Coming out of the atrocity that was WWE Super ShowDown, many fans (and perhaps the performers) believe Goldberg vs. The Undertaker would have been better left to the imagination. Officials had to have realized almost immediately that bringing the dream match to life in Saudi Arabia was a massive mistake.
When Goldberg and The Deadman originally went one-on-one in the 2017 Royal Rumble match, there was a genuine sense of excitement in the air because of how they had never crossed paths in WWE prior to that point. That said, fans weren’t clamoring to see them go head-to-head because they knew it could be a disaster at that stage of their careers.
WWE held off on booking the bout back then, only to advertise it as the main event for Super ShowDown this past Friday. Unsurprisingly, it did not deliver as promised and wound up being an embarrassment for both men as well as the company.
There was no need for Goldberg to ever wrestle again after he wrapped up his last run with WWE two years ago on such a high note.
In the span of six months, the former WCW icon became the biggest babyface on the Raw brand and beat Kevin Owens for the Universal Championship in record time at Fastlane 2017. He went on to have one of his best matches ever against Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania 33, a short-and-sweet affair that was everything it needed to be and then some.
Although “Da Man” left the door open for an in-ring return during Raw Talk the next night, that really should have been it for him, especially since he didn’t have anything more to prove. It was the perfect way for him to cap off his career, and yet he couldn’t help but come back to face ‘Taker in a bout that received virtually zero build.
Needless to say, Goldberg vs. Undertaker was added to the card solely because Super ShowDown needed a major attraction (the same way Crown Jewel featured Shawn Michaels’ in-ring return after eight years). WWE had no plans to do anything more with the “feud” than what we saw on Friday, but maybe they should.
The Phenom is no stranger to having matches that ultimately underwhelm. Regardless of how he does on shows such as this one, he’ll always resurface for the extra payday, not realizing that it pains longtime members of the WWE Universe to see him in the condition he’s currently in.
Goldberg, on the other hand, was clearly disappointed with how he fared against Undertaker based off what he tweeted after the event. It was the same sour taste he left in the mouths of fans after his WrestleMania 20 match with Lesnar, which he redeemed himself for years later with his 2016-17 comeback tour.
Bill Goldberg @Goldberg
Knocked myself out and thought I could finish…. love my fans…..but let u down. Everyone else that found “pleasure” ….. hope ur happy
Unlike Undertaker, Goldberg has that one last remarkable match left in him. Even at 52, he can hold his own and still has the ability to electrify an audience with his signature in-ring explosiveness and intensity.
Should he wrestle again, his opponent must be someone he’d be guaranteed to have a great match with. He and Undertaker couldn’t create the magic we were hoping for, so a Super ShowDown rematch isn’t ideal.
Rather, a younger star from the active roster would be the smartest option. Roman Reigns, for example, shares a similar background in football with Goldberg and is one of the biggest names in WWE today. If nothing else, The Myth vs. The Big Dog would get fans talking.
One lousy showing against Undertaker shouldn’t tarnish the memories Goldberg made with his short-lived stint a few years ago. Instead of riding off into the sunset at the peak of his popularity, he chose to risk ruining his storybook sendoff in agreeing to battle The Deadman, and the payoff wasn’t pretty.
He should be given the chance to make up for that match and end his career the way he wants. If WWE does allow him to lace up his boots again, it would make the most sense for SummerSlam or the next show in Saudi Arabia to host his retirement from the ring.
With more hype, a competent opponent and better circumstances than we saw at Super ShowDown, Goldberg’s last match can (and should) be a classic.
Graham Mirmina, aka Graham “GSM” Matthews, is an Endicott College alumnus and aspiring journalist. Visit his website,Next Era Wrestling, and “like” his officialFacebook pageto continue the conversation on all things wrestling.