This is our first of five columns about the Brock Lesnar and Undertaker PPV matches.
September 22, 2002 – Staples Center in Los Angeles, CA
Brock Lesnar: WWE Champion – won the belt at SummerSlam 2002 from the Rock
The Undertaker: Challenger – previously held the WWE Championship, but lost the title at Vengeance 2002 to the Rock
At King Of The Ring in 2002, Brock Lesnar beat Test and then Rob Van Dam to earn his spot at SummerSlam as the number one contender for the Undisputed Championship. At the same PPV, The Undertaker defended the belt against Triple H and won the match. The Rock interfered, though his interference didn’t determine the outcome.
At Vengeance, The Rock beat The Undertaker and Kurt Angle, who was added as the third man, to win the Undisputed Championship, setting up a showdown with Lesnar at SummerSlam. Lesnar faced RVD, but lost the match by disqualification.
Finally, at SummerSlam 2002, Lesnar defeated the Rock to win the Undisputed belt. In the weeks prior to Unforgiven, The Undertaker became the number-one contender, winning a three-way against Kurt Angle and Chris Benoit. There was also an angle in which Paul Heyman brought up Undertaker’s then-wife who was pregnant. Lesnar even creepily touched her pregnant belly. This was more blood-feud than title feud.
Brock Lesnar Vs The Undertaker At Unforgiven 2002
It resembled more of a fight than a traditional wrestling match, which based on the storyline (which is admittedly far outlandish than it necessarily had to be) was the right move. In any Lesnar/Taker match, it’s probably the right move.
I think what makes their feud so interesting is that it’s so disrespectful. The Undertaker, no matter if he’s a babyface or a heel, will break the rules against Lesnar. To be fair, this American Bad Ass version of the Undertaker wasn’t too shy to throw a low blow or two no matter who he faced.
This was also the first time Brock Lesnar was the smaller man in the ring. He had to sell more than he was used to, but athletically, he could take some huge bumps for the Undertaker. Both men were busted open, giving the match a rough and realistic feel.
Though, because it was the first match in the feud, which would be blown off at No Mercy, it ended in a no contest with a heated brawl after the match. This wasn’t the best match of their feud, but it was a fine first match in retrospect, setting up the table for the bigger match at the next PPV.