Even though the Dead Man himself has yet to officially comment on his status, the ending of WrestleMania 33 — where the Undertaker, after being beaten by Roman Reigns, removed his gloves, trenchcoat and hat and left them in the center of the ring — sure as hell felt like a retirement ceremony. Photos circulated at the end of Mania showing Taker’s garments still stacked up neatly in the ring long after the arena had cleared out. So where did his ring gear end up?
According to the latest episode of Jerry “The King” Lawler’s Dinner With The King podcast, the ring gear was flown back to WWE headquarters — but not before a small detour, as Lawler tells his co-host Glenn Moore (starting at 21:30):
“If you remember, it was — I certainly don’t blame them — it was almost like they feared a Tom Brady Super Bowl jersey incident. The Undertaker’s gear was all brought to the WrestleMania after-party, and a guard was placed in front of the gear until they could get it on the plane the next day to [WWE] headquarters in Stamford, Connecticut.
There was a guard there, absolutely. They had the FBI looking for Tom Brady’s Super Bowl jersey and they estimated that thing was worth a half a million dollars Just imagine if somebody had the entire ring gear of the Undertaker that he wore throughout his career and in his very last match. It would be invaluable. That’s why there was a guard for it at the after-party.”
“I’m sure the guy was armed,” says Moore, to which the ever-quick King cracks, “You’re probably thinking they should have put it in an armored car, but after watching Raw last night, even an armored car wouldn’t be safe with Braun Strowman around.” (#watchtheproduct)
Honestly, considering how good as the WWE video crew is, I hope we get a WWE 24: Taker’s Ring Gear episode to see just how exactly it was handled (I guarantee white gloves were worn) and just what the path to its final resting place was like. But the big question is why was Taker’s ring gear on display at the after-party and not, y’know, back in the Dead Man’s possession?
“Because the Undertaker did not take his gear with him,” Lawler stresses. “He left it there, he left it to the WWE Universe. He left it in the ring. I’m sure down the line, next year at WrestleMania Axxess, that gear will be on display prominently just the same way it was stacked up at the end of the match by the Undertaker… I’m sure it is under lock and key now at WWE headquarters and will only be brought out once a year at WrestleMania time.”
As if we all needed another reason to go to Axxess, here you go.