June 25, 2005
Frank Koenen

October 12, 1992
Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
WWF Superstars Taping

Backstory: No real backstory here. Basically, Flair is coming in as champion, and is one of two guys (along with Randy Savage) still active in the company that has a history of being a draw. Bret is coming in as one of two guys (with the Undertaker) from the new generation that has a major win over a major star of the old generation (Roddy Piper at WrestleMania VIII). Here Bret Hart is seemingly getting a title shot at this TV taping, because it’s Canada (Saskatoon) since Flair was in a house show marriage with the Ultimate Warrior at this point.

-WWF World Champion Ric Flair (w/Mr. Perfect) vs. Bret Hart
Gorilla Monsoon and Lord Alfred Hayes call the action. Flair & Hart circle one another and then they lock up. Flair shoves Bret into the corner, and they break. In the early going, Lord Alfred indirectly calls Bret dull. Hayes indirectly does a few of things to put down the wrestlers through the match and says words like “phraseology.” These are some of the reasons that Lord Alfred Hayes sucks in the commentating department. Anyway, back to the match. Another lockup leads to a headlock takedown by Flair. Flair gets a few near falls. Bret is able to fight his way up. Flair gets on a hammerlock, but Bret reverses into one of his own. Flair gets into the ropes. Another lockup, Bret is pushed back into the corner, but gets Flair’s arm and works over it a little. Flair gets Bret backed into the corner, and the referee calls for the break. Flair shoves Bret into the corner then gives him a chop followed by a whip to the opposite corner. Flair goes for an overhead suplex, but Bret get one of his own. Bret hits a back body drop on Flair. Flair goes to the outside, and stalls for a while. Back in we have another lockup, and a headlock this time by Bret. Flair gets out of it with a wristlock, but Bret gets one of his own. Bret then goes into an arm-bar and is able to take Flair down by the arm (not quite an armdrag though). Flair drop toeholds out of the arm-bar, but Bret ends up back on top with a hammerlock on the mat. Flair gets back to his feet, and gets Bret into the corner, and the referee for the break. Bret walks into a kick to the gut. Flair follows with a chop, and then throws Bret outside. In an attempt to come back in, Bret goes for a sunset flip, but gets punched in the face, and goes back outside. Bret with another sunset flip attempt, this time successful when he pulls Flair’s tights, giving us our obligatory ass shot of Flair. Flair goes for whip, and its reversed. Bret gets a back body drop, and two clotheslines. Flair stumbles outside and we get a Flair flop. Back in Bret headbutts Flair, and we get another Flair flop. Flair gets the Greco-Roman thumb to the eye to turn the tide. Whip into the corner by Flair, then a whip into the opposite corner. BTW, I’ve always thought Bret takes the best bumps into turnbuckles. Sternum first, and he always sells it well. Anyway, Flair begins to work over Bret’s legs. Flair gets Bret in the corner and gives him a few punches, chops, and kicks. Flair goes for a knee drop, but misses. Bret tries for a figure four, but it just doesn’t turn out. Flair gets a headlock on Bret, but Bret breaks it up. Bret then gets on the figure four. Flair struggles, and is able to get into ropes. He sells the leg for the rest of the match. Bret misses an elbow. Flair goes for a hiptoss, but Bret is able to get a backslide for two. Flair whips Bret into the ropes, but it’s reversed by Bret, who is able to catch Flair coming off the ropes, and gets a sleeper. Flair side suplexes out of it. Flair gets a small package for two. Flair hits a double under hook suplex. Flair hits a knee, but ends up hurting himself. Whip into the corner by Flair, followed by a chop and a couple of near falls. Small package out of no where by Bret. Flair comes back to get the figure four. Bret struggles to get into the ropes. Flair chops Bret, followed by a shot to the midsection. Flair beats on Bret and works on the leg. Flair yells “NOW WE GO TO SCHOOL!”, but gets small packaged for two. Flair with a chop, but Bret gets a punch. Back and forth shots with Bret mounting a comeback. Bret whips Flair into the corner, but ends up gets a kick to the midsection. Flair goes up top, but since he’s a heel at this time, he of course gets slammed off. Bret gets a big back body drop and then an elbow. Finally Bret begins his trademark comeback moves. Russian Legsweep, 2. Backbreaker, 2. Second Rope Elbow, 2. Suplex, 2. Flair gets a couple of chops, but Bret no sells them. They slug back and forth in the middle of the ring. Bret gets Flair on the top rope and superplexes him off. Bret locks on the sharpshooter. Perfect, who has really done little in this match, distract the referee, but it’s no use, as Flair submits at 26:30, and the place goes nuts as Bret wins the title. Excellent. Probably the best Flair-Bret match, as they were almost on the same page and still in their primes. After this they clashed a lot because Bret thought as champion he should call the match, Flair thought as the heel and veteran he should call the match. This is where some of the animosity between Flair and Bret started. Here, Flair tried to carry Bret, who didn’t need carrying. If Flair treated Bret like his equal, I think the two could have had a truly legendary match. As it is I have to give it ****3/4, almost perfect, but not quite.

Aftermath: After his title win, Bret solidly established himself as a main eventer. Bret stayed on top of the WWF until he left in 1997. Flair floundered for a while, fighting Bret, The Ultimate Warrior, and Randy Savage. Flair, no longer champion, asked for his release and got it. He lost a loser leaves town match against Mr. Perfect on an early 1993 episode of Monday Night Raw.

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