For decades, the Undertaker was the conscience of the WWE locker room. Whether it was intimidating Shawn Michaels into putting over “Stone Cold” Steve Austin at WrestleMania XIV or choking Kurt Angle for laying his hands on Vince McMahon, Taker was always there for his peers and newcomers.
Taker worked alongside who’s who of the wrestling industry during his illustrious career. Long before he became WWE’s resident “Dead Man”, Taker portrayed the “Mean Mark” Callous character in WCW and was managed by none other than Paul Heyman, aka Paul E. Dangerously.
Heyman recently sat down with The Zaslow Show to talk about Taker’s unopposed reputation in the WWE. The ECW mastermind worked with Taker during the height of the Ruthless Aggression era as well as for The Phenom’s WrestleMania feuds with CM Punk and Brock Lesnar in 2011 and 2014, respectively.
“It’s an honor because, for many years, he was the conscience of the WWE locker room. He’s like the avenging gunslinger that comes into town in a spaghetti western and cleans the joint up, he was the one that everyone looked to for guidance.
“He was the judge and the jury, and me being the executioner. There are a lot of people that give a lot of credit to Stone Cold Steve Austin, and The Rock, and D-Generation X, and the cast of the Attitude Era, and rightfully so. I mean, they all deserve an enormous amount of credit.
“Not enough credit goes to The Undertaker for his presence in the locker room, for guiding that locker room through a very tough navigation and a trajectory into the future. This was not only the standard-bearer in terms of big men working, this was the standard-bearer in terms of a modern-day work ethic.
“And he, it’s very humbling when you realize the enormity of his contributions to this industry and the fact that he so graciously is willing to pass it on to the next generation. He is a man whose means and methods and the manner in which he presents himself is something we should all aspire to.”
The Undertaker is set to headline WWE’s Hall of Fame Class of 2022 ahead of WrestleMania 38 this year. He will receive the honor in his home state of Dallas, Texas. The Hall of Fame ceremony will take place on Friday (April 1) at American Airlines Center.
Thanks to Wrestling Inc for the transcription. What’s your take on this story? Sound off in the comments!