You knew they would do it, right?
Fans wanted to see Chris Jericho versus CM Punk. The whole world wanted to see the Rock versus John Cena. Both matches promised to be epic contests, and both matches delivered.
But, you knew that Triple H versus Undertaker was going to steal the show. Be honest.
While I expected it to be on an epic scale because of Taker’s undefeated streak, and while I knew that both men would bring all they had, I did not think that I would be sitting here writing about how the Game and the Deadman stole the show.
It seems I was not as sure as many of you likely were.
Let’s face it, Hunter’s time in the ring is all but over. Yes, he’s still in great shape, and yes he can still make anyone look like a million bucks in the ring anytime he wants, but this is not the Triple H that many fans grew up watching.
This is the Triple H who is a little bit older, a little bit wiser and a little more responsible. Especially when it comes to business.
And, his business these days has less to do with entertaining in the ring than it does with ensuring the overall product is as entertaining as it can be.
Triple H’s backstage role will eventually lead to more responsibility as the years go by, and one day he will be one of those grizzled veterans who reminisces about the good old days of WWE.
Man, I feel older just thinking about it.
By the same token, Undertaker likely does not have many matches left in him. The years are really beginning to show on his face, and though at moments he looks as though he has not lost a step, we all know that he has.
No one can last forever. Undertaker may have cheated the grave on occasion, but father time is a whole other demon altogether.
So, when Taker versus Hunter was announced for WrestleMania 28, I was excited to see two old favorites mix it up again, but I did not anticipate what I saw on Sunday night.
Wrestlemania 27 was a classic match between two outlaws, a showdown for WWE immortality. WrestleMania 28 this year was an all-out war between two battle-hardened soldiers who were fighting to survive.
And, the war was a vicious one.
Triple H attacked Undertaker with numerous chair shots to the back, so many that special guest referee Shawn Michaels began begging his best friend to stop.
“You end it, or I will!” Triple H growled, but Taker refused to give up despite Shawn’s constant pleading.
Of course, the tide soon turned, as we all knew it would, and suddenly it was Hunter on the receiving end of a chair shot assault at the hands of the Deadman.
This match did become a trade-off of near falls, much like it did last year. But as fans expected the end of every instance last year, this time, no one wanted to hear the final bell on Undertaker versus Triple H.
This was intensity. Drama in its purist form. This was pro wrestling storytelling featuring two future Hall of Famers. No one has ever done it better in WWE.
This match was not Ric Flair versus Ricky Steamboat. It was not that classic time-honored traditional mat wrestling clinic. But, it didn’t need to be.
This match was just an old school fight, performed by two of the best that WWE has ever seen. And, with the icon Shawn Michaels in the ring to soak it all in and be a part of the moment, fans got more than their money’s worth with this one.
Was it truly the end of an era? As a fan, I sincerely hope not.
We saw history at WrestleMania 28. And I'm ready to see some more at WrestleMania 29.
Let the countdown begin again.
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