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Was Undertaker Really A Big Draw?

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  • 18-11-2015 11:38pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 3,732 ✭✭✭


    Just wondering peoples opinion on this, not trying to be controversial or anything but I was thinking about this while listening to the legends table with jbl, Austin, hbk and hhh. They are talking about Austin being an incredible draw but then I thought about Taker has ever been the guy?

    I can't think of a time when he was the big money man he always seems to have been the 2nd guy or 3rd guy but never really top.

    Anyway I think it might be a decent discussion for the week that it is


Comments

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,484 ✭✭✭Chain Smoker


    I honestly don't know about his first few years, I suspect he was more of a draw than most big dominant guys with more longevity than most of them but I can't be sure. Beyond that, with the exception of a few Mania events due to the streak (and even then never top draw level), I'd say no.

    When the Monday night wars started, the fact he was so closely tied to his gimmick meant that he was probably something of a safe choice to push because his value to WCW would've been fairly low. The guy seems savvy enough to know moving would've been a big risk. From what I can recall, his figures as a draw in the Austin era weren't that strong.He was useful in that his gimmick already being so accepted meant it could fill up television. The gimmick almost certainly would've prevented them from ever viewing him as a potential #1 (which Vince surely would've otherwise wound up trying at some point with his height).


    The fact he was never really even positioned as a possible #1 has probably helped play a huge part in his longevity. Although it could be argued that the timing of some injuries helped out quite hugely there too.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 159 ✭✭Andrew Laeddis


    Similar to HHH in that he was the guy who wrestled the guy who drew

    Not a top 10 All time draw IMO


  • Registered Users Posts: 11,611 ✭✭✭✭ERG89


    Besides Austin, Rock and Cena I'd find it hard to name a sustainable draw in WWE the last 15-18 years.
    The streak was always a draw for a few years but his Mania matches now mean sweet fûck all since wwe nixed it


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,484 ✭✭✭Chain Smoker


    ERG89 wrote: »
    but his Mania matches now mean sweet fûck all since wwe nixed it
    Considering the profound lack of interest in the Brock match, I reckon the streak had passed its expiration date. When it had gotten to a point where no one believed a crippled 50 year old man could be beaten by Lesnar, what value had it left?
    It recovered Brock from his initial quite poorly booked return, giving them someone people actually cared about to build around for a few years.

    As bad as the Bray feud was, what was the absolute guarantee that Taker would win going to add to it?


  • Registered Users Posts: 11,611 ✭✭✭✭ERG89


    Considering the profound lack of interest in the Brock match, I reckon the streak had passed its expiration date. When it had gotten to a point where no one believed a crippled 50 year old man could be beaten by Lesnar, what value had it left?
    It recovered Brock from his initial quite poorly booked return, giving them someone people actually cared about to build around for a few years.

    As bad as the Bray feud was, what was the absolute guarantee that Taker would win going to add to it?

    Probably wasn't the belief because of how badly they handled Lesnar prior to it.
    The feud with Wyatt (which still sucks today) had no heat to it as similar to the Lesnar feud he wasn't appearing to promote it. In hindsight it was only Heyman who built up the streak ending match & he never showed up once prior to the Wyatt match iirc.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,484 ✭✭✭Chain Smoker


    Lets say the Lesnar match was well built, the match was solid and Taker won. Who would have been a viable option the next year?
    Beyond that, from an overall business perspective, who would've stood to gain anything from beating an increasingly frail man? If the magic wasn't already gone, it absolutely was going and, even with his terrible build, there was no one on the horizon who could be given it than Brock that I can see. The value it had as a means of cementing Brock vastly outstrips whatever further potential returns it had.


  • Registered Users Posts: 85,474 ✭✭✭✭JP Liz V1


    Lets say the Lesnar match was well built, the match was solid and Taker won. Who would have been a viable option the next year?
    Beyond that, from an overall business perspective, who would've stood to gain anything from beating an increasingly frail man? If the magic wasn't already gone, it absolutely was going and, even with his terrible build, there was no one on the horizon who could be given it than Brock that I can see. The value it had as a means of cementing Brock vastly outstrips whatever further potential returns it had.


    Cena


    Now it is looking like Taker Vs. Cena could be for next year's WM, it would have been better with the streak still unbroken


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,689 ✭✭✭sky88


    ERG89 wrote: »
    Besides Austin, Rock and Cena I'd find it hard to name a sustainable draw in WWE the last 15-18 years.
    The streak was always a draw for a few years but his Mania matches now mean sweet fûck all since wwe nixed it

    Id agree i think Hogan, Austin, Rock and Cena are the only wrestlers who were mega draws and reasons the people came to see.

    Cena is i think different to the other 3 as the business hasn't been red hot when he was the main guy and i think at this stage the WWE itself is the draw and i think its going to be a long time before we get someone who is the outright drawing power.

    I think Taker has been a draw like hhh, hbk, bret as someone said always working with the guy who was the megastar.


  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 22,669 Mod ✭✭✭✭Bounty Hunter


    I don't think he is on the same level as those mentioned (Hogan, Rock, SCSA, Cena) or even going back further to a Flair or Sammartino but thats an elite group that very few would ever be on the same level as.

    He also was never pushed as the top guy potentially due to him having a character based Gimmick which I don't think the WWE would ever want as the top guy (not as easy to relate to for casual fans).

    The streak became one of Wrestlemanias biggest selling points though which in itself is a massive credit to Taker. Combine that with his longevity, him having arguably the greatest gimmick of all time and the fact that he had some truly great matches - the ones with HBK at Mania, Foley in the HIAC at KOTR98 and Angle at No Way Out (I think) spring to mind and Taker can be pretty pleased with his Legacy


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,949 ✭✭✭A Primal Nut


    He was a bigger draw in the last 10 years or so as a special attraction then he was when he was a full-timer. He headlined WrestleMania 13 and it was a big failure. But he headlined some WrestleManias when the streak was the focus and it was a big success, mostly because he started having great matches.

    He was always a massive draw on house shows which were important back in the 90's.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 85,474 ✭✭✭✭JP Liz V1


    I thought he was big draw on the tours especially over here


  • Registered Users Posts: 11,611 ✭✭✭✭ERG89


    JP Liz V1 wrote: »
    I thought he was big draw on the tours especially over here

    Only Bret Hart was a draw on the overseas tours......or so he claimed in his book ;)


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 159 ✭✭Andrew Laeddis


    Hart was an INCREDIBLE draw in the Uk, Germany, Middle East etc. Carried the company abroad in the mid 90's


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,484 ✭✭✭Chain Smoker


    JP Liz V1 wrote: »
    Cena


    Now it is looking like Taker Vs. Cena could be for next year's WM, it would have been better with the streak still unbroken

    Cena was never even entertained as an option against Taker during the streak. I personally disagreed but I can see why they'd've been wary of what might happen to the Cena character by involving him with the streak 2008-2013 (e.g. would it put him in a position as a heel that'd be hard to back off from? would Taker beating Cena clean damage Cena's position as the all powerful top guy? would Taker beating in a somewhat iffy manner ruin the streak?).

    With Cena quite firmly in the stage of his career where just about everyone respects the hell out of him and with Taker in a position where a loss could actually signal his retirement (with his height and age, once he decides he's done it'll be near impossible for him to get in shape to come back), I think it has the potential to still be a pretty fantastic build.



    People were far too precious about the streak, guys like JR and Cornette taking the "in honour of all the Undertaker has done for the business, he should've been let retire undefeated"
    Fair f*cks to Vince for looking at the situation from a business perspective (at a point where Taker looked like he had absolutely no juice left in the tank with injuries over the previous 2-3 years, his age, etc), fair f*cks to Taker himself for having absolutely no issue with dropping it, and fair f*cks to him for opting to continue on on a busier schedule than anyone would expect of him if that's what he wants too.


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