At the time of the Attitude Era, the roster of what was then the World Wrestling Federation was arguably at its peak. From top-tier legends such as ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin, The Rock, Triple H, and Mankind to mid-card stalwarts in Kurt Angle, Chris Jericho, Eddie Guerrero, and Chyna, the sports entertainment giant truly was in the midst of a boom period.
One such star who unfortunately suffered, however, was Ken Shamrock. ‘The World’s Most Dangerous Man’ was a one-time Intercontinental and Tag Team Champion, as well as winning the 1998 King of the Ring tournament. However, his push randomly halted for reasons that are clear to Shamrock.
Ken Shamrock Believes Bret Hart Friendship Halted Attitude Era Success
Speaking with VladTV, Ken Shamrock explained that, owing to his training alongside Bret ‘The Hitman’ Hart and maintaining a close relationship with the entire Hart family, his ceiling for success was low:
“The [Montreal] Screwjob happened and, from that point on, we started going downhill from there. I believe it was because I trained with Bret. I went to Calgary and worked out with them at Stu’s [Bret’s father] place, and I became close to that group.”
Occurring at the 1997 Survivor Series pay-per-view, the Montreal Screwjob saw Bret Hart infamously lose the WWF Championship to Shawn Michaels. This marked the beginning of a bitter feud between Hart and WWE, specifically Michaels and Vince McMahon. ‘The Excellence of Execution’ eventually returned to the ring at WrestleMania XXVI vs. McMahon.
Ken Shamrock also competed on the night of the Screwjob, teaming with Ahmed Johnson and The Legion of Doom to best The Nation of Domination in a four-on-four Elimination match. Subsequent months saw the IMPACT Hall of Famer enjoy singles outings vs. Shawn Michaels, Triple H, and The Rock before he left the company in late 1999.