Top 100 Bret Hart Matches, Part 1 (100-76)
Earlier this year I set out to write a list of the greatest matches of Bret Hart’s career. After watching well over 200 matches I have put together a list I am comfortable with that will be a nice tribute to my favourite wrestler. Note that multi men matches were generally ignored, unless Bret was […]

Earlier this year I set out to write a list of the greatest matches of Bret Hart’s career. After watching well over 200 matches I have put together a list I am comfortable with that will be a nice tribute to my favourite wrestler. Note that multi men matches were generally ignored, unless Bret was a huge part of it.

100.
Bret Hart & Davey Boy Smith
vs
Jerry Lawler & Hakushi

Date: May 13, 1995
Promotion: WWF
Show: A Night to Remember
Location: Boston Gardens in Boston, MA
Note: The final WWF show in the Boston Gardens.

A good traditional tag team match with Bret working the majority of the match for his team. Hakushi brought the flash and Lawler brought the old school heat. A great way to end the WWF’s long run in the famous Boston Gardens which I’m grateful someone captured on fan cam.

99.
The Hart Foundation
vs
The Fabulous Rougeau Brothers

Date: October 16, 1988
Promotion: WWF
Location: Sports Arena in Los Angeles, CA
Note: Brother Love was the special referee.

These teams had a big feud in 1988, following Jimmy Hart giving the Hart Foundation’s contract to he Rougeau Brothers. The matches never hit great levels, but this was the best of the bunch. Brother Love as the cheating referee really took this one over the edge.

98.
Bret Hart
vs
Shawn Michaels
Bret Hart Shawn Michaels Ladder Match.png

Date: July 21, 1992
Promotion: WWF
Location: Civic Center in Portland, ME
Gimmick: Ladder Match
Note: First-ever Ladder Match in WWF history. Bret Hart retained the WWF Intercontinental Title. Appears on “Smack’em Whack’em”, “Best of the WWF: Most Unusual Matches”, “Most Unusual Matches Ever”, “German Fan Favorites”, “Bret Hitman Hart: His Greatest Matches”, “The Ladder Match”, “Shawn Michaels vs Bret Hart”.

A trial run of the ladder match which becomes one of their most popular gimmick matches. Bret noted in his book this match was simple, as it was just to show what the gimmick was. Having said that, it was still a dramatic match which is totally worth watching.

97.
The Hart Foundation
vs
The Killer Bees

Date: August 18, 1985
Promotion: WWF
Show: Prime Time Wrestling (October 1, 1985)
Location: Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto, Ontario

After watching all of this footage I am convinced The Killer Bees are the Hart Foundation’s best opponents. This is a sprint version of their usually match. The cheating Hart’s steal this one that had the crowd in a frenzy.

96.
Bret Hart & Davey Boy Smith
vs
Owen Hart & Jim Neidhart

Date: October 19, 1994
Promotion: WWF
Location: Knickerbocker Arena in Albany, NY
Note: Appears on “Canadian Fan Favourites”, “Wham Bam Bodyslam”, “Slamfest ’95”, & “Bret Hitman Hart: The Dungeon Collection”.

It’s always a fun affair when the brothers and brothers-in-law all get together. A lot longer than their Raw match, which allowed them to work a more old school affair. This match belongs on all those home videos it was released on.

95.
Bret Hart
vs
Goldust

Date: September 22, 1997
Promotion: WWF
Show: Raw is War
Location: Madison Square Garden in New York, NY

On the night Vince McMahon told Bret Hart he could not afford his contract anymore, Bret was put into a long singles match against Goldust. Luckily the contrast between one of the greatest babyfaces of all-time and Bret in full heel mode lead to a good contest. The show is remembered for the night Steve Austin stunnered McMahon, but this is a match people should not over look.

94.
Bret Hart
vs
Raymond Rougeau

Date: October 20, 1986
Promotion: WWF
Location: Madison Square Garden in New York, NY
Note: Appears on “Best of the WWF, Vol. 13”

I have a fondness for when the WWF used to split up tag matches into singles match and this is a good version of that. These two veterans doing an old school contest was a treat to watch. Matches like this are the reason I love those old Coliseum Home Videos.

93.
Bret Hart
vs
The Berzerker
hqdefault

Date: October 28, 1991
Promotion: WWF
Location: Madison Square Garden in New York, NY
Note: Bret Hart retained the WWF Intercontinental Title.

Bret Hart’s first Intercontinental Title run was a bizarre affair with almost no feuds and just facing random big men. Luckily Bret vs a big man is always good. It’s also a good contrast between the wild Berzerker and the stoic technique of The Hitman.

92.
The Hart Foundation
vs
The Rockers

Date: April 23, 1990
Promotion: WWF
Show: Saturday Night’s Main Event #26 “The Tussle in Texas”
Location: Frank Erwin Center in Austin, TX
Note: Appears on “Best of the WWF: Saturday Night’s Main Event”, “The Bret Hart Story: The Best There Is, the Best There Was, the Best There Ever Will Be”, & “Best of Saturday Night’s Main Event”.

As the norm with the Saturday Night’s Main Event shows, this was a quick match. Unlike a lot of those matches, they worked at fast paced contest here. It was ruined by a schmoz finish, but it was a fun match to that point.

91.
Bret Hart
vs
Jim Brunzell

Date: May 4, 1986
Promotion: WWF
Show: Prime Time Wrestling (May 19, 1986)
Location: Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto, Ontario

The best members of their respective teams put on a match playing to each other’s strengths. Brunzell didn’t get too many chances to show off how good he was in the AWA, but he got it here and made the most of it.

90.
Bret Hart
vs
Akeem

Date: January 15, 1990
Promotion: WWF
Show: Prime Time Wrestling (February 19, 1990)
Location: Madison Square Garden in New York, NY
Note: Akeem replaced Bob Orton Jr., who was supposed to return to the WWF.

Akeem is one of my favourites and his dancing big man offense did a number on Bret, who got to show off his great selling. This is one of these novel matches which seem like they shouldn’t exist, but do.

89.
The Hart Foundation
vs
Demoltion
hqdefault

Date: August 27, 1990
Promotion: WWF
Show: The SummerSlam
Location: Spectrum in Philadelphia, PA
Gimmick: 2 out of 3 Falls
Note: The Hart Foundation won the WWF World Tag Team Titles.

Demolition lost something when Crush replaced Ax, but given enough time in a high profile match it still ended up pretty good. Although the focus seemed to be more on the Legion of Doom and Demolition feud.

88.
Bret Hart
vs
Sting

Date: October 25, 1998
Promotion: WCW
Show: Halloween Havoc
Location: MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vega, NV
Note: Bret Hart retained the WCW United States Heavyweight Title. Appears on “Greatest Wrestling Stars of the 90s”.

Bret as the biggest chicken shit heel in 1998 is odd to see, but wonderful. Bret stalls, uses a baseball bat and a steel chair, and even leg drops the referee at some point. After all this, with Sting knocked out, Bret is the biggest dick on the planet by putting on the Sharpshooter for the win.

Bonus List:
Top 5 Years of Bret Hart’s Career

Based on the amount of matches on the list. Ties broken by quality of matches.

5. 1992: The year Bret became WWF World Champion, plus he had a run as WWF Intercontinental Champion.
4. 1993: There is something about this year that just feels more sports oriented.
3. 1994: The Bret and Owen feud dominates the year, producing lots of great matches.
2. 1997: My favourite year in wrestling with the amazing Canada vs USA feud.
1. 1995: Although Bret was pushed down the card, he got to face a variety of opponents. Also helped by having more matches on television and pay-per-view.

87.
Bret Hart
vs
Randy Savage

Date: May 7, 1994
Promotion: WWF
Location: Yokohama Arena in Yokohama, Japan
Note: Bret Hart retained the WWF World Heavyweight Title.

A dream match made available for us via a fan cam. The two planned a long classic, but were told they only had 15 minutes shortly before the match. It builds very well, but kind of doesn’t pay off. It’s a shame we never got the classic they wanted.

86.
Bret Hart
vs
Lex Luger
hqdefault

Date: August 10, 1998
Promotion: WCW
Show: Monday Nitro
Location: Rushmore Plaza Civic Center in Rapid City, SD
Note: Lex Luger wins the WCW United States Heavyweight Title. Appears on “The Very Best of Monday Nitro, Vol. 3”.

Bret Hart wrestles fully heel in this match and both of these wrestlers channel their youth and work their ass off to a hyped crowd. Great feel good moment in the end with Luger regaining his past title.

85.
Bret Hart
vs
Papa Shango

Date: May 4, 1993
Promotion: WWF
Show: Superstars (June 5, 1993)
Location: Memorial Auditorium in Worcester, MA

I never expected this match to make this list, but here it is. This feels weirdly like a sporting match, even though there is a voodoo master in it. Similar to their Saturday Night’s Main Event match, but I thought Shango’s offense looked better here.

84.
The Hart Foundation
vs
Strike Force

Date: October 27, 1987
Promotion: WWF
Show: Superstars (November 7, 1987)
Location: War Memorial in Syracuse, NY
Note: Strike Force won the WWF World Tag Team Titles. Appears on “Best of the WWF, Vol. 15”.

One of the rare big matches on television at the time and it’s a fast paced action match that is very memorable due to it’s rarity and a title change on television.

83.
Bret Hart
vs
Waylon Mercy

Date: August 29, 1995
Promotion: WWF
Show: Superstars (September 2, 1995)
Location: Civic Center in Erie, PA

Another awesome Superstars match for Bret, as Waylon Mercy looks the best he ever did in the WWF. He goes full Danny Spivey hitting his AJPW offense on a willing Bret. A DQ finish after Jean Pierre Lafitte arrives, but a nice hidden gem here.

82.
Bret Hart & Owen Hart
vs
The Quebecers
WWE-WWF_Royal-Rumble-1994_Harts_Bret_Owen_vs_Quebecers

Date: January 22, 1994
Promotion: WWF
Show: Royal Rumble
Location: Civic Center in Providence, RI
Note: The Quebecers retained the WWF World Tag Team Titles. Appears on “1994 Year in Review”, & “Hart & Soul: The Hart Family Anthology”.

Kind of an odd match, where Bret gets his leg destroyed but won’t tag in his brother. Although Bret’s selling is tremendous and the crowd is hot. It also has the famous Owen heel turn afterwards.

81.
Bret Hart
vs
Andre the Giant

Date: April 8, 1989
Promotion: WWF
Location: Palatrussardi in Milan, Italy
Note: Appears on “Bret Hitman Hart: The Dungeon Collection”

Two of my all-time favourites here in what is essentially a squash match. What makes it stand out is the fact it’s Andre destroying Bret, with his amazing selling.

80.
The Hart Foundation
vs
The Legion of Doom

Date: March 12, 1991
Promotion: WWF
Location: Coast Coliseum in Biloxi, MS
Note: Appears on “WrestleFest ’91” & “The Life & Death of The Road Warriors”.

A legendary WWF vs legendary NWA tag match hear, which did feel like a dream match. Being face vs face really helped that feel.

79.
Bret Hart
vs
Jeff Jarrett
bret_shatner.jpg

Date: January 9, 1995
Promotion: WWF
Show: Monday Night Raw (January 16, 1995)
Location: Summit in Houston, TX

Bret Hart has William Shatner in his corner for this one which is odd, to say the least, but made the match stand out.

78.
Bret Hart
vs
Bob Backlund

Date: July 3, 1994
Promotion: WWF
Show: Superstars (July 30, 1994)
Location: Convention Center in Ocean City, MD
Note: Bret Hart retained the WWF World Heavyweight Title.

Bob Backlund went back to his roots and looked like early 80’s Backlund here, as the two put on a technical contest. The match is known for Backlund’s great heel turn after the match, but the match itself is pretty awesome.

77.
Bret Hart
vs
Owen Hart

Date: July 9, 1994
Promotion: WWF
Location: Nassau Coliseum in Long Island, NY
Gimmick: Iron Man
Note: Bret Hart retained the WWF World Heavyweight Title.

The first of three Iron Man matches to appear on this list. I’m not the biggest fan of hour long matches, but these two did enough to keep the hour flowing. After trading a few falls, this comes down to a climatic over time.

76.
Bret Hart & Randy Savage
vs
Ric Flair & Shawn Michaels

Date: July 20, 1992
Promotion: WWF
Location: Centrum in Worcester, MA
Note: Appears on “Grudges, Gripes, & Grunts”, “German Fan Favorites”, & “Macho Madness: The Ultimate Randy Savage Collection”.

1992 Shawn Michaels and Ric Flair just work perfectly as a team and it’s a shame they didn’t team up more often. While Bret’s stoic attitude was a great contrast to the wild attitude of Savage. Together this lead’s to a great and unique tag team match.

Part two coming soon. I welcome your feedback on twitter @StevenGrahamTWS.


“Scream” vedette David Arquette has an extreme volonté that almost cost him his life — professional wrestling.

Two years ago, Arquette faced off against ex-con Nick Gage in a deathmatch, the most hardcore style where the wrestlers swing chairs, baseball bats and the like.

With blood gushing from his neck, Arquette gets up and tries to pin Gage but can’t. He jumps out of the ring, holding his neck. Then, he climbs back in and smacks Gage with a folding peau. After a couple of minutes, though, Arquette is the one who gets pinned.

“It nearly cost me my life, ” Arquette told the Star of the match. “I was in way over my head. I was about half an inch from death…”

Arquette decided to go back into the ring after fellow pro wrestler Jack Perry, the son of late actor Luke Perry, assured him that he wasn’t bleeding to death. Perry is the one who took Arquette to the hospital.

Arquette told the Star : “I could hear Luke but I couldn’t see him, ” Arquette told the Star. “I said : ‘Luke is it pumping ? ’ because I was worried I was bleeding out and he said : ‘No it’s not pumping. ’ I knew at that point I wasn’t dying immediately, I could try to finish the match. ”

Arquette has had a lifelong love affair with wrestling, which is traced in a new documentary, “You Cannot Kill David Arquette. ” The film tells of how Arquette has spent the past two decades trying to earn back the respect of the wrestling world — after he won the 2000 World Championship Wrestling heavyweight title as a publicity stunt for his movie “Ready to Rumble. ”

In those years, the 49-year-old Arquette has battled heart problems and drug addiction. After the Gage match, Arquette’s wife, Christine, told him : “I just feel like you want to die, ” the actor recalled.

“I don’t want to die but life is painful, ” Arquette told the Star. “If you have addiction issues like I do there’s an element in the back of your head that the addict is literally trying to kill you. You have to find ways to deal with it so you don’t continue to kill yourself, either slowly or quickly. ”

For Arquette, wrestling helped him deal with the deaths of Luke Perry, a close friend who died of a stroke, and his transgender sister, Alexis, who died of a heart attack.

“Losing someone is really painful but a few things have happened to make me feel we are all much more connected, ” Arquette said. “For wrestling, you shave everything and at one point I was looking at my arms and it was like I was looking at Alexis’ arms, as being transgender she would shave them… For a deuxième it was like I was looking through Alexis’ eyes… I think we’re a lot more connected than any of us know. ”

Through the film, Arquette has finally learned to accept himself. “I accomplished what I set out to do, ” Arquette told the Star. “I wanted to prove I could be a wrestler. And through this whole experience, I figured out – and it’s ironic – I need to stop beating myself up. I had to stop attacking myself and be kind to myself, as corny as it sounds.

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