Shane McMahon wrote a column for ESPN about The Undertaker to help promote Undertaker: The Last Ride, which continues today on the WWE Network. In his piece, Shane spoke about his long friendship with Taker as they two first met back in their 20s
“We just hit it off,” McMahon wrote. “You’ve got two kids in their 20s, just starting in the business. And that’s what our relationship would be built on: trust, respect and looking out for each other.”
A large portion of the article focused on their WrestleMania 32 Hell in a Cell Match in Arlington, Texas where Taker would get the best of Shane. McMahon recalled wanting to set the tone early with his friend, letting him know it was going to be a stiff match.
“I just remember my adrenaline was pumping so high at the start that I jumped high and kicked him right in the chest, really hard, to set the tone,” McMahon recalled. “Because he’s my friend, and you take more liberties with your friend than you would anyone else. So I waffled him.
“All of a sudden, I get this barrage of hands ? pow, pow, pow ? and I’m like, “Oh my God.” Three shots, I was on my heels. I was like, ‘Oh, he’s mad.’ So I kicked him in that perfect charley horse spot, and he grunted, and then I knew it was going to be really stiff for the rest of the match. A lot of people will never understand. You’re teeing off with your friend. It’s like hitting your friend on the arm and then getting one back later.
“During the match, I could hear Mark was happy. He’s like, ‘Listen, man, I’m feeling it.’ The cacophony of sound in that stadium would start way outside and literally like a huge tidal wave that came crashing underneath the ring and then come right up under us. It was powerful. We had so many of those moments in telling the story. Mark said, ‘We got ’em!’ And I said, ‘Yeah, let’s not mess it up.'”
The big spot of the match was Shane putting Undertaker on an announce table, climbing the cell, and leaping down. Taker moved out of the way as Shane came down, crashing through the table.
“He was not a proponent of me jumping off the cage,” McMahon revealed. “Not taking anything away from Mick Foley, but this was the new Hell in a Cell. This was bigger, substantially higher. Mark would say there were other things we could do, different iterations. But I told him no. This is what the story needs. It was David vs. Goliath, and you’re expecting David is just going to be killed. In that match, I had exhausted everything in my toolbox to try and win. This is what WrestleMania needs.
“I blew my belly button out ? an umbilical hernia ? because I hit so hard [on impact]. I didn’t expect that force to be that hard. But oh my god, it was. We knew we had it all the way through the match, just based on the reaction. He was happy with it when it was over.”