WWE: Eight Not-so-Famous WrestleMania Streaks
As we travel down what remains of the Road to WrestleMania, The Undertaker prepares to defend his vaunted winning streak against Triple H for the third time.
The Undertaker's streak of WrestleMania victories, as fans the world over are well aware, has run all the way up to 19 consecutive wins, a feat that will almost assuredly never be matched.
While it is the most celebrated record of the last two and a half decades, it is not the only streak at the big dance.
Here are a few WrestleMania* streaks that will live on in the annals of wrestling infamy.
* I'll be talking about a lot of different WrestleManias in this article. For the sake of clarity, I will be referring to them all using Arabic numerals.
Crush made his WWF debut as a cohort of Ax and Smash, becoming the third member of Demolition. Using the Freebird Rule, he was able to defend Demolition's tag team titles despite not having won the belts himself.
As part of the legendary team, he first came up short at WrestleMania 7 alongside Smash in a tag team match against Genichiro Tenryu and Koji Kitao, who were on loan from a Japanese promotion.
His struggles continued at WrestleMania 9 against Doink the Clown, who performed a bit of "magic" to create a doppleganger while the referee was knocked down. Doink and his double utilized a prosthetic arm to pummel and ultimately defeat the Hawaiian Superstar.
At WrestleMania 10, Crush was the victim of a unique stipulation. In a Falls Count Anywhere match against "Macho Man" Randy Savage, if either Superstar was pinned, he had sixty seconds to return to the ring or he would lose the match.
Crush gained the first pinfall, but Savage returned to the ring with two seconds to spare. Crush also avoided defeat by returning to the ring following a pinfall, but after brawling backstage and finding himself bound with rope, Crush was unable to return to the ring and lost his third WrestleMania match.
Crush's final WrestleMania effort came at the 13th edition of the event as part of the Nation of Domination. He, Faarooq, and Savio Vega came up short in a Chicago Street Fight against Ahmed Johnson and the Legion of Doom. Crush fell victim to the Doomsday Device and was struck with a 2x4 for good measure, sealing the defeat for his team.
Finlay may have loved to fight, but at WrestleMania he didn't love to win. The Belfast Brawler racked up losses at four consecutive WrestleMania events in his career.
After failing to retrieve the Money in the Bank briefcase at WrestleMania 22 and 23, Finlay's next outing appeared to be his best chance for victory. He took on John Bradshaw Layfield in a "Belfast Brawl," a falls count anywhere, no disqualification match at WrestleMania 24.
Despite trash can lids, kendo sticks (what about this match was Irish?), and interference from Hornswoggle (Oh... that.), Finlay fell victim to a Clothesline from Hell and his third straight defeat.
Finlay gave Money in the Bank a final shot at WrestleMania 25, but once again it was not to be. Finlay has not competed in an official WrestleMania match since then.
He competed in a pre-show battle royal at WrestleMania 26, however, failing to claim victory.
Montel Vontavious Porter: 0-4
Montel Vontavious Porter was ballin' during his time as a WWE Superstar, but nobody would pencil him in as the Most Valuable WrestleMania Player.
After coming up short in his debut, a United States Championship match at WrestleMania 23, the Franchise Player competed in three consecutive Money in the Bank ladder matches.
Not only did he fail to claim the coveted briefcase on any of those occasions, he found himself mostly on the receiving end of more spectacular performances from his opponents.
His 0-4 record, combined with a lack of memorable spots in three tries at a match tailor-made for them, marks him as one of the least valuable WrestleMania players in history.
Vince McMahon: 0-4
Sometimes you gotta pay the cost to be the boss, and Vince McMahon is no exception.
The WWE chairman has stepped into the ring at his magnum opus on four occasions; coming up short in his debut at WrestleMania 17, a street fight against his own flesh and blood, Shane McMahon (with some help from special referee Mick Foley, a well-placed kick from Linda McMahon, and so, so, so many steel trash cans).
You can't accuse Vince of taking the easy way out, as he has competed against a who's who of WWE Hall of Famers in Hulk Hogan (WrestleMania 19), Shawn Michaels (WrestleMania 22, no holds barred), and Bret "The Hitman" Hart (WrestleMania 26, no holds barred with lumberjacks).
Vince's WrestleMania defeats have not come solely as a competitor.
At WrestleMania 23, Vince put his reputation on the line against businessman Donald Trump in a hair vs. hair match, with representatives for each man squaring off.
His representative, the late Umaga, failed to bring home a victory against the Trump-sponsored Bobby Lashley, losing the match and McMahon's salt-and-pepper locks in one fell swoop.
Furthermore, despite backing The Rock in a four corners match at WrestleMania 16 which featured a McMahon in every corner, Vince turned on his chosen combatant, smashing the People's Champion twice with a steel chair; allowing son-in-law Triple H to claim victory and adding his power to the McMahon-Helmsley Faction.
The Dudley Boyz: 0-4
Bubba Ray and D-Von Dudley were a formidable tag team back when tag teams still meant something.
The duo, with their penchant for tables, won 10 tag team championships during their WWE tenure, but somehow never managed to put it all together on the WrestleMania stage.
That's not to say that they didn't redefine what was possible in a ladder match.
It's not to say that their matches with the Hardy Boyz and Edge & Christian at WrestleMania 16 and 17 weren't deserving of Pro Wrestling Illustrated's Match of the Year award in 2000 and 2001.
In both of those matches, however, the Dudleyz walked in with gold around their waists and hobbled out with nothing.
They also failed to capture the titles at WrestleMania 18 and 20 when they found themselves in a pair of Fatal Four-way matches for the belts.
Testify? At WrestleMania, the Dudleyz have never had a prayer.
The Bizarre One made his WrestleMania debut nearly 16 years ago in a Hollywood Backlot Brawl against "Rowdy" Roddy Piper at WrestleMania 12.
While the match technically ended in a no contest, the genital abuse Goldust suffered, in addition to the embarrassment of having his women's underwear exposed to the world, made the victor abundantly clear.
In his next three matches, Goldust racked up losses at WrestleMania 13 (vs. HHH), 14 (with Luna Vachon vs. Marc Mero and Sable), and 15 (Four corners match for the Intercontinental title).
In a Hardcore title match at WrestleMania 18 against original Tough Enough champion Maven, Goldust was in the middle of retrieving some items from under the ring when Spike Dudley, taking advantage of the 24/7 rule that was in effect at the time, snuck into the ring and covered Maven for the title.
Of course, following that, Spike lost the title to The Hurricane, who lost it to Mighty Molly, who lost it to Christian, who lost it back to original champion Maven before the night was through.
Taking dark matches into account, Goldy's record takes a turn for the truly awful, coming up short in pre-show battle royals at WrestleMania 22 and 26.
With recent talk of a showdown against younger brother Cody, the Prince of Perversion may want to reconsider a curtain call, lest his dreams of finally winning on the grandest stage shatter once more.
Jeff Hardy: 0-5
Jeff Hardy has created a number of classic WrestleMania moments, including participating in the previously mentioned PWI Match of the Year at WrestleMania 16 and 17, as he and brother Matt battled for tag team gold with the Dudley Boyz and Edge and Christian.
While the troubled daredevil has climbed to unparalleled heights at the big show, he's never managed to reach the top and claim victory.
The Hardy Boyz came out on the losing end in both of those legendary matches, as well as a four corners elimination match at WrestleMania 18.
In singles competition, the younger Hardy failed to capture the Money in the Bank contract at WrestleMania 23 in a match which also featured older brother Matt.
In his most recent showcase at WrestleMania 25, Jeff found himself on the losing end of a brother vs. brother confrontation with Version 1.0.
His defeat at the hands of the elder Hardy set a record for most losses without a victory, making him the least successful competitor in WrestleMania history.
Rob Van Dam: 4-0
Contrary to what you've already read, it's not all doom and gloom at WrestleMania.
While several Superstars have experienced nothing but futility in their careers, others have soared to remarkable heights at the Showcase of Immortals.
No Superstar is currently flying higher than Mr. Monday/Thursday/Friday or any other night of the week, Rob Van Dam.
The Whole Dam Show, despite not competing since WrestleMania 23, boasts a perfect 4-0 record at the big show. Starting with an Intercontinental Championship victory over William Regal at WrestleMania 18, and continuing through a series of singles and tag team efforts.
Van Dam and his partner Booker T successfully defended their tag team titles at WrestleMania 20 in a Fatal Four-way match.
At WrestleMania 22, Van Dam retrieved the Money in the Bank briefcase, setting up his memorable WWE title win over John Cena later in the year.
Finally, RVD and his fellow ECW Originals Tommy Dreamer, Sabu, and The Sandman defeated The New Breed, a collection of watered down, rip-off ECW stars in an eight-man tag team match at WrestleMania 23.
Van Dam's only blemish is overlooked on a technicality. He and tag partner Kane failed to win the tag team championships from Lance Storm and Chief Morley on the Sunday Night Heat that aired prior to WrestleMania 19.
They won the titles the next night on Raw.
Of course, the common thread is that none of these Superstars are active competitors for WWE anymore, so their streaks will live in infamy forever.
This year's event, however, in addition to potentially extending The Undertaker's legendary win streak, also offers the opportunity for continued futility.
Mark Henry, as one of six members of Team Johnny, has a chance to extend his WrestleMania losing streak to 0-4.
Santino Marella, with a budding 2-0 record has a chance to inch closer to history as a member of Team Teddy.
And The Miz, also at 2-0, appears safe for another year as he is not currently scheduled for a match.
Who's your favorite WrestleMania loser? Feel free to discuss it in the comments.