Throwback Thursday: Origination of The Streak

Mark CallusThere have been many superstars and memorable moments that have solidified Memphis as the wrestling capital of the world.  Of all those athletes and accomplishments, I think it’s safe to say there is one that trumps them all.  He’s one of the most unique & intriguing sports entertainers in the history of pro wrestling and also holds the most prolific accomplishment imaginable.

Of course, I’m talking about none other than The Undertaker and his current WrestleMania streak of 21-0.

But before The Undertaker or The Streak, Memphis Wrestling fans knew him as The Master of Pain.  At 6’10” tall and near 300 pounds, he dominated the Memphis scene by defeating any and all comers put in his path.

Today’s Throwback Thursday rewinds us back exactly 25 years ago this week to the Memphis-based USWA on April 1st, 1989. During this episode, The Master of Pain gets his shot at the Unified World Heavyweight Championship held by Jerry “The King” Lawler.  Led to the ring by legendary manager Ronnie P. Gossett and current WWE manager Dutch Mantell (Zeb Colter), Master of Pain attempts to dethrone The King.

The Undertaker’s WrestleMania streak may not have been created in Memphis, but The Undertaker himself certainly was.  For over 25 years, The Undertaker has been at the pinnacle of professional wrestling – and it all started in Memphis, Tennessee.

Sunday night at WrestleMania XXX, The Phenom will attempt to extend his WrestleMania streak.  Former WWE & UFC Heavyweight Champion Brock Lesnar stands in The Undertaker’s way… or is he simply on-deck to be the next victim and Taker’s 22nd victory on the grandest stage of them all?

Fun Facts:   In 1990, The Undertaker debuted with WWE as Kane The Undertaker.  He is its most tenured performer, and the only remaining active competitor from the very first episode of WWE Raw in 1993.

Listen to former WWE creative writer Andrew Goldstein talk about The Undertaker and The Streak from a behind-the-scenes perspective.  Listen here.

“Throwback Thursday” is a weekly Memphis Wrestling post at

Dustin Starr is an active sports entertainer and regular contributor to MemphiSport and MSL. Follow him @DustinStarr.


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