Why The Undertaker's Legacy Is Much More Than 'The Streak'
When Brock Lesnar pinned The Undertaker with the three count at Wrestlemania 30 in New Orleans last year, I'm not sure there was anyone watching who wasn't completely dumbfounded.
Once a thing of legendary proportions, the undefeated streak of 21-0 vanished in just seconds as many fans couldn't believe Vince McMahon would let such a thing happen.
That moment could only be described by this reaction:
For many of us, that loss represented the end of a wrestling era none of us wanted to let go.
However, the notion that The Undertaker's legacy will forever be marred by that one moment is pure bullsh*t.
When you look at the body of work constructed by the Deadman over his 30-plus years in pro wrestling, it's hard to find another superstar who's ever had the same impact.
The Undertaker has a certain presence unlike any other superstar today.
His mystical persona, heavily aided by Paul Bearer at the height of his career, made him one of the mainstays of the Attitude Era, and seeing a guy his size move the way he did off the top rope is still incomparable -- well, except maybe to his evil brother, Kane.
His epic entrance always makes him stand out from the rest.
Every time The Undertaker enters the ring, his presence is amplified by one of the greatest spectacles in all of wrestling.
Don't lie, when you were a child watching "Monday Night Raw," you thought this was actually a dead dude on your TV!
While the locker room constantly changed around him, The Undertaker stayed the same and was the backbone of a company trying to evolve with the times.
With guys like Ric Flair and Hulk Hogan leaving, Bret Hart and HBK getting injured and new stars like Stone Cold, Triple H and The Rock all developing, Taker stayed the same.
Of course, he did that whole "American Badass" gimmick on the motorcycle for a while, but that sh*t was definitely lit!
The Undertaker was the one holding it down as the company's most consistent star; he could feud with anyone and create a real rivalry.
His matches with Mankind brought the sport to an entirely new level of risk and realness.
This was the turning point for Hall of Fame careers:
He represents consistency inside the squared circle. The fact he's performing in his 23rd consecutive Wrestlemania is something no other superstar can say.
While his Wrestlemania 31 opponent, Bray Wyatt, could very well be the new face of fear, their match could end up being a passing of the torch of sorts.
The promos leading up to the event prove Bray Wyatt is ready.
No matter what happens at Wrestlemania 31, and certainly regardless of what happened at Wrestlemania 30, The Undertaker will always be in a class of his own.