WWE Night Of Champions 2010: Kane Vs. Undertaker, A Match 13 Years In The Making
As it could be seen in a too short segment on Smackdown, Kane and The Undertaker have a long storied saga together. From enemies to allies, they went through many chronicles.
But a one-minute summary with some footage is far from enough to recapitulate one of the most intense relationships ever in WWE.
That's why I invite all of you to discover or to remember the origins of the current feud between the Brothers Of Destruction that will reach a peak at Night Of Champions.
Will it be the end of the rivalry or just another chapter? No one knows, but after the recent turns of events, with The Undertaker apparently weaker than ever, it will be a great match to watch.
The Phenom seems less phenomenal than he is used to be, and, for once, Kane is not seen as the underdog. In fact the Big Red Monster is unstoppable since he won the World Heavyweight Championship in July.
So, let's see how it all began and the long chaotic road they traveled together.
Where it all started
At the end of 1996, The Undertaker was buried alive by Mankind, marking a break in their feud. The Deadman came back as the Lord of Darkness and he won the WWF Championship at Wrestlemania 13 against Sid.
Right after the win, Paul Bearer tried in vain to get The Phenom back under his management by threatening him to reveal his dark secret.
In reaction to the refusal, Bearer cut various promos over the following months. He accused The Undertaker to have set the fire to the family house, burning alive his young brother, Kane.
The Deadman did not believe his brother was alive and he ignored his former manager's warnings about Kane's coming.
In the meantime, at Summerslam, The Undertaker lost the WWF Title to Bret Hart after Shawn Michaels' interference.
Following that, The Phenom entered a grueling feud with HBK that culminated at the In Your House: Badd Blood pay-per-view in the first ever Hell In A Cell Match.
On that 5th night of October 1997, Kane made his debut with an impact rarely seen in pro wrestling history. After tearing off the cell's door, Kane attacked The Undertaker who was left unconscious after a Tombstone piledriver. Michaels capitalized and went for the three-count.
On the road to Wrestlemania 14 and the continuing feud
After their first encounter in October 1997, Kane and The Undertaker did not meet in the ring for a match until next year's Wrestlemania. The Big Red Monster constantly interfered in his brother's matches, costing him a lot of wins.
The Undertaker always refused to face Kane and they even came to a short truce before the feud ignited again. At the 1998 Royal Rumble, Kane betrayed his brother and helped Shawn Michaels to retain the WWF Title in a casket match.
When The Deadman was put in the coffin, Kane set it on fire but it was later discovered that he escaped the fire. They finally faced each other in a match at Wrestlemania 14 and it took three Tombstone piledrivers to keep Kane down for the three-count.
The feud continued with an Inferno match, won by The Undertaker, at Unforgiven in April. Kane finally defeated his brother a few weeks later to earn a WWF Championship match at the 1998 King Of The Ring pay-per-view against Steve Austin.
The Undertaker, still with torn feelings, helped his young brother to win the match and the title because the match stipulation was to set Kane on fire if he lost. Kane however lost the Championship the next night on Raw.
Some time after, The Undertaker and Stone Cold went to war against Kane and Mankind. The teams battled for the Tag Team Championship and it changed hands twice between them.
In October, at Judgment Day, the two brothers, who came to another truce, fought until a no-contest over the vacated WWF Title. On that night, Paul Bearer turned on Kane and The Undertaker rejoined his former manager to later unleash their new heel faction, The Ministry of Darkness.
The Story Behind the Death of the Undertaker and Kane's Parents
Throughout their storied saga, we learned the details behind the brothers' parents' death in a fire that destroyed the family house.
In 1997, Paul Bearer reported the incident and accused The Undertaker of being the culprit. Eventually, the accusations were turned against Kane in some promos between them.
In 1998, Bearer revealed more details about his relationship with the brothers. He was working at their parents' funeral home when he saved Kane from the fire to hide him in an insane asylum after he suffered disfiguring injuries. It was also unveiled that Bearer was Kane's father after he had an affair with the brothers' mother.
The Undertaker always thought his brother was killed in the accident and his manager continuously supported him. Bearer, after being brutalized following his betrayal and his alliance with Mankind, decided it was time to get revenge, so he brought back Kane.
The same year, The Undertaker became heel and he created the Ministry of Darkness. He then admitted he was the one who actually set the fire.
The Ministry of Darkness and the 'Cold War'
At the 1998 Survivor Series, the coming of The Ministry of Darkness was more important than the match between Kane and The Undertaker, who won their qualifying match for the WWF Title. That match was more just a part of the tournament than a part of the feud.
In the coming months, the brothers would face each other on only a few occasions while The Phenom focused more on the evil actions of his new stable.
After The Undertaker attempted to force Kane to enter a mental institution, The Big Red Machine joined the Corporation to avoid that. Then he lost again in their second Inferno match on Feb. 22, 1999.
Until July the same year, there was almost no interaction between them. They then continued their saga in the tag-team division, alternating between being partners and rivals.
Their last encounter in the ring before June 2000 was on the Sept. 16, 1999 episode of Smackdown! in a match The Undertaker won, once again.
The Brothers of Destruction - The Roller-Coaster Relationship Continues
When The Undertaker came back in May 2000 with his brand new biker gimmick after a severe injury, he joined forces with Kane and they worked together from June to August.
The war between the brothers then restarted and they battled to a no-contest at Summerslam. For the rest of 2000, they fought few times, mostly in tag-team action or in fatal-four-way matches.
Their rivalry was not as hot as in 1997-98 and they re-united at the 2001 Royal Rumble to dominate the tag-team division until the same year's Survivor Series. That year, they won the WWF Tag Team Championship twice and the WCW Tag Team Title once.
At Summerslam, they entered the steel cage as the reigning WCW Tag Team Champions and they defeated Diamond Dallas Page and Chris Kanyon to win the WWF Tag Team Title. The Brothers of Destruction became the first Unified Tag Team Champions.
They would then lose the WWF Tag Team Championship against the Dudley Boyz and the WCW belts against Booker T and Test on Sept. 25.
Kane took some time off due to an injury and the Brothers of Destruction briefly came back together at Survivor Series. The Undertaker turned heel and they would not meet again until 2003.
One more feud begins and finishes, apparently for good
At the 2003 Survivor Series, Kane was heel and unmasked since June and he interfered in the Buried Alive match between Vince McMahon and The Undertaker. Many truck loads of earth covered the older brother who then disappeared for a few months.
Kane then started to cut promos about the end of his brother's more human personality, with his biker's gimmick. The "spirit" of The Phenom came back at the 2004 Royal Rumble to torment the Big Red Monster.
The "real" Undertaker was back and he started to play mind games with Kane in an intense showdown leading to another Wrestlemania encounter. In the weeks before their bout, Kane lost many matches due to The Deadman's comeback signs. At Wrestlemania 20, The Undertaker was back in the flesh for another win.
Their paths were slowly separated and, until 2010, they never fought against each other. They only teamed up on few occasions in what could be considered special one-time reunions.
During those years, Kane became a deranged monster, alternating from face to heel, only winning the second-tier ECW and Tag Team Championships while The Undertaker solidified his legacy by winning three World Heavyweight Titles.
The Undertaker's bigger success turned Kane mad of envy and this is what led to their coming match at Night Of Champions.
The Undertaker's Vegetative State and Kane World Heavyweight Champion
Now, after going a long way back in our memories, we are in the middle of a showdown leading to a potentially unforgettable match.
On the June 5, 2010 episode of Smackdown, Kane announced he discovered his brother in a vegetative state. The Big Red Monster then cut a series of outstanding dark promos in which he "played" with caskets as part of a mind game to inflict fear among the WWE roster.
He then would go on a rampage and attack anyone he considered to blame for The Undertaker's beatdown that put him in a deep coma. On his vengeance path, many wrestlers, including CM Punk and Jack Swagger, felt his rage and went down.
Kane eventually won the Money In The Bank contract on July 18 and cashed it the same night on a beaten Rey Mysterio to become the new World Heavyweight Champion. Both of them went on the road to Summerslam and Kane continued his psychological war, accusing him of being responsible for The Undertaker's vegetative state. Mysterio turned the accusation against the accuser and the doubts were put in everyone's mind.
At Summerslam, The Undertaker emerged from the casket brought to the ring by Kane after Mysterio couldn't manage to regain the Championship. The Big Red Machine had the upper hand on his brother and he delivered him a Tombstone piledriver, leaving the fans speechless.
In the following weeks, The Deadman revealed Kane was his aggressor and he obtained a no-holds-barred match for the World Heavyweight Championship at Night Of Champions.
However, The Phenom did not seem in great shape lately and Kane came with segments in which he declared his brother lost all his mystic powers. For a rare time, The Undertaker is on the wrong side of the mind games and he looked weak on the last episode of Smackdown. He won his match, but he clearly wasn't himself and missed several of his usual maneuvers. Previously that night, he even had difficulties talking.
With less than one week before the anticipated encounter, will The Undertaker gain some momentum? Will Kane use his brother's powers he claims to have stolen?
At the upcoming pay-per-view, will Kane get his long-awaited revenge against his nemesis? Will it be The Undertaker's revenge against his aggressor?
With a lot of questions in the air, the hype is here and the battle between the two creatures from hell might be determining for the future of both in WWE. It could be the end of the saga or just another chapter.