Bret Hart is widely regarded as one of the best technical wrestlers in the history of the business. The attention to detail he displayed in the ring was also evident backstage.
Hart says his meticulous and intricate approach to putting together matches earned him the trust of his fellow wrestlers and Vince McMahon. In fact, Hart says McMahon wanted few details ahead of one of the biggest matches of Hart’s career.
Bret Hart defended the WWF Intercontinental Championship against the British Bulldog at SummerSlam 1992. It was the main event in front of a reported crowd of more than 80,000 fans at London’s Wembley Stadium.
“Before I was ever champion, most wrestlers would sit down and go to me, ‘What are we doing?’ And I would tell them what we’re doing,” Hart told CBC Radio’s Q podcast. “And I was a guy that was [that way] even with Vince McMahon. When I think of wrestling the British Bulldog at Wembley Stadium. I remember telling Vince. I said, ‘Do you want me to tell you the ending?’ And he goes, ‘Don’t tell me the ending! I want to watch it.'”
Bret Hart lost the Intercontinental Title to the British Bulldog on that night. Months later, Hart would reach a new career-high by winning the WWF Championship for the first time.
The SummerSlam 1992 main event is a bittersweet memory today. The British Bulldog died in 2002 at the age of 39. He died from a heart attack. It was later attributed to the use of steroids and painkillers.
“Watching what happened with my brother-in-law, the British Bulldog, was really sad,” Hart lamented. “To see him go down the way he did. Some people are more vulnerable than others and he was one of those guys. He was just very vulnerable to that and it brought him down and he could never get off. And it proved to be his demise. And that’s happened to quite a few. But I just – I don’t think of myself as better than them necessarily. Just that I was more careful.”
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit CBC Radio’s Q podcast with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
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