WrestleMania 34 and 33 discussed by The Undertaker.
Both WrestleMania 33 and 34 included The Undertaker competing in singles competition. At WrestleMania 33, he fell in defeat to Roman Reigns in the main event and the following year, he picked up a win over John Cena.
The match with Cena lasted two minutes and 45 seconds. In a new interview with Chris Van Vliet, Undertaker dove into how prepared he was to have a lengthy match with Cena.
It was not until he arrived to the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans that he discovered how short his match would be. When he met with Vince McMahon, he said McMahon found it funny to see his reaction to the match length. At one point, Undertaker said he was either doing 30 minutes or he would not be competing but both Cena and McMahon agreed the match should be short.
Yeah, I didn’t know it was gonna be short till I got there that day. So I’ve trained for a 45 minute war, and all right, here’s redemption. I’m gonna, man, I am going to light this place on fire, I felt good. And Vince calls me into his office and he goes, okay, he says it’s just gonna be about five minutes, you know, ‘You’re gonna squash him.’ I’m like, ‘What? What?’ And, you know, Vince, he just thought that was the funniest [thing], because he knew how hard I’d been training… I’m like, ‘No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no.’ I said, ‘I’m doing 30 or I’m not going out.’ And he’s like, ‘Mark, that’s not what we need.’ And I’m like, ‘No Vince.’ I was like, ‘Where’s John? Where’s he at?’ So John comes in, he goes, ‘Oh no.’ He goes, ‘I talked mad smack about you dude. Yeah, you need to beat me quick and get this over with.’ I’m like, ‘Are you kidding me? It’s like we’ve never worked on pay-per-view. Are you [serious]?’ And this is WrestleMania, give me a break here. And they both, they ganged up on me. I threw my hands up. I was like, I can’t believe [it], and Vince just thought that was the funniest thing because like I said, I trained like an animal, I was so unbearable at home. I mean, as far as my diet and the training and just all my protocols of, you know, recoup, rehab, I was a nightmare. I get there and yeah, five minutes. And it was like that was it.
Elsewhere in the conversation, he further spoke about the WrestleMania 33 bout. Undertaker shared that at the 2017 Royal Rumble, he knew he would not be physically ready for the forthcoming match with Roman Reigns. He had the mindset that Reigns was the next guy up and it was the right move business-wise.
Yeah, so I was extremely beat up. And, you know, I had toyed with the idea of hanging it up. I knew it that year (2017) when I got to the Rumble, I wasn’t going to be ready, I wasn’t gonna be ready for Mania, but I’d already committed to the program. Didn’t know that, didn’t know what we were going to do yet, I just knew that I was going to work with Roman, and we got there that day, and I was like, man, I knew I was in bad shape. And my hip, my right hip, which I had surgery right after that, to have it, a Birmingham hip resurface done after that. You know, it was just the right thing to do. Not knowing if I was going to be able to come back again, and work anymore. So there I was, he was coming up, and he was going to be the face of the company, and it was the right thing to do. And I didn’t, you know, I’d already [lost], the streak had already been beat, so it was the right thing to do business wise, because I didn’t, like I said, I didn’t know that I was going to come back again… That hat, the hat on the coat, all that being placed in the ring was 100% legitimate. At the end of it, I was done, and that was my way of saying goodbye. And yeah, it wasn’t, it wasn’t a plan or staged thing. And then I get my hip fixed, I get a call, and they want me to work with Cena. I’m like oh crap man. So I trained, I know I’ve given you more than you asked for, but it was like, okay, this is my chance for redemption… If you watched The Last Ride, you know how disappointed I was in my performance, and that I put myself in that situation because I just couldn’t physically get to where I needed to be for Roman, and how important that was. And just as hard as I tried, I mean I trained like an animal, but I mean my hip, it held me back and I’m not making excuses, but that’s the extent of it. So now I’ve got a new hip, and I’m like, oh man, and it’s Cena and I was like, oh crap. So Vince called me and said, ‘What do you think? And I was like, ‘I don’t know.’ I’ve rehabbed my hip and I’m working out again, but I had no plans of getting back in the ring. And so I said, ‘Give me a few weeks.’ So I get a ring shipped down here to Texas, and I rent a place and I build this, I put the ring in this building, and I start training and lo and behold, I can move again. So, probably the hardest that I’ve ever trained, not ever I trained, but the hardest I’ve been able to train in probably 10 years. And I was ready man. I was, my cardio, I trained for like a 45 minute [match].
At WWE Raw 30, Undertaker made his on-screen return and was involved in a segment with Bray Wyatt and L.A. Knight ahead of their ‘Pitch Black’ match at the Royal Rumble.