On a recent episode of “Shooting Blanks Wrestling Report” with Wrestling Inc. President Raj Giri on the Conversation with the Big Guy Ryback podcast, Ryback gave his thoughts on The Undertaker’s retirement and whether he has wrestled his last match.
“He had a phenomenal career,” Ryback reflected. “I think it’s unfortunate it’s happening during all this. The WrestleMania match, obviously, was really well done. Again, it sucks it’s not with fans. We’ve had that moment though where he left his gear in the ring. People thought that was it.
“This is also professional wrestling. He’s also kind of already come back several times, and who’s to say that if things get back to normal in WrestleMania in LA, Vince would do a send-off for the fans.”
While speculating on if The Undertaker would make a return, Ryback acknowledged the vast amount of injuries and the physical toll The Undertaker has taken throughout his career. He noted that those factors will effect him more as the years go on and that it might be a good time to retire.
“He’s been through a lot. He hasn’t wrestled regularly in forever,” Ryback noted. “It’s just been appearances for one or two times a year. The last year or two has been the most he’s appeared I feel like.
“His hips have been replaced. That right there in it of itself is not gonna get better. The pain’s only gonna get worse the older you get and the longer you’ve gotten those replacements, from what I understand at least. You gotta eventually hang them up.”
Ryback reflected on his interactions with The Undertaker, who at that point had only made a few appearances and was off a full-time WWE scheduled. He said their interaction was a positive one with The Undertaker commenting on Ryback’s potential before he returned from injury and became Ryback.
“I’ve had many interactions with him,” Ryback recalled. “I remember one I had with him before I debuted as Ryback. I was doing darks still when I came back from my ankle injury. We were in Laredo, TX if I’m not mistaken. He had just happened to be there for one of those Texas shows.
“I remember him giving me promising words on the potential I had from what he saw because he had seen me and met me before but he hadn’t seen me in quite a while. I just remember it was a good conversation. I remember it was a positive encounter.”
Ryback recalled another interaction with The Undertaker during WrestleMania 29 weekend. Ryback talked about learning about the change of the finish of his match against Mark Henry the day of the show. He said he had a conversation with The Undertaker about it and said that The Undertaker was always someone that was easy to talk to.
“I remember talking to him a lot around WrestleMania 29 when it was me and Mark Henry and all of that bulls–t was going on,” Ryback said. “It was just me and him in the practice ring. I think Finlay was our producer for that match. I think we had already done our walkthrough for the day, and I learned that the finish changed. I believed that I was getting ready for the big heel turn and thought I was going over on Mark [Henry], but it was like, ‘no you’re falling on your face.’ I think I just found out that day.
“I remember having a pretty lengthy discussion with Taker. He wasn’t in the mix of anything going on there, and I just remembering saying, ‘I don’t know what’s going on. This doesn’t make any sense to me,’ but I remember we had a discussion for quite a bit on all that. It wasn’t anything good or bad. It was just more bulls–tting, but he wasn’t in the mix. He wasn’t there everyday anymore at that point. He was always a great guy, always easy to talk to.”
If you use any quotes from this article, please credit Conversation with the Big Guy Ryback with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.