Countering the Mandible Claw


Longtime reader, second time emailer… since
the mandible claw

has come back recently with Bray Wyatt and Britt Baker, I was wondering your take on why opponents don't just bite down when someone applies it. I get why it wouldn't have worked on any of Mick Foley's personas, because his character was crazy and masochistic, but is the general idea that because it's a nerve hold, it would essentially prevent someone from doing that?

You got it!  The move actually has a fascinating history, since it was originally used by Dr. Sam Shepard, the real life dentist who was the real life inspiration for The Fugitive!  He worked as a wrestler for a while in the 60s as a special attraction and developed the hold.  And yeah, the hold paralyzes the jaw through complex nerve manipulation that only dentists study in evil dental school and presumably leaves you in such pain that you can’t kick out.