WrestleMania 33 became the resting place for a wrestling icon. We just didn’t see it coming.
The night was filled with many great bouts. AJ Styles defeated Shane McMahon as arguably the most surprising match of the night. Chris Jericho and Kevin Owens lived up to the hype. The Hardy Boyz returned in rousing form. Seth Rollins got his revenge against Triple H. Even Brock Lesnar and Goldberg managed to make their five minutes count in an explosive championship bout.
Yet, the water cooler talk became what happened at the main event. WrestleMania 33 closed with The Undertaker taking on Roman Reigns.
The build-up wasn’t necessarily up to par. It was all for pride and honor as both men believed they ruled the WWE’s yard. The match itself wasn’t a five-star classic, and it was far from perfect. However, it still became memorable for the story being told in the match.
Both Reigns and Undertaker hammered each other with chair shots, tables and hard-hitting moves o wear each other down. It culminated with Reigns hitting his patented spear, tackling Undertaker to the mat. The referee attempted to count to three for the pin, but Undertaker kicked out.
Reigns hit two more, but The Undertaker wouldn’t stay down. He sat up, like he always did. This time was different; he fell to the mat once more.
Reigns felt sympathetic, until The Undertaker told him he didn’t have what it takes to finish the job. Reigns used the momentum from the ring ropes to hit a fourth spear. Reigns picked up the win, but The Undertaker wasn’t done yet.
He looked around in the audience and saw fans clapping. It’s as if they knew what would happen next. The Undertaker took off his gloves and placed them in the middle of the ring along with his coat and hat. He then left the ring, raised his hand one more time and sunk into the ground from whence he came.
The moment was iconic as his first appearance in Survivor Series of 1990. Yes, you read that right. The Undertaker ended his career after 27 years in the WWE.
What more can be said about The Undertaker’s career?
His legacy became synonymous with WrestleMania itself, going undefeated for 21 years and finishing with a 23-2 record. He’s been world champion seven times and has had a plethora of rivalries over the years.
The best way to sum up The Undertaker’s career is those moments at WrestleMania 33. He was the wrestler that never quit, never relented in his assault.
It’s only fitting he would be on the receiving end of a beating and toying with Reigns, considering he was in Reigns’ position seven years ago.
It was The Undertaker who ended Shawn Michaels’ career at WrestleMania 26. Now, it was time for The Undertaker to ride off into the sunset.
The Undertaker made you feel for him and go on a ride with him, no matter if he was The Phenom or The Deadman. It’s a testament to the performer for the fans to support him for more than two decades.
He represents nearly every era the WWE has ever had. From the fleeting days of the Rock N’ Wrestling Connection, to the Attitude Era, The Undertaker was in his infancy. From the era of Ruthless Aggression to going TV-PG, The Undertaker was always there.
He may have not been there full-time in the end, but he was always there.
It brings us full circle to The Undertaker. He ended his career the same way he came in: fighting. And The Undertaker wouldn’t have it any other way.
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