The Undertaker sat down this week on Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show. During the interview, The Undertaker was asked whether he truly wanted “The Streak” to end in 2014 at WrestleMania 30 to Brock Lesnar.
“Internally and the way this business works, I knew someday it would end,” Taker admitted. “In our industry, you don’t walk away like Floyd [Mayweather], undefeated, or Rocky Marciano. It just doesn’t happen that way in wrestling.
“It was always in the back of my mind that it would end. Although, most of my peers and people that I work with thought it was a horrible decision, and I just asked Vince, ‘are you sure? Is this what you want?’ He was like, ‘if it’s not Brock, who can beat you?’ Alright, well, it’s your call.”
Michelle McCool revealed recently that WWE had wanted to break her husband’s WrestleMania streak as far back as WrestleMania 24 against Edge. Undertaker admits that he didn’t really have much say and that he was all about business rather than how his character would look.
“Everybody thinks I have all this juice like I can say yes or say no,” Taker said. “I could have said no, but what good was that gonna do? That really would have disappointed people. What do I do? I go out and throw a tissy and go, ‘if I’m not going over, then I’m not going in.’ That’s not me. I’m business, and business comes first before anything personal.
“So I just double-checked and made sure he was sure 100 percent that was what he wanted to do, and that was the plan so I went with it.”
The Undertaker suffered a concussion during his match against Lesnar at WrestleMania 30. He discussed how his schedule changed from a part-time schedule and the effect that has on his body.
“At that time, you have to realize what I’m going through, and I think it’s covered at the end of [episode] one,” Taker stated. “So I’m doing WrestleMania, and I’m going from WrestleMania and going to have to have some kind of surgery to repair whatever was hurting before I went into Mania. And then I go into rehab. And then I go right then into [what] I call camp now because I don’t work a full schedule. I have to train like a fighter does. Like I have to back out 16 weeks and I have figure out what my goals are whether I need to add weight, whether I need to lose weight. [The] biggest thing being getting my cardio right. When you’re on the road all year long, you just stay in shape, your body’s used to the trauma.
“So I had to stretch of time there where I was only working once a year at Mania, twice a year at most if they have a special RAW, Smackdown or something, and I think what happened was it just caught up to me. Everything was hurting, so I couldn’t go in the ring and spar. So my body wasn’t used to the trauma of a match. Most guys aren’t able to physically throw me around quite like Brock could, so I took a lot of bumps that I don’t normally take.”
The Undertaker also talked about how he could always adapt to what was going on in the ring. He discusses his history of concussions and injuries but says the concussion he suffered at WrestleMania 30 was different because he still cannot remember anything from that match.
“As far as being sensitive and all that, no, and I’ve always been sure of myself,” Taker admitted. “After a couple of years of having a handle of what The Undertaker character was, it kind of took over. I’ve talked about it. There’s not much that can happen inside the world of professional wrestling or sports entertainment as it’s now referred to that I felt that I had the answer to. Nothing could happen in a match, someone could get hurt of something like that, that I didn’t feel like I could adapt on the fly and make it happen or make it work. If I was in the ring with somebody that was horrible, it always felt like they were good enough that I could make this good.
“I was always really confident, until I got that concussion. I’ve gotten plenty of concussions and injuries, but I think it was the magnitude of the concussion, like I don’t remember that match at all.”
Taker went more into detail about what he remembers from that day, comparing it to lamp that was unplugged.
“My last memory from the day of that WrestleMania is about 3:30 in the afternoon when I had a conversation with my wife backstage,” Taker recalled. “Now, there is a process that I go through from when I start stretching and going to see the doctors. It’s a big process. I did it all. I don’t remember doing any of it. My memory picks up that night in the hospital at about 4:00 a.m. That’s when I remember what my name was and where I was at. It was bizarre. It was like I was a lamp and somebody unplugged me. That shook me.
“I’ve been injured in matches. I’ve had my orbital bones busted out and continued with matches. I’ve wrestled with broken ribs, broken foot, torn muscles and I’ve been caught on fire, and I’ve always been able to will myself through it. This was just like wow, this has never happened to me. I watched that match back, and I had no clue what was coming next.”
If you use any quotes from this article, please credit Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.