WARNING:We have detected your browser is out of date. For both performance, security and a better web experience you should keep up to date to avoid viruses, malware, hijacking and stay on top of compatibility features.
WNS Fan View: "What was "Best for Business"...16 years ago.
Posted By: Craig Liggeons on Nov 12, 2013
NOVEMBER 9, 1997 SURVIVOR SERIES
Yes, it's been 16 years since the most talked about match in pro wrestling history took place in Montreal. Bret Hart vs. Shawn Michaels for the WWE Title. For the uninformed youth who don't know the full story. Bret had signed a 20-year contract with the WWE the year before, but Vince McMahon later told him he would be unable to fulfill the terms of the deal, and for Bret to negotiate a contract with WCW. Bret did, and gave notice to the WWE. As part of the agreement WCW would not mention Hart's signing until after the Survivor Series Pay Per View. and Hart didn't want to take the focus off his match with Michaels. But somehow word leaked out.
The afternoon of November 9th was spent discussing how the match would end. Hart was adamant about not doing a job for Michaels in Montreal. Mostly due to Michaels unwillingness to do a job for Bret after WrestleMania 12, but also because at this point Hart couldn't stand Michaels. A double disqualification was the agreed upon finish. Earl Hebner would take a bump. Michaels would put the sharpshooter on Bret, Bret would reverse it, Michaels would tap out but the ref would be down and wouldn't see it. Bret would release the hold to go check on Earl, then Shawn would hit Bret with the Super Kick (I hate the term "Sweet Chin Music"). A second referee would come down to count, but Owen Hart and Jim Neidhart would pull him out of the ring eventually leading to a large scrum between DX and Team Canada ending in a Double DQ. Hart was even agreeable to doing the exact same finish the next night on RAW with Owen & Neidhart being too late to stop the referee's count. What Bret REALLY wanted to do was voluntarily give up the title on RAW. Hand the belt to Vince in the ring, put the WWE over, say goodbye to the fans, thank the company and leave gracefully. But as adamant as Bret was about not doing a job to Shawn, that's how adamant Vince was about getting the belt off Bret before WCW announced they had signed the WWE Champion on Monday Nitro. So the "Farewell to Bret" Night on RAW was not gonna happen on Vince's watch!
We all know what happened next. Hebner didn't lay down. He popped up and called for the bell while Bret was reversing the sharpshooter. Michaels acted pissed off at the ending though he later admitted he was in on the screwjob the whole time. And Bret trashed the announcer's table and threw monitors, something that we take for granted now, but Bret did it first.
I was really hoping that Bret would come out on top in the end since he was severely mistreated on his way out of a company he'd been loyal to for 10 years. I was hoping that he would go to WCW and help them maintain their Number One spot in the Monday Night Wars and that WWE would be the one going out of business. But alas, Bret was going to a sinking ship while the WWE thrived. In part to the screwjob heard 'round the world. The next 16 years the WWE and Vince milked this event as much as humanly possible. Whenever you've seen a superstar leave the ring and jump into a waiting car, that was a nod to Earl Hebner doing the same thing that night in Montreal. Every event that took place in Montreal, or any Canadian ring, saw every Canadian wrestler do a job or get humiliated. Vince's proclamation that "Bret screwed Bret" further infuriated fans. They've even done the same ending several times since then.
I still can't stand Vince for what he did to Bret. I firmly believe if he had to do it all over again he would screw Bret again without hesitation. He wouldn't let someone leave on their own terms, they have to leave on his. Lying to Bret the day of the Survivor Series to prevent WCW from announcing Bret's signing (a deal that Vince encouraged Bret to take)and taking the belt off him without his knowledge, was best for business in Vince's eyes. Bret towed the line, carried the water, paid his dues, and was The Face of the company for many years. Why do this to someone who's been so loyal to you?
Having seen the Bret Hart-Shawn Michaels sit down interview with Jim Ross, I'm happy that Bret and Shawn have at least squashed their beef. But I'd like to see a similar interview with Bret and Vince. I wonder if there could've been a compromise without one screwing the other. Why couldn't Bret just do the job in Montreal so he could say goodbye on RAW the next day? Why couldn't Vince let the double disqualification finish go as planned and trust that Bret wouldn't betray the company he loved so much by announcing his contract with WCW?
Adding comments is disabled due to age of article.
» More News From This Feed
Sin Cara Granted His Release A few weeks ago, Jorge Arias aka Sin Cara asked for his release from WWE. Well, it appears he's gotten his wish. The star took to Twitter to announce the news. As of today I have been gran[...]
Dec 08 - A few weeks ago, Jorge Arias aka Sin Cara asked for his release from WWE. Well, it appears he's gotten his wish. The star took to Twitter to announce the news. As of today I have been gran[...]
Nikki Bella Hopes To Wrestle Again One Day Nikki Bella is definitely one of WWE's top female wrestlers of all time. The star recently announced she's had to retire from wrestling due to a cyst found on her brain. Despite her medical diagnosis[...]
Dec 08 - Nikki Bella is definitely one of WWE's top female wrestlers of all time. The star recently announced she's had to retire from wrestling due to a cyst found on her brain. Despite her medical diagnosis[...]
Dec 08 - In October, WWE star Mike Kanellis asked for his release from the company. Mike's request came a few months after reports surfaced that he and his wife Maria had signed new deals with the company. Ma[...]
Dec 08 - Yesterday, news broke that NXT star Walter had been robbed. The star was in Chicago preparing for a match at EVOLVE. Among the items stolen were his passport, shoes, and the WWE UK Championship. Whil[...]
Dec 08 - WWE Superstar Nia Jax has been sidelined since April of this year due to a dual ACL injury and tears in both of her knees that required surgery. She recently uploaded some footage of herself at the W[...]
Dec 08 - From The Ultimate Warrior to Stone Cold Steve Austin and John Cena, we have seen many custom title belts that seem to capture the persona of the holder. A week ago on SmackDown, Bray Wyatt announced [...]
Dec 08 - AEW star Jon Moxley made a surprise appearance after the World Tag League finals. He made his appearance after Lance Archer’s match. Archer is now the IWGP United States Champion, the title Mox[...]
Dec 08 - AEW Champion Chris Jericho appeared in a video during New Japan Pro Wrestling’s World Tag League event in a video package as The Painmaker with a new promo. In the video, Jericho addressed Hiro[...]
Dec 08 - During last night's Impact Wrestling "No Surrender" event Scott D’Amore came out to the ring and made a special announcement. D’Amore offered Larry D an Impact Wrestling contract. This is[...]
Dec 08 - WWE tag team The Revival took to Twitter recently to give Tony Schiavone a shoutout, except eagle-eyed fans noticed the photo they posed in wasn't with the actual AEW announcer, in fact it was just a [...]
Dec 08 - If you wondered why WWE Chairman Vince McMahon’s name was trending on Twitter in the early hours of Sunday morning there is no need for alarm. His name was thrown in the mix of a guessing game [...]
Dec 07 - Friday’s WWE SmackDown scored 2.446 million viewers, according to Showbuzz Daily. This is up from last week’s 2.325 viewers. The blue-brand was #7 for the night. The episode drew a 0.7 ra[...]
Dec 07 - After being granted his release from WWE, ACH appeared to be on his way to signing with MLW. Yet, in a shocking turn of events, the star announced he’s quitting wrestling. He made the ann[...]
Dec 07 - Chris Jericho and his stable Inner Circle are one of AEW’s top acts. During a recent episode of his podcast, Jericho revealed the original ideas that were discussed during the formation o[...]
Dec 07 - WWE is preparing to host another show at Madison Square Garden on December 26th. With the event a few weeks away, new matches have been added to the card. Here’s what fans can expe[...]
WWE UK Championship Reported Stolen In Chicago The WWE UK Championship has been stolen in a car rental smash and grab. WWE Superstar and current UK Champion Walter reported the robbery, which took place in Chicago, IL. Aside from the champi[...]
Dec 07 - The WWE UK Championship has been stolen in a car rental smash and grab. WWE Superstar and current UK Champion Walter reported the robbery, which took place in Chicago, IL. Aside from the champi[...]
Dec 07 - Pro wrestling legend Bobby Fulton, one half of The Fantastics with Tommy Rogers, revealed on Facebook yesterday night that he has been diagnosed with throat cancer. He posted: "Good Evening![...]
Impact Wrestling Star Moose Injured Impact Wrestling star Moose looks set to miss upcoming events due to an injury. He tweeted the following video of himself receiving treatment backstage. WARNING: If you don't like needles do not pres[...]
Dec 07 - Impact Wrestling star Moose looks set to miss upcoming events due to an injury. He tweeted the following video of himself receiving treatment backstage. WARNING: If you don't like needles do not pres[...]
Dec 07 - WWE star Oney Lorcan announced on Twitter that he has signed a new multi-year deal with the company. He tweeted: "I AM PLEASED TO ANNOUNCE THAT I HAVE AGREED TO A NEW MULTI YEAR CONTRACT AGREEMENT [...]
Dec 07 - Former WWE star ACH (Jordan Myles), who recently returned to MLW took to social media to explain why he targeted ROH star Jay Lethal when he had his meltdown on Twitter recently. "f--k ROH TOO! The[...]
SmackDown Quick Results (12/06/2019) Below is the summary and recap for tonight's episode of SmackDown: *Opening Segment* The show kicks off with Miz TV. We are told that Daniel Bryan has not been seen since the attack by The Fiend las[...]
Dec 06 - Below is the summary and recap for tonight's episode of SmackDown: *Opening Segment* The show kicks off with Miz TV. We are told that Daniel Bryan has not been seen since the attack by The Fiend las[...]