Credit: Jamie Neill
It was amazing to see Bret live since, aged 29, I’ve grown up through his career, from seeing Survivor Series II in 1988 onwards. It didn’t bother me but he mentioned being in England almost 10 times, instead of Scotland, but he did highlight the love he had for being in the UK, the passion of the fans whilst he was a wrestler etc.
– On Triple H – Bret said he’s a great worker but that sometimes he didn’t know what to do in the ring & could be repetitive. He used himself & Shawn Michaels as wrestler’s who could try to add in unique moments during matches to take the crowd in another direction or guessing. An example was kicking the timekeeper at Wrestlemania 12 during the Iron Man Match.
– He never wrestled Jake ‘The Snake’ Roberts but credited him with being a great wrestler & wrestling mind.
– He feels that Daniel Bryan perhaps doesn’t have the size that the bosses want, despite his talent. He used his era as WWF Champion circa 1993 as a transitional time where it wasn’t just the biggest guys that could be the face of the company & the crowd wanted something different, where it was about the wrestling. Bret admitted that guys like Hogan, Warrior & Andre were amazing to see in person at airports, canteens, shopping malls etc & Hulkamania was unbelievable to experience, but that he thought talent can’t be stopped.
– If he could book Wrestlemania 31’s main event it would be Bryan vs Punk in an Iron Man Match.
– He wishes Warrior & Hogan had helped make Bret Hart in 1993 like other guys did for them.
– In 1996, he & Vince agreed on a match with him & Shawn for Wrestlemania 13 where he would break Shawn’s ankle & win the title back & turn heel. Everyone loved it but Shawn hated it & didn’t see his title run going that way. He told Bret to humiliate him on the mic, but didn’t sell it backstage…instead he acted upset & angry & ruined the angle because nobody was supposed to know it was all setup. Everyone believed they had backstage heat, so they were going to play on it, but it didn’t work.
– When asked what the worst thing about WCW was he said ‘from the 1st day’. He said starting as a referee was stupid – he was coming off a hot year (1997) with victories in the Rumble, over Austin, Undertaker, knocking out Vince McMahon & the Montreal Screwjob, and despite what Eric Bischoff says (about him losing his spark), he was full of vengeance and energy to make WCW work, but the politics held him back & they didn’t have a vision like Vince.
– Couldn’t speak more highly of Randy Savage & Undertaker for their professionalism, leadership, work rate etc.
– Said that Vince apparently hates Tag Team wrestling but that he hopes it get a focus on the card.
– Told a funny story about how he & Austin sat planning their Wrestlemania match on the ring apron, and were disappointed to be wrestling each other so soon after Survivor Series 1996…but that Bret suggested blading Steve since he had never did it before. He told Steve that when he had the blade, he wouldn’t hold back, and as he went to do it, Steve shouted ‘maybe we shouldn’t’ and it was too late. They never told anyone of what they did or they would have been fined, but thinks it helped make the match so special & benefitted Austin’s career.
Now, the most special part of me was when he spoke of his stroke. He knows that his match with Vince at Wrestlemania 26 was ‘a bit of a farce’ but that years earlier, Vince phoned him immediately after he came around in hospital after his stroke. Vince told him he was a fighter & would be ok.
(At this point Bret had to pause for about 20 seconds, visibly upset, and it was very emotional)
He mentioned that he didn’t believe he would walk out the hospital so when he got the news about coming back to WWE & wrestling Vince, running up his home stairs in Hawaii…seemed impossible just after his stroke.
Bret got a long ovation at this stage.
My meet & greet was awesome – I told him I wish he had been able to wrestle Kurt Angle & he confirmed that his only wrestling dream had been him waking up whilst having Angle in a headlock. I told him I had represented my country in sports in the Arrowhead Pond, Anaheim where he wrestled Shawn at Mania 12 & he praised me. Finally I joked that the girl I’m seeing – who is new to wrestling – had tapped to the Sharpshooter and he replied ‘well so every girl should’.
Amazing night with a living legend & PSI Events are doing great in bringing our heroes to the UK.