Wikipedia:WikiProject Professional wrestling/Style guide

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PW Style Guide
Below is a style guide to creating professional wrestling articles established by consensus among participants of WikiProject Professional wrestling. Please discuss this guide on the WikiProject talk page if you have any ideas about how to fine tune these guidelines.


  • The phrase "the late" should be removed before the names of now deceased wrestlers.



  • In referencing both the show and brand, WWE's Monday night program is to be written Raw, with only an initial capital letter.
  • CamelCases are optional on Wikipedia, but in the interest of uniformity, WWE's Friday night program is SmackDown, with a capital S and capital D. Post-January 2008 SmackDown references should be written without an exclamation point.
  • Likewise, TNA's Thursday night program is written Impact Wrestling or Impact for short, with only an initial capital letter.



  • Limit heading titles to five words or less (not counting dates).
  • Try and limit headings by promotion, although some alternatives are acceptable. If the text for one promotion is getting long, it can be broken up with further subheadings. Use common sense.
  • Do not refer to the subject of the article within the article's headers.
  • Headers should never be wiki-linked.
  • Capitalize the first letter of the first word and any proper nouns in headings, but leave the rest in lower case.



  • Italics are only to be used when referencing a show such as in these scenarios:
    • "The January 21 episode of Raw"
    • "The week before on SmackDown"
  • Taglines are to be written with italics and in quotation marks.
  • Album titles are to be written with italics and song titles with quotation marks.
  • Pay-per-view events are to be written with no italics.


Warning notes to editors may be included in sections that are subject to constant, unnecessary or unencyclopedic change. Remember, Wikipedia is an encyclopedia, not a dedicated professional wrestling site.

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Professional wrestler biographies[edit]

This is the formatting used when creating or editing a professional wrestler article:

First add a lead paragraph about the wrestler, then add their professional wrestling profile using the {{Infobox Wrestler}} template. Add metric conversions for all wrestler heights and weights, including new entries. Make sure feet and inches are represented as "ft" and "in" and pounds are listed as "lb". Note that SI weight should be rounded to the nearest kilogram and height should be rounded to the nearest centimeter.

Professional wrestling career[edit]

Summarize the career of the wrestler, but make sure you leave it to major events and key points. Try not to include week-by-week synopsis of what that wrestler did on whatever show they're on.

In wrestling[edit]

  • Finishing moves
*[[Finishing move without a special name]]
*''Finishing move with a special name'' ([[Regular name for move]])
  • Signature moves
*[[Signature move without a special name]]
*''Signature move with a special name'' ([[Regular name for move]])

If a wrestler uses multiple kinds of the same move commonly (suplex, powerbomb, etc.) it may help to list them like this:

Finishers should be listed alphabetically first, regardless of frequency of use or time of use, then regular moves in the same manner, per MoS. Bolding should no longer be used to differentiate between finishing and signature moves (per MOS:BOLD), as the two are now listed separately.

"In wrestling" should be limited to Finishing moves, Signature moves, Nicknames, Theme music, and Managers (and/or Wrestlers managed). Any taunts, gestures, or other descriptions are better suited for the article prose. Furthermore, these items should only be listed when a reliable source is present. Template:Cite episode should not be used for citing moves as commentators often call moves wrong or do not give full technical names, leading to speculation.

Track names in Theme Music should not be Wikilinked to articles about the compilation albums on which they are sold, unless the article contains further information on the track itself (not just name, number and wrestler who used it).

Then add the following categories: [[Category:(Insert nationality here, American, Canadian, etc.) professional wrestlers]], [[Category:(Insert birth year) births]] and [[Category:Living people]] if the wrestler is still alive. If the article becomes long and the profile section interrupts the flow of the text, you may want to convert the profile section to use {{Infobox Wrestler}}. Remove commas to lists in statsboxes, to ring names and trainers, unless the name or gimmick takes up more than one line. But remember to keep the line changes. So "Name 1,<br />Name 2" becomes "Name 1<br />Name 2"

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

Championships and accomplishments are to be followed like in this example:

Please note that:

  1. The name of the promotion is in bold.
  2. The part proceeding the championship/accomplishment name (i.e. 2 times, 4 time, 2005, 2006) are linking to the list of champions for that accomplishment.
  3. Promotions are to be listed alphabetically, with titles won in each promotion alphabetically per WP:MoS
  4. Accomplishments (like King of the Ring and Royal Rumble) come after Championship title belts (like the WWE Championship and the World Tag Team Championship).
  5. If an accomplishment (like the Royal Rumble or King of the Ring) is accomplished twice, that it is listed in chronological order (see example above).
  6. With regards to the PWI 500 awards, only the wrestler's highest ranking is noted.
  7. Other notes (such as oldest, youngest, first, last, only, etc.) are only listed in the relevant prose section, and are not listed in the championship and accomplishments section.

Wrestling concepts articles[edit]

  • Change "attacker" to "wrestler" and "victim" to "opponent" in move articles.

List of Champions articles[edit]

When writing tables for a list of champions, they should appear as this:

  • Note: Successful defenses is included if the promotion keeps track of them.
No. Champion(s) Reign Date Days
Location Event Successful defenses Notes
1 Shiro Koshinaka 1 February 6, 1986 102 Tokyo, Japan Live event 1 Koshinaka defeated The Cobra in a tournament final to become the first champion.
2 Nobuhiko Takada 1 May 19, 1986 123 Tokyo, Japan Live event 6
3 Shiro Koshinaka 2 September 19, 1986 335 Fukuoka, Japan Live event 2

What to include in the notes section for each reign:

  • If the new champion defeated someone other than the old champion.
  • If the new champion received the title outside the match.
  • Match types that weren't straight one-on-one.
  • When the title was vacated.

What NOT to include in the notes section for each reign:

  • What move they used to win.
  • Who interfered.
  • Title defenses, unless it relates to how the title was vacated.

PPV Guidelines[edit]


Manual of Style (MoS)[edit]

When working with pay-per-view articles, you should use the following headings for the main body of the article:

===Preliminary matches===
===Main event matches===
==See also==
==External links==

The article should not be written in-universe, which is outlined in the Manual of Style on written fiction, it should be written so that everyone can understand the article, not just professional wrestling fans. If you feel you are writing in-universe, please do ask at the project talkpage whether anyone would like to perform a copy-edit. If you are actively working on a pay-per-view article, please insert a {{underconstruction}} tag at the top of the article. This helps reduce edit conflicts. All pay-per-view articles, should be written in past tense, excluding future events. The following guidelines should be followed in order for an article to be classified as a B-Class article, in order to be nominated and passed as a Good Article nomination, and/or as a Featured article candidate.

What each section should contain[edit]


The lead of the article should contain brief details of the event. The lead overall should be three paragraphs; for instance, the first paragraph should contain the promotion that produced the event, the date of the event, and the location and venue of the event. It should also contain information of who starred in the event. The second paragraph should explain how many matches were scheduled on the event's card. It should also contain an overview of the event, elaborating the main event(s) and most hyped matches on the undercard. Do not list the process of scoring in this paragraph, only state the outcome of the match and in the type of match it was contested in. Generally, the lead can be written in an in-universe perspective since many of the statements in the lead are explain in an out of universe perspective in the main body prose. The final paragraph should contain a brief overview of the reception of the event; the reception given by generally reliable critics and a reception of the DVD, VHS, and/or Blu-ray Disc. The {{Infobox Wrestling event}} template should go at the top of the article and each field should be filled out accordingly.


The production section comprises of two sub-sections, background and storylines. If one of the sub-sections is not present, then the name of the present sub-section will take precedence as the section name over production.

The background section should contain ...

The storylines section should contain details on at least three rivalries leading into a pay-per-view. When expanding this section, avoid using wrestling jargon. Generally, the first paragraph contains a brief overview of the way professional wrestling functions. This paragraph should explain that professional wrestling involves scripted plots and storylines. In addition, it should be stated that rivalries cast the wrestlers as a face or a heel. Optionally, it can be stated that the scripted events took place on certain television programs of the promotion. If the pay-per-view article is about a promotion that features a brand extension, the prose should state that is a storyline division of the company in which employees are assigned to a specific program, called a brand.

When beginning a sentence to describe a rivalry, the word feud should be avoided, unless an explanation of the term is given, which is staged (or scripted) rivalry. Alternately, words such as narrative and plot can be used to provide variance in the writing. The background should only summarize important events that enhanced the rivalry, such as important segments or matches that took place on television shows or pay-per-view events. Since professional wresting is a work of recorded media, Wikipedia's plot guideline should be adhered to, which states that Wikipedia treats fiction in an encyclopedic manner, discussing the reception, impact, and significance of notable works. A concise plot summary is appropriate as part of the larger coverage of a fictional work. As a result, do not write in-depth when describing a rivalry. Do not write weekly results of the rivalry, only elaborate the most important events that took place during the production time of the pay-per-view, which is generally the time between the previous pay-per-view and the weeks leading to the event which is being expanded. If the rivalry extends from a long period of time, briefly summarize how it began. Important events during a week or a show, such as in-ring segments or matches, should be briefly summarized.

In this section, the wrestler's ring name and birth name in a Wrestler A stage name([[Wrestler A birth/legal name]]) format should be used. The wrestler's birth name should only be mentioned and linked the first time it appears. Unless the wrestler is commonly known by his ring name, which means that they gained prominence under that name, it is unnecessary to list their birth/legal name. If elaborations of matches, gimmicks, or wrestling concepts are explained in this section, they should not be linked or explained at any later point in the article, as that is repetitive and does not adhere to the overlinking guideline of Wikipedia. To avoid wrestling jargon, professional wrestling moves should be explained in a brief and neutral point of view. Writing the name of the wrestling move and then the explanation of how the move is performed should be avoided because it produces grammatical errors in the prose. For example, if the term "chokeslam" is being used, it should not be written in the following format...

The Undertaker then performed a chokeslam, a move where The Undertaker grabs the opponent by the throat, lifts them up, and then slams them down to the mat, on Kane.

Note the length of the sentence and grammatical errors produced by the use of excessive commas. The same term can be explained and pipelinked in the following format...

The Undertaker performed a Chokeslam on Henry, lifting him by the throat and slamming him down.

If the name of a move is a nickname for the actual term, such as the "Batista Bomb" for the sitout powerbomb, the nickname should be in quotation marks. For moves that are more technical than others, like the sitout powerbomb, a brief overview of the move should be explained to avoid a sentence of great length and grammatical errors. For example...

Batista then executed a "Batista Bomb", in which he lifted and sat Cena on his shoulders, and slammed him down to the mat.

In general, moves should not be described in the background section because this information would only be present if the editor is inserting week-by-week, play-by-play information into a prose on a rivalry. The exception is if the move was performed outside an official match. Submission holds, and how they are performed, do not have to be described such as throws and attacks because holds require steps that are explained in great length, as a result, it is best to simply wikilink them. Both submissions and pinfalls should be described as scoring conditions in a match, depending whether the match is a variant. Pinning variations, such as the roll-up, should be briefly outlined as to how they are performed. This section should contain details as to the match that wrestlers will compete in. The name of match type in which the wrestlers will fight in, a brief explanation as to details surrounding the match type and its objective, should be given. For example, if the term "ladder match" is used. The match type and its explanation should be written in a format that first introduces the transition to the match, the match type, and a brief explanation of the match type.

The following match was a ladder match, where the objective was to climb a ladder and retrieve an object suspended in the air by a cable.

If the match is in an enclosure based match, such as an Elimination Chamber, it should be written in the same format as above but giving a brief explanation of how the ring has been altered for the match.

The main event was an Elimination Chamber match, featuring wrestlers fighting in a ring surrounded by a steel structure of chain and girders, called the "Chamber". In this match, two wrestlers began the match while four others were locked in pods made of Acrylic glass; they were released at time intervals until all six competitors were inside the Chamber. Eliminations occurred through pinfalls and submissions.

If the match is a singles match, the jargon based name can be used as long as its later explain that it is a "standard wrestling match," which implies that it is a bout contested under regular wrestling standards. If the match is a tag team match, no explanation is necessary as it is a common term that does not require an explanation.


The event section should contain details of the pay-per-view itself. This section should contain an elaboration of every match that occurred during the event, including dark matches, or matches that were taped such as for WWE Heat, before the pay-per-view (if any). When writing this section, transitions should be used from paragraph to paragraph. For example, the first paragraph can begin with..

The first match was Samoa Joe versus John Cena in a Hell in a Cell match.

While the next match could begin with

The next (or The following) match was etc..

If the gimmick of the match is elaborated in the background section, there is no need to repeat the elaboration again here. In addition, if the name of the wrestler was written in the format mentioned above in the background section in that section, there is no need to link or write it in that format here, unless that name has not appeared anywhere else above in the article. Only the most important moments during a match that affected the outcome of it should be covered; play-by-play detailing should be avoided, which includes detailing back and forth wrestling. The guideline on describing moves, as outlined in the background section, should be applied here as well. If during a match, a controversial event takes place, such as an interference or a wrestler knocking down a referee, it needs to be noted that as a part of the storyline (or it was scripted) that the said wrestler or referee interfered or was knocked down, respectively.

Matches during the event should only be covered; relatively, backstage segments should not be covered unless they are considered notable. Certain examples of where backstage segments may be notable would be for instance at December to Dismember (2006), where Sabu was found injured backstage. This section should also be split into two subsections, one labeled Preliminary matches and the other labeled Main event matches. In the main level two header labeled Event, the pre-show (dark matches, pre-taped match, etc.) should be covered. In the first level three header, the preliminary matches should be covered, which are the matches that received low promotion by the company.. In the final level three header, the highly promoted matches should be covered; for instance, the most hyped preliminary matches should be in this section, as should the matches from the main event (which are generally the final two matches). The highly promoted preliminary matches are to be included in this section because the term main event refers to bouts that were mainly advertised by a company, and these matches were the only ones under the main events to receive high advertising.

When elaborating the ending of a match, a description of the process of how it ended and the scoring condition as to how a wrestler won the match, should be given, while adhering to the move description guideline outlined in the background section. For example..

After hitting him with a sledgehammer, Triple H covered Shawn Michaels for the pinfall.


Cena then performed the FU on Michaels, in which he lifted and threw Michaels off his shoulders down to the mat. This followed with Cena gaining a pinfall.

If the move was already describe earlier in the article, there is no need in elaborating how it is performed again.


The aftermath section should contain details of the "aftermath" of the rivalries outlined in the article. In this section, a brief overview of what occurred after the event should be elaborated. When elaborating the aftermath of a feud, only the important events that affected the feud afterwards should be explained in this section. The difference of writing this section and background is that this section should go in even less detail on the aftermath. Generally, the aftermath should be one paragraph, which states straightforward on what occurred after the event. If staged rivalries completely stopped, or whether they continued for several months afterwards, it needs to be elaborated in this section in the briefest way possible.

Aside from the aftermath of rivalries, a subsection should be included labeled Reception. In this section, a reception to the event should be included. This subsection should be at least one paragraph long. This section should include the attendance for the event, the ticket sales from the attendance, and the buyrate of the pay-per-view, if that information is available from reliable sources. Aside from economy, reception by a critic should also be included; an example of a critic is Canadian Online Explorer and their professional wrestling section SLAM! Sports - wrestling. In general, critics don't have to be from reliable sources, but they should be from sources that have a reputation for their reviews. Another example would be or (these are only reliable for criticism). After elaborating this information, a reception to the DVD, VHS, and/or Blu-ray Disc of the event should also be included. If the media is ranked by a major sales chart, for example on Billboard, that information should be included. Other DVD information that may be included is reviews from major critics like Rotten Tomatoes.


The results section should only list the results of each match, the order in which they occurred, the stipulation of the match, and the amount of time that each match took. other details of the match should be established in the event section. The results of the event should be written in a table, show below:

No. Results Stipulations Times
1 Kurt Angle defeated Kevin Nash, Jay Lethal, Samoa Joe, and Jeff Jarrett King of the Mountain match for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship 32:08


{| class="wikitable"

  • The No. column represents the order in which the matches took place. If the articles is about a future event, the order should be based on the order in which they were announced. Numbers in this column should be written in single integer form, unless the number involves two integers. If a dark match occurs at the event, it should be listed as "Dark"; this also applies to events which had a match taped for a different program, like WWE Heat, except it would be worded as Heat or Sunday Night Heat, depending in which time period the event took place.
  • The Results column should contain the result of the match and should be modeled after the following example: Wrestler A defeated Wrestler B. The only exception would be if the match ended in disqualification, which would result in having to add by disqualification to the end of the example above.
  • The Stipulations column is any other information relating to the match itself, such as the type of match, any championships being contested for, or a storyline stipulation in the match. The first word in each row under this column should be capitalized.
    • If the match is contested in a standard singles match, Singles match should be listed. Similarly, if the match is a standard tag team match, Tag team match should be used.
    • If a championship is contested in a match type, it should be listed as "Match type for the ___ Championship", e.g. Hell in a Cell match for the WWE Championship.
    • If the match is contested in a different match type, the stipulations column should list the match type, e.g. Steel cage match.
    • If there is a stipulation to a championship or non-championship match, it should also be listed, e.g. Singles match; had Cena lost he would have had to join The Nexus.
  • The Times column should contain the length of each match as provided by a reliable source. If the time is not available, it should be listed as Unknown.

Note: It is okay to wikilink articles in this section because tables are the only exceptions to the overlinking guideline of Wikipedia.


Every pay-per-view article should contain a section labeled References, which is where the references are to appear when the {{reflist}} templateis used. If more than twenty references are used, the list should be formatted in two columns, which can be done by using the extra parameter, {{reflist|2}}.

External links[edit]

The final section (which is not mandatory) should contain relevant External links to the pay-per-view article. Examples would include the official website of the event, the website of the venue of the event, or a profile page by a pay-per-view provider. This links should be written in alphabetical order, as shown below.

Aside from external links, if there are any relevant templates to the article, it should be placed under the external links. Alternately, if there are no external links, the article should end with the references section and any templates should be placed below the references. Every event article should also contain relevant categories, which are placed below the templates (if any).


Sourcing is a major part of expanding wrestling articles. Only use reliable sources to verify facts and claims in articles; if a claim is not verified by a source in the first two lists below, it is probably best not to add it as it will likely be challenged and removed. The sources in the third list should be used only to cite uncontroversial material, such as attendance. Websites in list four should be avoided altogether.

Official promotion websites
  • - WWE replaces the contents of PPV match previews on their site with the match results when they are available. This means that any content taken from these articles should be archived using or WebCite. Archive links can be added to {{Cite news}} templates using the archiveurl, archivedate, and deadurl parameters.
  • Impact - TNA
  • ROH
  • Official websites of other promotions
Websites proven reliable
  • - The Wayback Machine is a great way to find information by a reliable source that may have been removed by the promotion, but can be found using the archive of the internet.
  • Find Articles - This is not related to wrestling in any way, but typing in the event you're working on in the search box may come up with some very good results.
  • Internet Wrestling Database - This source is reliable for match results, and contains match results of various wrestling promotions in the world, including WWF/E, NWA, WCW, ECW, TNA, ROH, NJPW, AJPW and NOAH.
  • Pro Wrestling Illustrated - The magazine and website has an established staff of writers and the organization has been in operation since 1979.
  • Pro Wrestling Torch - This organization has an established staff of writers and newsletter, and has been in operation since 1987.
  • PWInsider - This website was founded in 2004 and has an established staff - writer Richard Trionfo has a knack for inventing names for finishing or signature moves - "IEDDT", "Blackpool Slam", "Fandangobama Jam", etc. - so don't use his reports to cite move names.
  • SLAM! Wrestling - Includes detailed Raw, SmackDown and ECW results as well as detailed PPV results and wrestler biographies back to 1997.
  • - Founded in 1997, this source is marginally reliable, its use is strictly for television and pay-per-view results.
  • Wrestling Observer/Figure 4 Weekly - The newsletter released by Dave Meltzer; reliable for results and historical information but not to be used to source speculation and rumors
Other websites (not yet proven)
Use with caution, mainly for uncontroversial claims such as the attendance of the event, as these sites do not have proven fact checking.
  • 411mania - This site has reports on many PPV and weekly events (dating back to mid-2000), as well as numerous columns.
  • CageMatch This site has an extensive list of wrestling events and matches which a wrestler has wrestled, which can be filtered by ring name / promotion / year or whether it occurred on or TV/PPV.
  • Classic Wrestling Articles - This source provides articles from newspapers and magazines dating from 1852, but since it is a blog, it is recommended not to directly cite it, but instead use it to find the original articles to cite from.
  • Diva Dirt - This source provides niche coverage on the more obscure aspects of women's wrestling. Although its writers lack prestige, few reliable sources listed above provide its niche coverage (women's independent wrestling, TNA Xplosion, DVD reviews and interviews). However, if any information is able to be sourced by the reliable sources listed above, use them over Diva Dirt.
  • Online Onslaught - This source has detailed results of every WWE/F PPV, along with results of Raw, SmackDown, Heat and Velocity.
  • The History of WWE - This source has results of every single WWE, WCW and ECW program. Has full-detailed results of some shows and matches.
  • Online World of Wrestling - Has profiles on thousands of wrestlers, as well as results of mainly every promotion in the world
  • Pro wrestling history - This site list results of matches, pay-per-views, tournaments, history of promotions, buyrates, and attendance for events.
  • Solie - This site has exhaustive listings of title histories
  • WrestlingData - Largest database of wrestlers and results on the web, extensively cross-referenced.
Unreliable sources
Avoid using these websites as sources.

Note: These are some examples of unreliable websites that should be avoided when writing pay-per-view articles. These sources are websites that report rumors, speculation, and have no reliable sourcing (where they get their information from). If the source you have in mind is not listed under the reliable sources section, it should not be used to source controversial statements.

Thank you for adhering to the above guidelines,
WP:PW members.