Undertaker. Triple H. Wrestlemania. Hell in a Cell. Say no more.
It’s official and thus, we are now on the road to Wrestlemania 28. Yes, we have the WWE building toward a Chris Jericho-CM Punk feud with the title at stake. Yes, we have John Cena vs. The Rock in an icon vs. icon match. But the road to Wrestlemania got a huge boost tonight on Raw in a tremendous segment that made it official: Triple H will face the Undertaker in Hell in a Cell (HIAC).
I wrote a blog post a few days ago about the amazing storytelling that Triple H and Undertaker have been providing us with their promos and hype videos. We saw in last year’s build toward their match at Wrestlemania that when these two men say nothing, it speaks louder than any promo a current WWE superstar can cut.
Tonight, neither man was quiet and they came face-to-face in the ring with Undertaker baiting Triple H into a rematch. Triple H refused at every instance.
'Taker was practically begging for a match and you can tell, he was on edge. At one point, Undertaker screamed at Triple H to "shut up." The crowd gasped at the sight of Undertaker showing such emotion.
Undertaker continued with his mission to try and get Triple H to accept a match. 'Taker called him a coward, but Triple H didn’t budge. The crowd was oooohing and ahhhhhing at every one of Undertaker’s attempts. The nail in the coffin was when Undertaker said Triple H wouldn’t face him because deep down, Triple H knows he is not as good as his buddy Shawn Michaels.
The suit and tie came off and Triple H accepted the match raising his voice and showing energy that has been absent for weeks, months. The Game then took it a step further heeding Undertaker’s advice that this year’s match needs to “end it all.” Triple H demanded the match be HIAC, the most barbaric match in the history of the WWE.
Undertaker accepted by patting Triple H on the shoulder, much like Triple H did a few weeks ago when he refused the rematch. ‘Taker then walked out to a rock song, which was completely out of character. By the way, Undertaker wore his gothic robe with a hood, not allowing us a look at his haircut. ‘Taker’s blue light engulfed the ring for the entire segment, making it difficult to get a peek.
As for the HIAC match, it makes sense. This match is usually reserved to end the mother of all feuds. In the 24 HIAC matches, Undertaker and Triple H have been in 17 of them.
The only time they have ever been opponents in HIAC was at Armageddon 2000. It was a six-man match for the WWE title that also featured Kurt Angle, Steve Austin, The Rock and Rikishi. Undertaker tossed the 400-poung Rikishi off the cell onto a truck below. It is one of many classic Undertaker moments inside the demonic cell.
Undertaker appeared in the first three HIAC matches, including the now famous 1998 King of the Ring match against Mick Foley. The match became an instant classic when ‘Taker threw Foley off the top of the cell onto an announcer’s table. Foley would get back up and climb to the top of the cell, only for Undertaker to chokeslam him through the roof of the cell. It was a match that defined the “Attitude Era” and made Mick Foley a household name.
Triple H has had his moments in HIAC. At Now Way Out in 2000, Triple H met Foley for the WWE title. The stipulation going into the match was if Foley lost, he would have to retire. Foley was at the height of his popularity. Triple H defeated Foley on his way to becoming the most dominate WWE star in the business at the time.
The only other time we have seen a HIAC match at Wrestlemania was in 1999, when Undertaker defeated The Big Boss Man. The match itself is not very memorable. The post-match hanging of Big Boss Man is what fans remember most.
Let’s remember, Undertaker and Triple H have not been very active in the ring since last year’s match. Ring rust is probably a concern on the creative team’s mind, hence another good reason for the match. The HIAC match eliminates all mat wrestling and technique. This is a brute match and chances are, there will be blood. Lots of it.
Enjoy the next 41 days of hype with these two men telling one heck of a story. I’ll admit, I was not so excited for the match. It’s the build and storytelling that has me tuning in every week to Raw. With HIAC lurking at Wrestlemania, I say let’s fast forward the next 41 days and get to the match.