Recently on Confessions Of The Hitman, two-time WWE Hall Of Famer Bret ‘Hitman’ Hart shared his thoughts on the first-ever King Of The Ring tournament and pay-per-view. Notably, Hart talked about being proud to be the inaugural winner, how the late great ‘Mr. Perfect’ Curt Hennig tried to make ‘The Hitman’ look good in their second round match together, and being given the day off following the pay-per-view. Also, Hart discussed who he thinks is the greatest big man in pro wrestling of all time.
According to Hart, he always loved the idea of The King Of The Ring tournament as a pay-per-view, and he is proud to be the first winner.
“I loved the concept of The King Of The Ring,” Hart acknowledged. “I always thought it was a really good concept for a pay-per-view. And I’ve always been very proud of the fact that I won the very first one that they did. I will say that when I had The King Of The Ring, I had three very good opponents: Razor Ramon was my first opponent, and then I had Curt Hennig, and then I had Bam Bam [Bigelow].”
Apparently, Hart looked at The King Of The Ring tournament as an opportunity to show off his pro wrestling chops, as he could work three different styles of match in one night.
“Wrestling three guys back to back, three quality wrestlers, it takes three different guys with three different kinds of stories,” Hart explained. “Everyone has their own style, and what I loved about that time period was that [King Of The Ring] was an example, or it was a situation, for me to prove maybe even to myself, but to any skeptics I had, like, how to have three great matches with three different guys back to back. Like, one after another. That’s over a full hour of wrestling. I’m sure I did over an hour, an hour-and-a-half of wrestling that night, which is pretty tough to do. I mean, an hour-long match is already as grueling as it is.”
During the show, Hart stated that he always enjoyed working with Mr. Perfect because they always had fun together due to their great chemistry. In Hart’s expert opinion, The King Of The Ring match was probably their best outing together, as well. Much like how the legendary ‘Rowdy’ Roddy Piper went out of his way to get Hart over at WrestleMania 8, Mr. Perfect went out of his way give ‘The Hitman’ a great match.
“So I beat Razor and went in against Mr. Perfect, which was so much fun to work with Perfect again because we always had such great chemistry and great matches,” Hart remembered. “And I think that is arguably one of our greatest matches we ever had at The King Of The Ring. And, again, it was guys who had a lot of respect for me going out of their way to help me get over because I just think they were guys in my camp that were behind me, and so, Curt went out of his way to give me a great match.”
In the finals of The King Of The Ring tournament, Hart faced off against Bigelow, who ‘The Excellence Of Execution’ considers to be the best big man in the history of pro wrestling. Hart described ‘The Beast From The East’ as safe and born to be a pro wrestler.
“[Bigelow] was such a great wrestler for his size,” Hart said. “He was. I always thought Bam Bam Bigelow was the best big man in wrestling. Like, he could do everything. He could do cartwheels. He could jump off the top rope and drop an elbow on you and never hurt you. He was always safe and such a pro, such a born wrestler. I’m sure when Bam Bam Bigelow was three or four years old, he could wrestle then. He was just born to be a wrestler, and I loved working with him. I loved the match he gave me.”
Hart noted that the day after King Of The Ring was the first and only time in WWE he ever got the day off for working so hard. ‘The Hitman’ indicated that he was so sore he could not get out of bed the next day.
“After that match [versus Bigelow], I remember after I won that match, they gave me the day off the next day. I remember I could hardly get out of bed. That was the only time, to my memory, that they said, ‘You worked so hard last night you can take today off.’ And I accepted that.” Hart added, “I was like, ‘Thank you. I will take the day off and I’ll enjoy every bit of it!'”
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