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Discussion Starter · #1 ·

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I would say Bret did. Bret's house show attendance in 96 is higher than HBK's and Bret raised the bar in 1997. When HBK got the belt Mr Mc. Mahon was born and Austin was the hottest guy in the company. Attendance in late 97 went up due to the screwjob.
HBK carried the houses during Bret's reign in early 1996.

The audience were paying to see HBK return from injury.
 

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Eventhough HBK liked to take credit for the AE, as far as I can see it really (ironically) was Bret Hart that really kind-of kicked it all off. Looking back the first real feud was Bret Hart vs Steve Austin, especially the Frustrated ain’t the word for it promo.

The thread itself is talking about something-else though, I see.
 

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I would say Bret did. Bret's house show attendance in 96 is higher than HBK's and Bret raised the bar in 1997. When HBK got the belt Mr Mc. Mahon was born and Austin was the hottest guy in the company. Attendance in late 97 went up due to the screwjob.
Eventhough HBK liked to take credit for the AE, as far as I can see it really (ironically) was Bret Hart that really kind-of kicked it all off. Looking back the first real feud was Bret Hart vs Steve Austin, especially the Frustrated ain’t the word for it promo.

The thread itself is talking about something-else though, I see.
hbk was more edgy than bret, if you’re talking about an attitude you era wrestler it’s hbk not bret
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
hbk was more edgy than bret, if you’re talking about an attitude you era wrestler it’s hbk not bret
This guy gets it.

It was more Austin and the Montreal fallout than HBK being champ.
Nah HBK was responsible for growing a lot of the audience.

Austim merely took over and continued to grow it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
He was the champion in 1996, for almost the entire year, yet he didn't draw well.

You don't have to be a brain surgeon to understand that Austin was the reason behind the rise in late 97.
HBK did draw well in 1996. Hot competition, bad booking, no support but still gave WWF it's best house show business since 91.

HBK grew the audience in late 1997. Not Austin.
 

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The industry grew as a whole due to Sting v Hogan, Austin, DX, Undertaker/ Kane. The competition between the 2 companies was really starting to heat up.

Michaels was a contributing factor and indeed a draw in his own right. It certainly helped that he screwed over Bret and all the backstage drama between the 2 spilling out but even with that he's well behind Sting/ NWO and Austin. Those were the 2 acts that made the Monday Night Wars. The build to WM 14 was all about Austin.
 
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