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The Boston crab is a professional wrestling hold that typically starts with one wrestler lying in a supine position on the mat, with the other wrestler standing and facing him. It is a type of spinal lock where the wrestler hooks each of the opponent’s legs in one of his arms, and then turns the opponent face-down, stepping over him in the process. The final position has the wrestler in a semi-sitting position and facing away from his opponent, with the opponent’s back and legs bent back toward his head.
The original name for the maneuver was the Backbreaker, before that term became known for its current usage. In modern wrestling, the Boston crab is not treated as a lethal submission maneuver, even though it was considered a match-ending hold in the past. In Japan, it is commonly used as a hold to defeat young and inexperienced wrestlers; the ability to overcome the hold is considered a sign of growth.
In submission grappling, the Boston crab (generally the half Boston crab) can be used to set up a straight ankle lock.
Somewhat similar to the cross-legged Boston Crab, this move sees the attacking wrestler cross both of his opponent's legs before stepping over so that his opponent stays flat on his back, while the attacker twists the defender's body. Innovated by Braeden Bacon and used mainly in his early DWA career.
Similar to a normal Boston crab, this move sees the attacking wrestler use a single knee to add additional pressure by pressing it into the opponent's back. Roderick Strong uses this as the Strong Hold. An elevated variation, best known as Chris Jericho's Liontamer, also exists.
This variation of a normal Boston crab sees the attacking wrestler get a hold of both of the opponent's feet, then crossing both legs over before tucking both legs under its same armpit (i.e. left leg under wrestler’s left armpit). After completing this, the attacking wrestler turns the opponent face-down, stepping over him/her in the process to secure the hold.
Similar to a normal Boston Crab, this move sees the attacking wrestler stand farther back. The step-back allows additional pressure to be placed on the opponent's back from the higher angle, hence the name. This move is best known as Chris Jericho's Walls of Jericho.
The wrestler grabs the legs of an opponent lying supine while standing over his opponent, steps in front of his opponent's arms, and either remains standing or falls backwards, stretching the legs back. A single leg variation, also known as a Stump Puller, involves only one of the opponent's legs being stretched and a figure-four leglock variation as well. This move can be used as a pin as well as a submission maneuver.
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