The prospect of seeing these two men in the ring is tantalizing. However this match will fail to live up to the hype if “The Streak” is the only defining reason for the fight to happen.
The WWE must establish a storyline that leads to why the two are coming to blows. Old School Raw tonight is the perfect opportunity to get this rivalry underway.
Undertaker’s ability to win at WrestleMania is legendary, and has helped The Deadman achieve his status amongst the greatest wrestlers of all time. However this run has been so long in the making there is no way that the WWE will ever let this prized asset go.
Any Superstar who tries to break it is destined to fail.
This would not matter if an up-and-coming Superstar was trying his luck against The Deadman. Having a go at such a prestigious accomplishment can help someone’s career when they are building a reputation within the WWE.
The Streak can also be a useful enhancement of a feud where another legendary figure is taking on The Undertaker.
This has been the case in recent years with Shawn Michaels and Triple H, where these matches became a special attraction. On these occasions, The Streak was tied up in all three mens’ legacies as current or future Hall of Famers.
CM Punk would not gain anything from being another victim of The Streak though.
The Second City Saint is in the prime of his career, and is coming off more than a year with the WWE title. As stated, he gains nothing from being another face in Undertaker’s WrestleMania losing list. He also does not hold the same grandeur in name as ‘Taker’s previous two opponents, which made those events special attractions by themselves.
The Triple H vs. Brock Lesnar match already holds that unique position of grandeur on the card anyway.
Why Undertaker would want to face Punk over The Streak is also somewhat of a mystery. Punk claims to be the best in the world, so he could use that to claim he can end Undertaker’s reign at ‘Mania. Why ‘Taker might respond to that claim is unclear. Punk has lost twice to The Rock, and again in a high profile match with John Cena, so that claim is looking a little thin.
Of course the WWE could well ignore his losses, and plow ahead with that route. However, this would make WWE fans wonder if CM Punk can actually beat ‘Taker at WrestleMania. The honest answer to that is no, so the feud would be less intense.
This is unlikely to be repeated as both championship belts have matches already, and Undertaker is unlikely to ever return to the roster full time.
A more engaging feud would come in the form of a storyline that gives both men motivation to defeat the other.
Punk’s feelings of inadequacy—despite outside cockiness—may be the best possible route to go down. The Undertaker could well represent everything that Punk has yet to achieve. Doing this would take Undertaker’s entire legacy into account, rather than The Streak in isolation.
This benefits Punk, win or lose at WrestleMania, as it opens up the prospect of banishing The Deadman from WWE television. A rematch, or a beatdown after losing at ‘Mania could be the excuse used to allow ‘Taker his 11 months off every calendar year.
The act of quelling The Undertaker has only ever been accomplished by top stars.
CM Punk can utilize this achievement as part of his “best in the world” persona, and go on to reestablish his position as WWE’s top heel.
If the concentration is solely on The Streak then banishment or not, CM Punk gains little as he will have failed to end Undertaker’s WrestleMania dominance.
Old School Raw tonight is the perfect opportunity to start this feud. Punk could use the platform to attack all the previous generations, with The Undertaker as the focal point.
What is almost guaranteed is that these two men will shine on the big stage, regardless of the reason they are fighting. CM Punk has been a very consistent performer over the past few years, and ‘Taker always seems to find one last solid outing.
So it would be a shame for their endeavors to be muted by a feud that is held together on the principle that only one man can win.