Bret Hart: It Was Time For A Change

Bret Hart is arguably the best storyteller to ever don a pair of wrestling boots. His exquisite technical prowess and pink and black in-ring attire are a hallmark of his legendary career. However, despite Hart’s intense portrayal of an anti-American heel in 1997, it wouldn’t have cut the mustard in 1998.

If the Montreal Screw job had never happened (November 1997) and Hart never went to WCW, WWE’s Attitude Era would have still been the most famous period in modern professional wrestling. The anti-establishment bravado spearheaded by “Stone Cold” Steve Austin made the era a time of reinvention.

Austin was already tailor-made for the highly volatile TV-14 product. Everyone else, however, charged their stripes to match the contemporary look of the times. If Bret Hart had stayed on, he would undoubtedly have to change as well.

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Bret ‘Hitman’ Hart: A Look Inside The Pink & Black Attack

Artwork by NS-Designer

Bret “Hitman” Hart is one of the best technical wrestlers of all time. I don’t even know how anyone could make a list of Bret Hart matches because he never had a bad match. Everyone has their opinion on what matches make a list like this. My list is based on match caliber as compared to career importance. Let’s take a look at the five greatest matches of the excellence of execution.

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Wrestling Flashback: Bret Hart vs. Steve Austin

Survivor Series 11/17/96
Madison Square Garden
New York, New York

“If you liked Tyson vs. Holyfield, your gonna love this” Jim Ross

The quote by Jim Ross helped set the tone for the Bret Hart vs. Steve Austin encounter as they engaged in an intense stare down, followed by a pair of middle fingers by Austin before the opening bell. Everyone remembers their match at Wrestlemania 13. The Survivor Series bout gets lost in the shuffle when talking about the great matches of this business. The story leading up to and during the match was simple and effective.

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