mat head first. The Spike DDT is a version of the DDT which is somewhere between a lifting DDT
and a brainbuster
Another version of the Spike DDT, known as a Diving DDT or a Halo DDT, exists in which the wrestler dives off of the top rope, catches the opponent in the front facelock and hits the DDT. This version is most notably used by Ace Steel, who calls it the Steel Spike, and by Maven.
The tornado DDT is also referred to as a Swinging DDT
/ Spinning DDT
. A wrestler applies a front facelock
to an opponent from an elevated position (for example, sitting on the top turnbuckle against an opponent standing on the mat, or from the apron against an opponent standing on the ground). The wrestler then jumps forward and swings around to fall backwards and drop the opponent's head into the mat. Shoichi Funaki
referred to it as the Rising Sun
There are variations to this move which are all commonly known as a Tornado DDT. One version sees the wrestler apply the front facelock while on the same level as the opponent and then run up the ring ropes (or even another opponent) to springboard round and deliver the DDT.
In grounded versions a wrestler charges at a standing opponent, jumps up and applies the front facelock in mid air before swinging his/herself round and falling backwards down to the mat to deliver the DDT. This is sometimes known as a Jumping swinging DDT and is regularly used by wrestlers that use a standard Tornado DDT. Mickie James is best known for using this variation, calling it the Mickie-DT.
Inverted facelock variants
This subsection lists DDTs that involve the opponent being dropped on the back of their heads. The basic Reverse DDT
is also known as an Inverted DDT
Standing behind his / her opponent with the opponent in front of him / her, the wrestler bends his / her back and applies an inverted facelock
, then falls backwards to slam the opponent's head into the mat. Also known as a Reverse DDT
. Most famous for using this move in the U.S. is Sting
who called it the Scorpion Death Drop
. Another variation used can be done when the wrestler falls on his / her stomach instead of their back, which is known as a falling inverted / falling reverse DDT
Lifting inverted DDT
Sometimes referred to as an inverted suplex
. The wrestler applies an inverted facelock
on the opponent with one arm, and lifts the opponent up with the other. The wrestler then falls backwards down onto their back, slightly to their side, driving the opponent down to the mat upper back and head first. Another variation used can be done where the wrestler falls on their stomach instead of their back, which is known as a lifting falling inverted / lifting falling reverse DDT
Reverse tornado DDT
The wrestler applies an inverted facelock
from an elevated position (for example, sitting on the top turnbuckle against an opponent standing on the mat, or from the apron against an opponent standing on the ground). He/she then jumps off so that he/she swings around the opponent. Using the momentum from the jump, he/she falls forwards and slams the back of the opponent's head into the mat.It could also be done when the wrestler is standing on the mat instead of an elevated position.
This is a backflip three-quarter facelock reverse DDT
, which is a variation of the Shiranui
. In this move a wrestler applies a three-quarter facelock
on the opponent and performs a backflip over the opponent while maintaining the facelock turning it into an inverted facelock
and then either landing face down to the mat, on their own back to the side, or in a sitting position, to drive the opponent's head back-first down to the mat. Último Dragón
innovated this move, which he referred to as the Asai DDT
Swinging reverse DDT
This variation sees a wrestler lock in a front facelock
and, while falling backwards, twist their opponent around resulting in the opponent landing on the back of their head, as in a normal reverse DDT.
A slight variation of this, used by The Miz, who called it the Mizard of Oz, sees the wrestler reach under the opponent while setting up the move to grab their far arm. From there, the wrestler pull the arm over, causing the opponent to twist around until they are in an inverted facelock before then dropping backwards for a standard Inverted DDT.
Other variations of the DDT
Single arm DDT
See Armbar Takedown
This is where the wrestler reaches across the opponent's torso with one hand and grabs the thighs with the other, the wrestler lifts the opponent up horizontal to the mat and falls back like a lifting DDT
. The move is known by the names T-Bone DDT
and the T-Bone Driller