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Home / Comparison/Player Vs. Player / Shawn Michaels VS Bret Hart: Who was the better wrestler?

What’s up everybody? My name is Tad Johnson, and I’m a guest writer for Sports-Kings’ “VERSUS” article of the week. To put it lightly, I’m die-hard wrestling fanatic. So it’s my honor to compare two of my all-time favorite guys in the ring to finally put my opinion in writing on who I think is the better of the two.

I’ll be comparing Bret Hart and Shawn Michaels. This rivalry is one of the most intense ones you’ll find that goes both inside and outside the ring. For a long time, these two legitimately hated each other. I’ll try and keep it unbiased and let you, the reader, decide who the better of these two was.

 Tag Team

Both of these guys started off in the WWF in a very similar way. Both came into the “big leagues” as a part of the tag team division. Bret Hart tagged with Jim ‘The Anvil’ Neidhart as one half of the legendary Hart Foundation, while Shawn was in a tag team with Marty Janetty in a tag team called ‘The Rockers’. Overall, I think the edge here has to go to Bret and the Hart Foundation due to the absolute cohesiveness of the team.

The Rockers were strictly speed and showmanship, while the Hart Foundation was a great combination of size (Neidhart was a HUGE man) and technical ability (Bret Hart was arguably the best technical wrestler in the history of the company). The team was just overall better in the ring than The Rockers, even though The Rockers were more exciting.

EDGE- Bret Hart

 

Main event

Both competitors had their time in the limelight, but unfortunately for both of them, they were popular in the mid-90s, which was a down period for the WWF. Fan support was down, so they didn’t have the kind of fanfare that guys like Hulk Hogan or Stone Cold Steve Austin got during their primes. Still, they were great champions.

They were both majorly ‘over’ (a wrestling term for being popular), but Shawn was absolutely loved by the fans no matter where he went. Bret ended up getting very famous in his home country of Canada, but was “booed” time and again in the good ol’ US of A. The difference lied in how they reached the top of the proverbial mountain. While Bret worked his ass off day in and day out, Shawn played the politics game, using his friends in high places to get what he wanted.

Because of Shawn’s friends, his main event time was a lot more exciting and popular than Bret’s. Who can forget Shawn Michaels famously ziplining to the ring on his way to winning his first WWF title in an Iron Man match against Bret, widely considered one of the best matches of all time. Shawn Michaels ultimately was a better main eventer than Bret Hart.

EDGE- Shawn Michaels

 

The “It” Factor

Ultimately, in wrestling it doesn’t matter who the best technical wrestler is, if you don’t have that “it” factor, you can only go so far. When I say the “it” factor, I’m talking about the ability to get the crowd involved. The ability to get them  on their feet, whether they are cheering or booing, it’s the most important part of being a professional wrestler. Both of these guys had a great ability to get the fans going, but Shawn was, and still is, on another level.

To be honest, it has nothing to do with Bret’s inability, but instead is completely based on the fact that almost no one is on the same level as the Heartbreak Kid Shawn Michaels. Whether he was making the fans cheer or boo, Shawn Michaels is easily one of the most talented and charismatic people to ever grace the squared circle. So, with that said:

WINNER – Shawn Michaels

As you can see, Shawn Michaels is the winner of this comparison, even though this is an argument that could be taken a lot further. Personally, I’m a huge fan of Bret Hart, so it wasn’t easy for me to say that Shawn is better than him. I’m not a big fan of Shawn, and what he did to Bret at Survivor Series 1997 was one of the saddest things I’ve seen as a fan (if you don’t know what I’m talking about, google ‘Montreal Screwjob 1997’ and read up. This wasn’t a wrestling angle, this was legit). I also don’t want people to think I hate Shawn. He is a part of one of my favorite matches/moments of all time. Check it out!

Guest Columnist: Tad Johnson

 

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