W-O reader Liam Johnson attended the Evening with Bret Hart 2018 UK tour stop in Oldham, Greater Manchester which was held at The Queen Elizabeth Hall and sent in the following report.
– Bret said that wrestling in the UK helped make him a more well rounded performer. Johnny Saint, who just recently was announced as the WWE UK General Manager, and Marty Jones (both from Oldham) were invited on stage by the host Dean Ayass.
– Marty mentioned that Bret always had a lot of respect for the business, and while “gimmick men come and go”, the actual decent workers will keep professional wrestling going no matter what the era is.
– Marty said that one thing that “boils his piss” today is how certain performers treat championship belts, throwing them into the ring with complete disregard and allowing them to be bashed about.
– Dynamite Kid’s two nephews stood up in the crowd and were acknowledged.
– Bret said he refuses to attend the Hall Of Fame now because the likes of the Rock n’ Roll Express are in there before Davey Boy Smith, Dynamite Kid and Owen Hart. Bret said he had no problem with Ricky Morton or Robert Gibson as people but they never even made it to the WWF and weren’t considered big enough stars in their day to join the organization.
– Said that Vince McMahon was lucky that Ted Turner gave Eric Bischoff the keys to WCW as Bischoff couldn’t even get a key in the hole. Bret basically said that because Bischoff had no idea how to run a wrestling promotion, that’s why WCW is no longer there and is why Vince now has a monopoly.
– Bret said if he could ever have one more match with anyone, it would be Curt Hennig.
– Thought that something strange was going on back at the One Night Only PPV in Birmingham, England back in 1997. Bret was champion and faced the Undertaker in what turned out to be a classic match but neither Bret nor Taker were even on the poster for the event and the match was hardly even advertised. Bret suspected that Shawn Michaels and Triple H were out to sabotage the Harts and were in Vince McMahon’s ear. Hence why Davey Boy Smith also jobbed away the European Championship to Shawn on the same card.
– Bret actually said he was good friends with Shawn in the early 90s but this all changed by the mid part of the decade. Bret didn’t put that much blame on Shawn for the Montreal Screwjob and saw Triple H as more of the instigator at the time.
– Bret put Steve Austin over and mentioned how even though Austin would most likely have been a huge star regardless of whether Bret was around, his submission match at WrestleMania 13 was a true classic and is one of the most realistic matches combining the best of pro wrestling and elements of realism from UFC.
– Bret said that even though his “I quit” match with Bob Backlund wasn’t great and the whole concept was bad, that match was probably his biggest payday for working a single pay-per-view. Bret also put over Bob Backlund by saying what a decent person he is.
– Bret buried Goldberg. Before Bret wrestled Goldberg at Starrcade ‘99, Bret said to him, “whatever you do, don’t hurt me”. Of course Goldberg’s stiff kick to the head ended Bret’s career. Bret blamed the WCW hierarchy for not reprimanding Goldberg after he kept hurting people. It was often a case of the hierarchy rewarding Goldberg after he was hurting people and saying “good job”.