The Undertaker is keeping an open mind when it comes to a return to the WWE ring.
Taker spoke with Jan Murphy of The Toronto Sun this week to promote “The Last Ride” on the WWE Network and admitted that Father Time is right behind him.
“Obviously, you don’t do this business unless you just truly love it,” Taker said. “You might try to attempt to do this business, but if it’s not in your heart and soul, you’re not going to be a success. You might be a flash in the pan. For most of my adult life, this is what I’ve done and I’ve done it at the highest level. I do realize that Father Time is tapping me on the shoulder. And I don’t want to turn around and face him.”
The 55 year old WWE Legend said he feels like he has at least one match left that is befitting what he feels like the legacy of the character deserves.
“I feel like I’ve got a match (left) that is befitting what I feel like that the legacy of The Undertaker deserves,” he said. “But the hard part is, if I grade myself, I grade myself on where I was physically in the early 2000s. I don’t grade myself on the curve of it being 2020 and being 55 years old.”
He continued, “The expectations of what I have for myself, with the limitations that I have physically, it really is a delicate balance. You’ve got to take a really good look (and ask yourself), OK, is this the match that you’re looking for, is it in the realm of possibility and do I risk long-term damage?? I have young kids still,” he added. “Do you run the risk of jeopardizing your long-term health? All this is kind of what’s going on in my head during this docuseries. What I’m looking for and trying to achieve. Trying to come to grips with leaving that aspect of the business.”
Taker also said he will never truly retire from the business as he plans to be involved after he hangs up his boots.
“I’ll never, ever retire completely,” he said. “I may not get in the ring and wrestle anymore, but I’ll always somehow be involved I’m sure within the industry. For 30 years, I’ve been a mainstay in the ring.”
Taker knows how he would like to retire from in-ring action and talked about being jealous of WWE Hall of Famer Shawn Michaels and how Shawn had the Streak vs. Retirement match in 2010.
“I tell people all the time how jealous I am of Shawn (Michaels), Taker said. “When we had the retirement match, he was such peace and was so content, he knew that he had done everything that he wanted to do and he got to go out on his terms and he went out on a match that was befitting his legacy.”
Taker likened his own situation to those of NFL greats John Elway and Brett Favre.
“There’s the John Elway ending and there’s the Brett Favre ending,” he said. “John Elway wins the Super Bowl and retires. Brett Favre leaves the Packers and he goes to the Jets, then he goes to the Vikings and he just never gets there again. Then his last game is kind of sad. I’m trying really hard not to have that ending and coming to grips with the fact that I may not get the Elway ending. That’s what this whole process has been. I’m trying to weave a real intricate web here and I’ve got to make some really tough decisions very soon.”
Taker was asked if the new WWE Network docuseries offered him closure if he were to never wrestle again. He confirmed that the final episode has not been filmed.
“It’s hard to say right now,” he answered. “We haven’t finished the last episode (of the docuseries). At this point right now, today, it’s hard to really give you a definitive answer.”
The Deadman worked WrestleMania 36 this year in the unique Boneyard Match against AJ Styles. He’s open to working WrestleMania 37 in Los Angeles next year, but said he has no interest in another WrestleMania match where there are no fans.
“It would be tough to try to look forward to going and performing a match in an empty warehouse,” he said.
Taker continued and indicated that his involvement at a future WrestleMania event is far from a guarantee at this point.
“You never say never, but to make it to Mania again, it’s going to take something really, really juicy,” he said.