About a month ago, the end of an era took place as The Undertaker retired from WWE and all of professional wrestling after a loss at WrestleMania 33. While there has been no official word from the company or the man himself, it certainly does appear as if the time has come for him to hang it up. Since the moment he laid his gear in the middle of the ring, many have shared stories about The Undertaker, and one former ECW Champion had strong words about “The Deadman.”
Raven is known as the man who has some of the most combined championship reigns of any superstar who has ever been in ECW, WCW, and WWE. He was always seen as a loner or a leader of those no one else wanted when he guided his Flock.
The former ECW World Champion recently spoke with Sports Illustrated about a number of topics, including his new podcast, Paul Heyman, bullying, and his wrestling career. At one point, he was even asked about the recently retired Undertaker and how the legend was in the locker room.
When asked if The Undertaker was the “true locker room leader” in WWE, Raven had some strong words for the icon, but they were very complimentary.
“He was the locker room leader. I was loud, I was obnoxious, so I wasn’t his cup of tea, but we got along. There was no enmity. He was every bit the locker room leader everybody says, he was the authority. If he had been six inches shorter, he would have been the perennial world champion. But at 6-foot-10, he was relegated to the monster, “Creature Feature” matches. It wasn’t until near the end of his career when he finally started being able to show that he could actually work, but, by then, he wasn’t anywhere near the worker he was ten years before that. He was amazing.”
This is really no surprise, but it is always interesting to hear what other superstars think about the guys who are supposed to be “the authority.” It is even more interesting coming from a guy like Raven who was always seen as the guy who cared nothing about anyone, but for The Undertaker, he had a lot of respect.
That really shouldn’t come as much of a surprise as virtually everyone has always had respect for him. There are not many who have unkind things to say about him.
Raven went on to talk about Paul Heyman and how they ended on bad terms when he left ECW, but they’ve since patched things up. The former 27-time WWF/WWE Hardcore Champion also spoke on the bullying situation and said it has always existed in Vince McMahon’s company.
“There’s always been one, but it’s always been part of the business. It’s been part of the business, not just there, but everywhere. We’re not in the dark ages anymore, and bullying is bulls***, but Vince has a very immature sense of humor sometimes, and stuff like that makes him laugh. If you see silly comedy angles on the show–really silly stuff–then that’s from Vince. He is an amazing businessman, but he is eccentric. I guess you can be eccentric if you’re a billionaire, but he was eccentric long before he was a billionaire.”
The bullying situation in WWE has really been put in the spotlight lately with the departure of Mauro Ranallo and the stories of alleged issues between him and John Bradshaw Layfield.
No matter what anyone has heard about different wrestlers of different eras, it is almost the exact same thing always said about The Undertaker. No one ever seems to have anything negative to say about the future WWE Hall of Famer, and the fact that Raven spoke positively about him really does go a long way. Raven was always seen as one of the most hard-nosed loners in the business, but he made sure that respect is given where it is deserved.
[Featured Image by WWE]