Reason The Undertaker Missed WWE SmackDown On FOX Debut Revealed

Advertised Deadman was absent from Friday's show.

The Undertaker SmackDown
WWE

Despite featuring prominently as part of WWE's promotional bombardment for SmackDown's big debut on FOX this past Friday, The Undertaker was absolutely nowhere to be seen in Los Angeles' Staples Center - leaving many in attendance bitterly disappointed.

It later emerged that The Phenom was in the building as planned, but for whatever reason wasn't used. Hours after his no-show, the absentee posted to social media - with the ensuing discourse revealing his apparent reason for missing out.

'Taker submitted a relatively anodyne Instagram pic of his last appearance on blue brand, with the caption "20 years of #SmackDown. Tonight @wweonfox." Inevitably, a fan questioned why he didn't pop his head through the curtain, to which the veteran replied, "I was told I wasn't needed..."

Naturally, a series of sycophantic replies followed.

It's hard to know if The Undertaker is being straight or sardonic here - an ellipsis'll do that. If it's the former, it's quite remarkable that WWE wouldn't unleash one of their most decorated and revered stars on a night when they were pulling everything out the bag to pop an eye-catching debut rating.

It could be a rare case of restraint; if the company blow their entire load now, what's left for the future? Unlike most company legends, 'Taker remains relatively in-house - and they can probably rely on him popping a date down the line, unlike say, The Rock - who opened the show.

The Undertaker is currently scheduled to star at Crown Jewel later this month.

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Editorial Team
Editorial Team

Benjamin was born in 1987, and is still not dead. He variously enjoys classical music, old-school adventure games (they're not dead), and walks on the beach (albeit short - asthma, you know). He's currently trying to compile a comprehensive history of video game music, yet denies accusations that he purposefully targets niche audiences. He's often wrong about these things.