Opinion: The Undertaker vs. Sting - A match that will never happen
Disclaimer: The opinions are that of the writer alone and do not necessarily reflect Sportskeeda's views.
The Undertaker and Sting, two of the biggest icons in the professional wrestling business never had the opportunity to face each other. Both had similar dark gimmicks, both have been known to play mind games with their opponents. It would have been a very interesting contest. It is one of those matches that the fans have yearned for desperately for two almost decades. But it never happened.
Where The Undertaker always remained loyal to Vince McMahon’s WWE and never signed with WCW, Sting remained one of those wrestlers that Vince McMahon failed to hire after the acquisition of WCW in 2001. The Undertaker went on to gain legendary status in WWE and Sting became Jeff Jarret’s TNA’s Hall of Fame Inductee in 2012.
When Steve 'Sting' Borden finally signed with the WWE in 2014 rumours were rife that finally, the biggest match in professional wrestling’s history would take place. But instead of fighting The Deadman, The Icon fought Triple H at WrestleMania 31 in a losing effort whereas The Undertaker beat Bray Wyatt. Following his loss to Triple H, Sting fought Seth Rollins at Night of Champions for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship.
Had Sting won that match he would have become the only wrestler to win the WWE, NWA, WCW and TNA world championships. However, a legitimate neck injury during the match which resulted in cervical spinal stenosis ended Sting’s in-ring career. Sting was the first member of the WWE Hall of Fame Class of 2016.
Sting’s desire for a match with The Undertaker is an open secret. He has publicly expressed his wish to come out of retirement and have a match with The Phenom. The 60-year-old has not wrestled since his career-ending fight in September 2015 but time and time again he has made it known that he would only come back for a match with The Undertaker, saying:
“I mean, everyone knows who it would be. Taker, he’s the only guy I’d come out of retirement for now. No one else. We could just never get it together to make it happen. When I started talking to WWE he was booked with Brock and then I did the deal with Triple H and he had another feud going on at the time, so it was just one of those things we couldn’t make happen. But I don’t regret it not happening either, I mean I got to face Triple H at my first WrestleMania and then wrestle Seth for the world title, so I didn’t do too badly out of that deal. But yeah, now, the only person I’m getting back in the ring for is Taker.”
As fans have been criticizing WWE’s product getting stale and with tough competition from the new AEW, WWE has been trying to improve its ratings. The signing of Paul Heyman and Eric Bischoff as Executive Directors of Raw and SmackDown respectively is a clear indication of that. WWE has been trying to spice things up and gain the attention of its lost fans.
Recently, WWE posted a “reimagined video” that discussed what would have happened if The Undertaker had gone to WCW and faced Sting. Many considered it as a hint towards a future match between the two legends.
WWE’s deal with Saudi Arabia for wrestling events there has proved to be a very profitable venture for the company. The huge amount of money that WWE makes has made it possible for it to bring back legends for ‘one more match’. Such matches between the legends have been forgettable. The returns of Shawn Michaels and Goldberg at the Gulf country’s events were unmemorable.
After the recent lacklustre match between The Undertaker and Goldberg at WWE Super ShowDown, WWE might want to refrain from any matches between two aged warriors. Though The Undertaker has come back immediately to wash the forgettable memories of his match with Goldberg, considering Sting’s age and spinal stenosis the WWE doctors would never clear him to enter the ring again for a match. The Wrestling Observer Newsletter also noted that this match is not in the cards:
“From those on the inside, the belief is that the company would never risk Sting taking a bump given he never had surgery on his neck. He’s a 60-year-old man with spinal stenosis and the idea of him wrestling is not even broached”.
It was just to create some chatter and gain the attention of the fans. It was just to create some hype and nothing more. It is a match that should have happened a long ago. It will never happen at any time in the future and must live in our imagination.