The Undertaker wrestled for the first time in 2019 back at the Super Showdown event in Saudi Arabia on June 7 and wound up in a now-infamous match with WWE Hall of Famer Bill Goldberg. Between Goldberg accidentally knocking himself out on a turnbuckle spot, a botched Jackhammer, a botched Tombstone and a botched piledriver counter, "The Deadman" wound up with a deeply disappointed look on his face as he closed out the event.
The 54-year-old veteran than surprisingly popped up on television again on Monday by saving Roman Reigns from another two-on-one attack from Drew McIntyre and Shane McMahon. It was announced roughly an hour later that he would team with "The Big Dog" to take on the two heels at the Extreme Rules pay-per-view on July 13.
So why is Undertaker back? Well the initial reports from Cageside Seats indicate the future Hall of Famer stuck around in order to help improve television ratings and build excitement for Extreme Rules. But in an interesting twist, Sports Illustrated's Justin Barrasso reported on Wednesday that Taker specifically requested McIntyre as somebody he wanted to work with.
"Sports Illustrated learned that McIntyre was on the short list of Undertaker's requested opponents following his debacle in Saudi Arabia against Bill Goldberg at the Super ShowDown," Barrasso wrote.
McIntyre has spoken incredibly highly of Undertaker in the past during interviews, saying he served as his inspiration during his early days as a wrestler.
"Undertaker, right up until his last day was working full time constantly, even when he was beat up, had fire in his eyes," McIntyre said in a recent interview with Planeta Wrestling. "If he couldn't walk, he was flying around and he was The Undertaker in every way. That was such an inspiration."
He stated in a separate interview with Sam Roberts that Undertaker helped him get a better understanding of in-ring psychology.
"It's like, when I was younger, the Undertaker is somebody who would give me advice, such as when I was 23, 24, 'Stop playing wrestler out there.' 'I don't understand! I'm not playing wrestler, I am a wrestler!' And as you get older, the light bulb starts to go off. I'm out there trying to memorize moves. One look in my eyes, I'm not in the moment, I'm clearly not feeling it. The crowd is clearly not feeling it. It took me a while before those light switches started going off. Once they start going off, that's when you start putting yourself into it. That's when you start getting over.