The defending NBA Champion Cleveland Cavaliers received a special visit before Tuesday’s tipoff, welcoming The Undertaker into the Quicken Loans Arena.
Dressed in full Undertaker attire (now with long hair), “The Deadman” greeted the likes of James Jones, Chris Andersen and several others as Cleveland prepared to take on the New York Knicks in front of a home crowd.
According to Jason Lloyd of the Akron Beacon Journal, Undertaker visited the Cavs because NBA Finals MVP LeBron James wore his t-shirt prior to Game 5 of the NBA Finals earlier this year. Down three games to one against the Golden State Warriors and on the brink of elimination, many believe James wore the shirt to signify that his team was not yet dead.
James and the Cavs wound up taking the series in a historic come-from-behind performance.
Cleveland point guard Kyrie Irving furthered the team’s loose ties to The Undertaker by producing a shirt featuring an animated version of himself wearing “The Deadman’s” gear with “Ankletaker” written beneath.
This is the Ankletaker graphic. It's beyond incredible. pic.twitter.com/VBsqGYChlX
— Scott @ WFNY (@WFNYScott) October 6, 2016
Also of note is Kevin Love’s fascination with WWE in the past, previously donning WWE championship belts and Stone Cold Steve Austin t-shirts after the team’s win.
Two champs pic.twitter.com/PSYxQwxEhF
— Jason Lloyd (@JasonLloydABJ) October 25, 2016
According to Lloyd, James and Undertaker had yet to cross paths as of 30 minutes before tipoff.
Undertaker has not been seen inside of WWE’s squared circle since a WrestleMania 32 match against Shane McMahon. At the tail-end of his pro wrestling career, there’s no word on when the 51-year-old entertainer may grace the ring once more.