AEW commentator, Jim Ross, has told the story of the infamous backstage brawl between Shawn Michaels and Bret Hart in 1997.
Stemming from the notorious ‘Sunny Days’ promo on May 19, which was Shawn Michaels’ way of causing trouble for Hart from a misplaced belief that Bret was having an affair with Sunny at the same time she had been seeing ‘The Heartbreak Kid’, the simmering tension came to a head three weeks later when the cameras weren’t rolling.
Following problems at home thanks to the promo, a furious Hart confronted Michaels in his dressing room on June 6 in a argument which lead to a heated fight between the company’s two top stars.
After Shawn had walked away from Hart, who had accused him with messing with his family, with a smirk, ‘The Hitman’ shoved him into a wall, through a partition and mounted Michaels with several vicious punches until Gerald Brisco and Pat Patterson pulled him off.
Following what was described as a one-sided fight, ‘The Showstopper’ lost a clump of hair, his face was bruised and swollen from the hard punches and his elbow had been cut after the fall through the partition.
After Hart had left the arena – subsequent to a heated row with Briscoe – Michaels refused to work the Monday Night Raw episode on which he was due to battle Brian Pillman.
Now, Jim Ross has told the tale of the brawl on his Grilling JR Podcast, noting that he missed the best part and arrived seconds too late to witness the entire thing:
“I got there about 30 seconds after it ended. [Pat] Patterson was deeply involved in it. Patterson loved those two guys like sons. Bret with his great heritage and Canadian legacy – Pat was especially drawn to it. Of course, Shawn was one of Pat’s favorites. He just loved his in-ring work and loved the things he could do. Pat would say, ‘Shawn Michaels is as close to Ray Stevens as anybody I’ve ever seen.’ I remember Shawn lost a lot of hair. Bret was ripping and tearing anything you could get a hold of. [Jerry] Lawler was in there, Patterson was in there. I think they took Patterson down. Patterson was trying to separate them and they all went tumbling down. But nobody really got hurt. It wasn’t a fight that saw teeth knocked out and broken noses and eyes swelled shut and things of that nature. It didn’t get that to extreme, but it was intense. And then the aftermath – I think Shawn wanted to go home, and Bret still hung around.”
As noted by Ross, Jerry Lawler was said to have been an unwilling participant when the fight interrupted him on the toilet. One account states that both men burst through the bathroom door while Lawler was still on the lavatory, causing him to pull up his underwear and help to break up the fracas. That, however, is unconfirmed.
Credit for the interview: Grilling JR Podcast
h/t for the transcription: WrestlingHeadlines.Com