Bret Hart’s Calgary Sun Column
February 15, 2003
The death of Curt Hennig
With Curt Hennig I was able to do slick moves that
I wouldn’t think of doing with most other guys ... We adjusted
to each other’s timing in anepic back and forth battle where we
constantly gave back to each other. I had Curt beat after I came off
the second rope, spiking his chest with the point of my elbow, hooking
for a 1...2... when the bell clanged signaling the end of our twenty
minute match. Curt made his escape while I retrieved the house mic and
pleaded for five more minutes. Curt turned to leave, signaling me to
turn my back on him. In a flash he was back in the ring viciously
beating me to the mat. Kneeling over top of me and shaking me by the
hair he slapped me across the face until the referee managed to break
us apart. Angrily Curt climbed to the top turnbuckle while I popped up
to my feet and greeted him with a fist to the gut causing him to lose
his balance and crotch
himself hard on the corner strut. The crowd was going crazy as I
him off by the hair and clobbered him from one corner to the next until
he bounced out of the ring and slithered away in full retreat.
The fans thundered their approval. Curt stumbled back towards the
dressing room with a ton of heat. And me, I looked out at the fans ...
I had finally won them over. ... It had to be one of the best matches
I’d had in years.
I always thought I’d see my old friend Curt Hennig
Unfortunately that just wasn’t meant to be.
Mr. Perfect, one of the most loved and respected wrestlers of our
generation, died on Monday of an apparent heart attack.
He was only forty-four.
Curt will always be remembered as a great wrestler
but those of us lucky enough to have known him will remember him
best for his brilliant sense of humor, his big heart and his never
ending devotion to his family.
I looked forward to a day where I’d sit with Curt on my back porch, or
his, our canes propped nearby, a tub of long necks soaking in ice,
while we laugh and joke about the good times we had. But like so many
of our old mates who have gone before, the wrestling world mourns yet
another young son.
I was recently asked, if I could come back to wrestle just one more
match, one final hurrah, what wrestler would I pick to work with. i
said Curt Hennig. He was my all time favorite. He really was.
When I think back to our incredible matches they sort of remind me of
those spy vs. spy cartoons in Mad Magazine. We were similar in age,
size and background and we had a similar look, except that
Curt wore a mane of long blonde curly hair. Both of us were second
wrestlers whose father’s were respected men in a tough business and we
shared an understanding of what it was like to have mighty big shoes to
fill. Curt was infamous for his practical jokes. He loved chaining the
rookies’ ring bags to the benches in the dressing room. I, like so many
others, got along with Curt from the instant we met. I remember the
of electricity in the dressing room in Madison Square Garden when Curt
and I got ready for our first ever match. There is no higher tribute to
a wrestler than to look back to the dug out and see our peers watching,
arms crossed, waiting for us to show the world how it’s done. That we
If there was ever a chemistry between two wrestlers there was none
better than the one between me and Curt. He was a
one of a kind athlete who had impeccable timing and was an absolute
dream to work with in a wrestling ring. The matches we had together -
every single darn one - was a classic. We had a trust and respect for
another that I don’t see in the wrestlers today. I can never recall not
coming back after a match with Curt when we weren’t both grinning from
ear to ear, hugging and shaking hands. So many memories. So many
places. So many old friends gone. So many sad endings. Owen. Davey Boy.
Pillman. Rude. Surely our heavenly brothers will greet Curt on the
other side. I can see Andre the Giant sliding out a chair and calling
Curt over for a game of Crazy 8’s. - with Curt smiling as Davey and
Owen chain his ring bag to the pearly gates.
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