Your point :
"The streak isn't about who ends it these days, it's more about how close someone can get to ending it."
That sort of reaffirms my position. How can you get any closer than HBK did? He had TWO shots at The undertaker and came damn close to beating him. Watch last years match again, especially Taker's selling at the end. You can't get any closer than shawn did without actually beating him.
As for the notion of it being a "foregone conclusion". After 18 Wrestlemanias in which the Undertaker has wrestled in and won, it stands to reason he is going to win again. If they are going to let the streak remain undefeated, which seems to be the concensus in the wrestling fan community, then the result of the match is already set in stone. I was not referring to what would happen POST match, simply the result (i.e. winner) is going to be UT. That, to me, is boring, The match it self may be spectacular, but the result is boring. If everyone knows the result of your MAINEVENT then what suspense is there? It's like going to see a movie you already know the ending of. Thats why, when the result is known ahead of time, it's called a SPOILER.... because it SPOILS the movie. In this case, "knowing" UT is going to win "SPOILS" the match. That's why I don;t think it IS a foregone conclusion that he will win. That's why i think someone can and will beat him. And thats why I think HHH will win. UT barely survived the last two by HBK. Those matches were as good as it gets from those two. What more is there to do other than someone finally beating Taker? How do you top those performances? HHH wins.
i, personally, don't think "The streak" is really as impressive as it's made out to be. We are talking about scripted entertainment. It's not as if he actually beat these guys or anything. It's all "creatives" choice that The Dead Man doesn't lose.
I , too, would like to see him "pass the torch" as it were, but the point made about there being a legitimate wrestler to pass it to is correct. I suppose we could argue the merits of a number of guys. Tops on my list is CM Punk. I just think he is the total package. But I digress.
As far as this match goes, I am really feeling like HHH is going to do it. I think it's a case of "one to many" for Taker.
One interesting aspect is HBK's involvement. It would not surprise me in the least if he did interfere and cost HHH the match. Obviously it's no holds barred (great movie btw.) so the interference wouldn't allow for a win or loss by DQ. I think that their having made it NHB is an indication of what may happen. i.e. HBK.
In one scenario, and it seems to me the most likely, HBK "supports" HHH's attempt to beat Taker at Wrestlemania but, being the HBK we all know, cannot allow what should have been his to be HHH's. namely, being the one to end the streak. The HHH/Undertaker "feud" has lasted, what, a month? with a lackluster buildup? Shawn's feud with Taker was over the course of more than a year and "cost" him his career. It was an "obsession" (kayfabe) and to have lost, not only the match but his "livelihood" to UT, and then to see his best friend go out there and potentially "steal his thunder" for lack of a better term, is more than enough motivation for HBK to "get involved". What that involvement entails is a matter of conjecture, but the point is made. Shawn would have reason to get involved physically with this match.
However, outside of any HBK involvement, there is simply HHH. He has his motivations. He stated so last night on RAW (before punking the ever loving hell out of DiBiase. Great for him to get a push though.).
I think this years Wrestlemania is going to have more than one shocker (not THAT shocker). The biggest one of all is when HHH's hand is raised.