My love for the Undertaker is unparalleled, the greatest story-driven character of all time.
He has been an incredible servant for the WWE and we will never see anybody like him again. However the past few years I look at him and I get the same feeling for him that I do for Arsene Wenger at Arsenal Football Club. Just leave. The time is now, and I don’t mean for John Cena.
At WrestleMania 33, the fight gloves were placed down, the hat and coat left neatly in the middle, Undertaker hobbling over to his wife, Michelle McCool and ultimately up the never-ending ramp, for what seemed like a foregone conclusion, The End. Whilst we often hear that we’ll never see the Dead Man again and it’s always his last ride, especially after his defeat and exit to Roman Reigns at Wrestlemania 33. Undertaker still, somehow rises up and is like the bad Uncle at the party who just won’t leave. I have a lot of respect for the Undertaker but this really doesn’t feel needed.
Undertaker’s WrestleMania streak was unmissable, you had to watch it. Without the Streak, the Phenom just isn’t the same draw at WrestleMania. I always believed if anybody was to end the streak, it would have been Big Match John but I never believed they would pull the trigger and end it. Oh how wrong I was. A decision that left fans devastated and heartbroken. This ultimately should have been The Dead Man’s end. Since the Streak’s demise, Undertakers displays have been fuelled by nostalgia. The suspense and the magic is gone.
WrestleMania will always be Undertaker’s yard but without the Streak, it’s really lost that cutting edge. Undertaker hasn’t got much more to give, there is no danger of him destroying his legacy but it’s getting tedious and embarrassing to watch him continue. Whilst Cena indeed still needs a way to WrestleMania 34, this isn’t it. “23-2” is still pretty difficult to take and the thought of “23-3” would send fans into frenzy.
Age & Injuries
It may not have dawned on some people how ridiculous The Undertaker v Roman Reigns was as a main event for Wrestlemania 33. It was obvious how it was going to go down but what we had to witness was a sad display from The Phenom. From his collapsing, attempting to sit up to flubbing a Tombstone reversal sequence which we’d seen him do for years. This had to be his end. Undertaker cannot do this anymore.
When WrestleMania 34 rolls round, the Demon from Death Valley will be 53 years old. 33 of those years have been dedicated to professional wrestling. Being a part-timer or showing up once a year does not exempt his body giving from giving in to father time. There have been pictures that have surfaced before of The Undertaker on crutches, which can be explained due to hip surgery he had prior the Royal Rumble (2017). He has a history of back, bicep, chest and ankle injuries. We’ve seen him recover but nobody ever comes back 100% after something tears. When Taker worked with Brock Lesnar, Bray Wyatt, and Shane McMahon, it’s clear to see his lack of strength, speed and mobility. He has given his life, body and soul to the WWE and fans for almost 30 years and now it’s time for him preserve his health and enjoy life.
It’s Too Late
John Cena vs The Undertaker isn’t a “dream match”. It’s a bad idea. This is a nothing match. Nobody will benefit from this bout. I can’t even call this match a draw. With the streak intact and 10 years ago? Absolutely. They’ve missed the boat on this one. Sadly, Undertaker isn’t capable of putting on good matches any more. Match quality has become a genuine problem with him in recent years, and the way he went out at WrestleMania 33 put Roman Reigns over in a way that nobody else could have done. John Cena will always be a big draw and a huge asset to the company whenever called upon. However, throwing his lot in with Undertaker isn’t the answer.
Legacy/Nothing Left For Him To Prove
The Undertaker has been with the WWE since 1990 and there is simply nothing left for him to prove. He has headlined and has a record at WrestleMania that will never, ever be matched. Whilst headlining many other pay-per-views and capturing countless championships including the following :-
World Heavyweight Championship – 3 times
WWF/WWE Championship – 4 times
WWF Hardcore Championship – 1 time
WWF Tag Team Championship – 6 times
WCW Tag Team Championship – 1 time
Royal Rumble winner – 2007
12-time Slammy Award winner
A Future Hall of Famer, a truly captivating persona, a leader in the locker room and arguably the greatest of all time. We’ve heard “End of an Era” before but this time it must be. The Undertaker has nothing to win and everything to lose.