To End The Streak?
It’s that time of year TJR faithful, and as cliché as it sounds to say; we are on the Road To Wrestlemania. With the biggest stage in all of pro-wrestling mere weeks away, the card for the showcase of the immortals is taking shape. This past Monday, all speculations and rumors were proven accurate when CM Punk emerged victorious on Raw to earn the chance to face The Undertaker and end the 20-0 Wrestlemania winning streak. Even with The Undertaker in pretty bad shape, I think the match could steal the show at Wrestlemania, and contrary to popular belief, I think this is the year that the Undertaker’s streak should come to an end.
There are vast circles of wrestling fans that have deemed the streak untouchable. They view it with reverence and sentiment, and the thought of seeing it ended not only seems disrespectful, but heartbreaking. I appreciate and understand their viewpoint, but in the grand scheme of things, The Streak would be for all intents and purposes meaningless if it were to go unbroken. In a few years it would simply be a number thrown around when they tell us how awesome The Undertaker was when he wrestled. It would be the focal point of his Hall of Fame induction, and an interesting factoid, but once The Undertaker stops wrestling (which will likely be very soon), The Streak serves no meaningful purpose the current or future narratives. It would only live to serve as a memory of a fictional character’s dominance.
The fact of the matter is that people have inflated what The Streak means to WWE, and think that ending it would be cataclysmic. It can’t be done, nor should it even be considered; but let’s consider it, shall we? What would happen if CM Punk were to defeat The Undertaker at Wrestlemania 29?
The answer to that is simple; the WWE would have delivered the single biggest gut-punching moment in the 28 years of Wrestlemania, a sobering, stomach-churning, moment of shock that has been built for 20 Wrestlemanias. The reaction alone is reason enough to do it in my opinion. The outrage some fans would express, the sadness others would outpour, the result would render the most hardcore fans nearly catatonic for several minutes after it has come to pass. Maybe I’m exaggerating slightly for dramatic effect, but only slightly. The truth is, it would instantly be considered one of the biggest moments in Wrestlemania history as opposed to just another Undertaker win. The ability to garner that kind of visceral, emotional response from your audience, especially in the WWE, is what storytelling is all about. To let the opportunity to create a classic and emotional moment like this slip away would be a damn shame.
If the reaction isn’t enough, let’s look at the implications of a CM Punk win over The Undertaker at Wrestlemania. 20 times, superstars have tried and failed to beat Undertaker at Wrestlemania. If CM Punk, the self-professed Best In The World, WWE’s biggest villain, were to cleverly do what no one else could, he would prove to be exactly what he says he is. If he weren’t already, he would be a living legend and a sure-fire Hall of Famer. Furthermore, his narrative about himself being God will progress beautifully. He will have destroyed a perceived pillar of the WWE on the WWE’s biggest stage. He could proclaim that he is no longer a spoke on the wheel, but that he is the engine the WWE relies on to run. He is irreplaceable, he is undeniable, and when he is finished in the WWE, when he’s done carrying the business on his broad shoulders, the entire company will fall from grace. When that day comes, he will watch the WWE crash and burn from the comfort of his own home, because they will have served their purpose to him, not vice versa.
The outcome would also send a shockwave through the WWE locker room. How would the other superstars react? Would they be happy that someone finally did it, or bummed that the streak came to an end? What about the countless superstars that tried and failed to end the streak, how would the view Punk after such a huge win? The implications stretch farther than just Punk and Taker.
Now the most important question to the Streak worshipers is what does a loss at Wrestlemania do to the Undertaker? In my opinion, nothing at all. It doesn’t tarnish his legacy, it doesn’t ruin his legend, and it doesn’t destroy everything he’s built. The Undertaker would still be every bit as much of the Icon he was heading into the match. Look at any legends career, in any sport, and tell me how many times are their blemishes focused on? When you’ve achieved that legendary status, your blemishes are ignored and your triumphs are celebrated. When Undertaker is inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame, there will be no mention of the one loss, but you can bet your ass they’ll talk about the 20 straight Wrestlemania wins, the longest streak of consecutive wins at Wrestlemania in the history of the WWE. So relax, The Undertaker is and forever will be The Phenom in the WWE.
In conclusion, I understand that it’s more likely that Undertaker will win at Wrestlemania and retire Streak intact, but the idea that The Streak is untouchable is laughable. The streak ending would be the biggest attention-grabbing move the WWE could make. The moment itself would be a gut-punch the likes of which we’ve never felt in the WWE. It would be the defining moment of a generation of wrestling fans and would progress the WWE’s narrative more so than The Undertaker winning at Wrestlemania and riding off into the sunset. If I were in the position to book Punk vs. Taker, and had The Undertaker’s blessing to do so, I’d without question make history at Wrestlemania 29.
Who knows, maybe Vince McMahon sees things my way. Regardless, I’m excited to see CM Punk and Undertaker wrestle at the showcase of the immortals, because quite frankly it’s been a while since Undertaker losing felt like a possibility.
There you have it, but I want to know what you guys think? Am I being blasphemous? Or would you be in favor of The Streak ending? How would you book Undertaker vs. CM Punk this year?
Until next time folks, I’m Matty J. Douglas suggesting that if you’re into folklore and fantasy, read Dreams and Shadows by C. Robert Cargill. It’s a great read in my humble opinion. Have a great week everybody!