Wrestling Forum banner

Bret Hart the biggest star besides the big 3?

14001 Views 212 Replies 86 Participants Last post by  NatureDog
Legit. Aside from Hogan, Rock, Austin ? He may be. He was always bigger in the States than HBK and Taker in the 90s. Even when Vince tried other things, the one constant was Bret, he kept going back to him over and over (before the attitude era, and titles switched like crazy, he was the only 5 time world champ along with Hogan). All the kiddies these days who appreciate work rate over foolish gimmicks, need to understand he was the very first to do it on skill alone, he paved the way. He laid the foundation for people like HBK, Benoit, and Angle to have success in the main event scene.

He was far bigger in Canada and internationally than almost anyone, many wrestling folk have said he was as big, if not bigger overseas than Hogan. That is a massive accomplishment that sometimes goes overlooked.

When his DVD was released in 05', it outsold every other DVD WWE ever did.

His name, for better or worse, is still associated with perhaps the most infamous match of all time.

He is still the only wrestle to appear on The Simpson's, when it was in its heyday, and one of the most cultural and dominate shows on TV.

He is certainly more of a household name than someone like Shawn Micheals or Eddie etc...who most wouldnt know unless they at least casually watched WWE. Bret Hart seems to be more causally known for sure.

His book outsold HBKs and Flairs and many others. It all counts.

Then theres the fact he hasnt really wrestled in a WWE ring since 1997, or had a real run I mean, 24 years! Yet his name constantly comes up in amongst wrestling legend. He didnt have the benefit of an additional 8 year run for a whole new generation like HBK, yet still seems to be considered a tier above to many. Even younger fans of the 2000s. I cant even imagine if he could have had 5 or 6 more years and could wrestle Rock, Jericho, Angle, Eddie etc...he might very well have been undoubtedly known as the best ever then.

His matches age like fine wine. In a world of no selling and flips, his excellent work and the absolute mastercraft of this sport almost seems even more appreciated now. He was a true artist.

What a fuckin legend!
141 - 160 of 213 Posts

· Registered
Joined
·
82 Posts
Legit. Aside from Hogan, Rock, Austin ? He may be. He was always bigger in the States than HBK and Taker in the 90s. Even when Vince tried other things, the one constant was Bret, he kept going back to him over and over (before the attitude era, and titles switched like crazy, he was the only 5 time world champ along with Hogan). All the kiddies these days who appreciate work rate over foolish gimmicks, need to understand he was the very first to do it on skill alone, he paved the way. He laid the foundation for people like HBK, Benoit, and Angle to have success in the main event scene.

He was far bigger in Canada and internationally than almost anyone, many wrestling folk have said he was as big, if not bigger overseas than Hogan. That is a massive accomplishment that sometimes goes overlooked.

When his DVD was released in 05', it outsold every other DVD WWE ever did.

His name, for better or worse, is still associated with perhaps the most infamous match of all time.

He is still the only wrestle to appear on The Simpson's, when it was in its heyday, and one of the most cultural and dominate shows on TV.

He is certainly more of a household name than someone like Shawn Micheals or Eddie etc...who most wouldnt know unless they at least casually watched WWE. Bret Hart seems to be more causally known for sure.

His book outsold HBKs and Flairs and many others. It all counts.

Then theres the fact he hasnt really wrestled in a WWE ring since 1997, or had a real run I mean, 24 years! Yet his name constantly comes up in amongst wrestling legend. He didnt have the benefit of an additional 8 year run for a whole new generation like HBK, yet still seems to be considered a tier above to many. Even younger fans of the 2000s. I cant even imagine if he could have had 5 or 6 more years and could wrestle Rock, Jericho, Angle, Eddie etc...he might very well have been undoubtedly known as the best ever then.

His matches age like fine wine. In a world of no selling and flips, his excellent work and the absolute mastercraft of this sport almost seems even more appreciated now. He was a true artist.

What a fuckin legend!
This is a good take. Bret helped usher in the era of smaller, better wrestlers as World Champs. He made Those around him better. And you’re right, his matches aren’t out of place compared to today. I still enjoy watching him against Shawn, Austin, Perfect and Bullfog. Hell, he even made Kevin Nash and Sif look like decent workers
 

· Registered
Joined
·
681 Posts
Legit. Aside from Hogan, Rock, Austin ? He may be. He was always bigger in the States than HBK and Taker in the 90s. Even when Vince tried other things, the one constant was Bret, he kept going back to him over and over (before the attitude era, and titles switched like crazy, he was the only 5 time world champ along with Hogan). All the kiddies these days who appreciate work rate over foolish gimmicks, need to understand he was the very first to do it on skill alone, he paved the way. He laid the foundation for people like HBK, Benoit, and Angle to have success in the main event scene.

He was far bigger in Canada and internationally than almost anyone, many wrestling folk have said he was as big, if not bigger overseas than Hogan. That is a massive accomplishment that sometimes goes overlooked.

When his DVD was released in 05', it outsold every other DVD WWE ever did.

His name, for better or worse, is still associated with perhaps the most infamous match of all time.

He is still the only wrestle to appear on The Simpson's, when it was in its heyday, and one of the most cultural and dominate shows on TV.

He is certainly more of a household name than someone like Shawn Micheals or Eddie etc...who most wouldnt know unless they at least casually watched WWE. Bret Hart seems to be more causally known for sure.

His book outsold HBKs and Flairs and many others. It all counts.

Then theres the fact he hasnt really wrestled in a WWE ring since 1997, or had a real run I mean, 24 years! Yet his name constantly comes up in amongst wrestling legend. He didnt have the benefit of an additional 8 year run for a whole new generation like HBK, yet still seems to be considered a tier above to many. Even younger fans of the 2000s. I cant even imagine if he could have had 5 or 6 more years and could wrestle Rock, Jericho, Angle, Eddie etc...he might very well have been undoubtedly known as the best ever then.

His matches age like fine wine. In a world of no selling and flips, his excellent work and the absolute mastercraft of this sport almost seems even more appreciated now. He was a true artist.

What a fuckin legend!
As much as I love HBK and Undertaker over Bret I would have to say overall yes you are right. Its unfortunate he couldnt work things out with Shawn and Vince back then and stayed with the wwe. Maybe we wouldnt have lost Owen Hart and then we wouldve seen more Hart Foundation vs DX, Bret vs Shawn, Bret vs Austin, Bret vs Rock, Vs Taker, and more Bret vs Owen with Owen finally winning the world title from his older brother. We also would have seen everyone’s dream match of Bret Hart vs Kurt Angle. Its sad to think about how Eric Bischoff ruined that mans career by not booking him properly in WCW. Bret was a workhorse. Bret might not have been as charismatic as Shawn,Austin,Rock,Hogan but he sure was great in the ring. A great ring general
 

· Registered
Joined
·
681 Posts
His WM12 match with Shawn is the greatest match in wrestling history and this is coming from a huge Shawn and Undertaker fan. That match is the reason I fell in love with wrestling and its not just because of HBK, Bret was the man back then as well.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
1,147 Posts
He was legit a massive name, and had wrestling just stopped in the mid 2000s, I think there would be a case for this argument. However, I believe in the last 15 years, Undertaker transcended the business in a cultural way that Bret never could and has therefore surpassed the Hitman. I also believe there’s an argument that Cena, Flair, Piper and possibly Macho Man are all bigger stars (actually, Flair for sure).
 

· Registered
Joined
·
6,703 Posts
he was the face of the WWE for several years. The only ones who can make that same claim are Hogan, Austin, Rock, Lesnar, Cena, and Reigns

however, I believe Andre, Goldberg, Warrior, Gorgeous George, anda few others were bigger names than Bret. I think Chris Jericho may have surpassed Bret Hart in name recognition (which is not a slight. Jericho is one of the biggest wrestling names of all time)
 

· Registered
Joined
·
6,451 Posts
There have been guys bigger in the States than Bret. Outside of the obvious big three in Hogan, Austin, Rock, you've got Cena, Andre, Nash, Savage, Batista, Warrior, Goldberg, HBK and maybe a couple of others. He was over huge in Canada and Europe though. And he played a massive part in getting Austin and the Mr. McMahon character over. He's one of the most important guys in the modern wrestling era.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
534 Posts
He is one of the All-Time Greats for sure. Hart vs Angle would have been one of the greatest matches of all time. Thanks Goldberg. Anyhow, Bret Hart for me was one of the most believable talents on the mic I have ever heard. His matches were near perfect. He is in my top 5 for sure.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
1,619 Posts
I never met anyone out of wrestling fans that knows Bret Hart but I don't live in the States or Europe so that's maybe a reason

I live in Egypt and Undertaker, Cena, HBK, and Triple H are far more known here.

I can even say that people know Randy Orton more than they know Bret Hart.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
4,809 Posts
Even though they broke box office numbers, I feel like Rock and Austin's success were short term in the late 90s. With Rock maybe returning from Hollywood some time to time for a Mania payday. A lot of wrestlers had greater longevity from Andre to Flair to Piper even Bret. Which I think is important as far as being one of the greatest of all time. Also people forget Bruno Samartino and Lou Thiesz who were on top for DECADES. Funny thing is, Bruno was not travelling as much but he would sell out everywhere in the same places in the same territory in the same month more than Hulk Hogan!
 

· Registered
Joined
·
337 Posts
Even though they broke box office numbers, I feel like Rock and Austin's success were short term in the late 90s. With Rock maybe returning from Hollywood some time to time for a Mania payday. A lot of wrestlers had greater longevity from Andre to Flair to Piper even Bret. Which I think is important as far as being one of the greatest of all time. Also people forget Bruno Samartino and Lou Thiesz who were on top for DECADES. Funny thing is, Bruno was not travelling as much but he would sell out everywhere in the same places in the same territory in the same month more than Hulk Hogan!
But Bret still couldn't draw
 

· Registered
Joined
·
4,809 Posts
But Bret still couldn't draw
I think it's more of an issue where wrestling was down in the early 90s across the board. Nobody was drawing in WCW at the same time, not even Flair, Vader or Sting. But as a wrestling fan watching the shows, Bret was definitely the man. And he was popular all over the World. And he remained a star all throughout the monday night wars. And he drew in tag teams in the Hart Foundation. That is what I mean about longevity. Same with Sting. These are guys that have been stars for a long time. Drawing for a short period on top doesn't mean shit. Would Austin had become so big without Bret? No way.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
9,136 Posts
No. By impact to the WWE itself, you would have to put the following above Bret:

Hulk Hogan
John Cena
Steve Austin
The Undertaker
Bruno Sammartino
Roman Reigns
Randy Savage
Brock Lesnar

Possible Andre and The Rock as well.
 
141 - 160 of 213 Posts
Top