I was really worried that this year’s Wrestlemania was going to be a bust like it was last year. the 33rd Wrestlemania card looked really lackluster and I felt distressed that the upcoming 34th edition of The Grandest Stage of Them All wasn’t going to be all that grand. Thankfully, my fears were alleviated when the WWE slowly released the match lineup for this year and there are going to be some that I’m really excited to see. AJ Styles vs. Shinusuke Nakamura for the WWE Heavyweight Championship should be a hoot. The Charlotte vs. Asuka match for the Smackdown Women’s Championship should be really good as well. I’m also excited for the Braun Strowman vs The Bar for the RAW Tag Team straps as well as the Alexa Bliss vs. Nia Jax for the RAW Women’s Championship.
There are a few matches that I know I’m going to be disappointed with, such as the two Triple Threat matches for both the Intercontinental and United States Championships as I feel this is a waste of talent by lumping in three WWE Superstars in one match. Also, I’m saddened by the thought that we’ll probably see the culmination of the Sasha Banks and Bayley feud in the
Fabulous Moolah Battle Royale instead of a proper match.
With that being said, the WWE is currently hinting at one match that, while I know it’ll be something good if they push through with it, I still don’t want to see. Right now, John Cena, the company’s current poster boy, doesn’t have a match for this year’s Wrestlemania. So, he decided to go for the legendary Deadman of the WWE, The Undertaker.
This is something that, maybe a few years ago, I would be really in favor for and I would get incredibly hyped up for. I mean, John Cena and The Undertaker are two of the biggest names in, not just the WWE, but the world of professional wrestling. They both elicit a strong reaction from fans and, like them or not, they are two WWE Superstars who can consistently put out good matches. Putting the two together in a Wrestlemania match sounds like a good idea but, in all honesty, I really think it’s a bad idea. Oh, I’m fine with John Cena being at Wrestlemania. It’s just that I’m not okay with The Undertaker coming back for one more match.
One of my biggest reasons why I’m hesitant to see The Undertaker return to face off against John Cena is that, well, he’s old. He’s not super old like Ric Flair but he’s way up there in age. He may be The Deadman but he’s actually 52 years old. He’s younger than when Hulk Hogan and Ric Flair retired for sure, but this man have fought so many wars in the past. He isn’t the spry chicken he was before and, in his most recent matches at Wrestlemania, I noticed that he slowed down considerably. As much as I would indeed want to see The Undertaker in one more classic Wrestlemania match, I would hate to see him get hurt badly just because we want to be entertained.
Storyline-wise, I don’t really see what The Undertaker’s motivation would be to fight John Cena. I will say that John Cena has been doing some incredible promos the past couple of weeks. The way that he’s goading The Undertaker into one more match with him sounds compelling in the world of professional wrestling… but his arguments are not compelling enough for The Deadman to come back to Wrestlemania.
You can boil down John Cena’s argument for The Undertaker to accept his challenge is that he owes it to the WWE fans. But does he really? He’s already given so much to the WWE already. He started his career in the WWE in 1990, almost two whole decades ago. He’s been one of the flagbearers of the company throughout that entire tenure. He’s already had so many awesome matches with the likes of Shawn Michaels, Triple H, Hulk Hogan, Bret Hart, Diesel, Stone Cold Steve Austin, The Rock, Brock Lesnar, Kurt Angle and, yes, even John Cena.I really think The Undertaker owes the WWE Universe anything.
And have you noticed the names of the people I just mentioned? Most of them have already retired from active in-ring competition. The Undertaker has been competing in the WWE since the Golden Era. If you’re not familiar with WWE “eras,” this was the time when professional wrestling became incredibly popular. This was the era when Hulk Hogan’s Hulkamania was running wild on everyone. Those were the years when wrestlers would have over-the-top gimmicks and characters. This was the period when it was chic for Hollywood stars like Mr. T and Cyndi Lauper would have storylines with the wrestlers. This was a time before Monday Night Raw was even a thing. I wasn’t even born when The Undertaker started competing in the WWE! That’s how much time he’s has been wrestling for the company!
Also, ever since Brock Lesnar broke The Undertaker’s Streak, it actually feels pointless for The Deadman to return to Wrestlemania. Before this happened, it always felt that every Undertaker match at Wrestlemania had some weight to them. There was something on the line here. It’s a little superficial in a way but The Streak was built up to be something unfathomable and something that would stand the test of time. I was even one of those people who though breaking The Streak was a terrible idea and I haven’t changed my mind.
Since losing to Brock Lesnar at Wrestlemania, The Undertaker still competed in The Grandest Stage of Them All to some rather disappointing reactions. After his first loss at Wrestlemania, he faced off against Bray Wyatt because the latter wanted to become the new “face of fear” of the WWE. There wasn’t any weight to the proceeding and, even when The Undertaker won, it felt like an empty victory. The Deadman then faced off against Shane McMahon in a Hell in a Cell match in order to block Shane from returning to the WWE. Even though he won, Shane still returned so what was the point of this? Last year, The Undertaker fought Roman Reigns and was defeated once more. But even if Roman Reigns won, it didn’t seem like a big thing because, well, there was no Streak to break!
The Undertaker’s loss at Wrestlemania brings me to my final point as to why he shouldn’t return for one more match: the way he exited the ring. The match itself was good but not a classic like the one he has against Shawn Michaels or Triple H. It was an truly melancholic scene to see The Undertaker slowly remove his fight gloves, fold up his iconic trenchcoat and remove his hat and roll his eyes into the back of his head one more time. He then left all of this gear, the very things that make The Undertaker the icon he is, in the middle of the ring before slowly exiting through the middle ropes. He then walks to ringside and, in a rare moment of breaking character, kisses Michelle McCool, his real life wife before slowly waking up the ramp to close out Wrestlemania.
This was wrestling storytelling at its finest. Without uttering a single word, The Undertaker managed to convey the clear message that this was him retiring from the world of professional wrestling. He left his Undertaker persona at Wrestlemania. You could see the pain in his face at the thought of leaving it all behind but, at the same time, you can also see how tired and battle worn he’s become. This was his time to move on. This was his way of telling the WWE Universe that it was time for him to go. That last scene was brilliant and emotional. But the WWE seems to want to make this beautiful retirement message all for naught.
While I have no doubt John Cena and The Undertaker can pull off a classic match at this year’s Wrestlemania, I think it’s time for The Undertaker to stay dead, so to speak. He’s the last cowboy of a bygone era and he already walked into the sunset. He already said his goodbyes to the WWE and the world of professional wrestling yet John Cena and the WWE Universe are selfishly crying out for one more match. I love The Undertaker character but he deserves to stay as Mark Calaway now. And, yes, that is his real name.
Do you think The Undertaker should return for one more match? Let me know in the comments below!