The streak did not have to end but it did on Wrestlemania 30 where Brock Lesner, after a third F5 did what for 21 Wreslemanias had not been accomplished – defeat the Undertaker. Lesner essentially took away the hallmark of what made my favourite wrestler of all time.
So why did the streak end? If you've seen Wrestlemania 30 – which I already have and read countless opinions and reviews analysing the event – you can essentially feel that a concussion halfway through the match had hindered The Phenom’s performance to such an extent that he wasn't able to get back on his feet for nearly 10 minutes after the second F5 from Lesner. The match quality suffered and was nowhere near as good as his previous four Wrestlemania matches.
Concussion or not, he had decided to give his streak to the former UFC and NCAA champion, a part time wrestler with nothing really left to achieve in the squared-circle and is guaranteed a future WWE Hall Of Fame induction. The fact that a full-time up-and-coming wrestler could have used the momentum and benefited from breaking the streak must have played on Undertakers mind. But then we also see guys like the Miz, who have headlined Wrestlemania, only to be derailed back into the mid-card, thanks to WWE booking and creative, mainly.
Then there is the fact that Undertaker is 49, and has wrestled a handful of times over the last 3 years with almost as many surgeries. Age has clearly caught up to the Deadman and he knows he can’t give great matches in the grandest stage of them all. If he did wrestle his last match, not a person can say he selfishly wrestled once a year, keeping the streak alive while defeating a big name in a lacklustre match. That’s not to say either that he went out in the most glorious manner possible.
But the one thing that I believe lead Undertaker, a.k.a Mark Callaway, to end the streak was the air of predictability surrounding the outcome of his matches at Wrestlemania, regardless of how the outcome was reached. No one gave Lesner a chance to win the match whist most even questioned the lead-up to the match where Undertaker had the better of Lesner in the majority of the exchanges. This, along with all the above reasons mentioned, proved enough fodder for Callaway to have his streak being broken, thus creating the most memorable and talked-about moment of Wrestlemania30.
Speaking of Wrestlemania30, the event was nowhere near as bad as some people had made it out to be on first reaction. It was well paced, well wrestled and managed to create a new star in Cesaro and immortalise one in Daniel Bryan; not to mention the opening segment, a hallmark Wrestlemania moment with Hulk Hogan, The Rock and Stone Cold Steve Austin. Perhaps the result of the John Cena vs. Bray Wyatt match left me baffled.
But the more I thought about the streak being ended, the more sense it made. I'm sure many of you vowed to never watch pro wrestling again after reading about the results, only to change your mind after seeing (or deciding to see it after reading about) the amazing promo that Paul Heyman gave the night after on RAW.
Wrestlemania this year once again shifted its focus on the next generation of WWE wrestlers, the first time it has done so since Wrestlemania21. Undertaker has very graciously accepted that part timers such as himself cannot be serving as the main attraction(s) wrestling in 30+ minute matches where more full time wrestlers should deserve that spot.
No one knows if this is the last we have seen of the Undertaker, but for all he has done for the industry, the fans; the moments and the matches he has produced, a massive “THANK YOU TAKER” is the least he deserves.