Bruce Hart (wrestler)

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Bruce Hart
BrucehartchrischavisUCW.jpg
Bruce Hart (right) in 1997
Birth name Bruce Ambrose Edwardious Hart[1]
Born (1950-01-13) January 13, 1950 (age 66)[2]
Calgary, Alberta, Canada[2]
Spouse(s) Andrea Hart (divorced)
Rachel Hart
Children 6
Family Hart
Professional wrestling career
Ring name(s) Bruce Hart
Billed height 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)[2]
Billed weight 212 lb (96 kg)[2]
Trained by Stu Hart[2]
Debut December 2, 1972[3]
Retired 2003

Bruce Ambrose Edwardious Hart Sr.,[1] possibly Bruce Dennis Luis Hart Sr.[4] (born January 13, 1950)[5] is a Canadian retired professional wrestler, promoter, booker, trainer and school teacher. He is a member of the Hart wrestling family and is best known for his several appearances in WWE, often with his brothers Bret and Owen.

In June 2013, Hart resurrected his famous wrestling school, Hart Brothers University, and continues to train wrestlers in his hometown of Calgary, AB. Hart remains a school teacher for the Calgary Board of Education, and is currently pursuing a relaunch of his father's legendary promotion, Stampede Wrestling.

Early life[edit]

While his mother was pregnant with Hart she and her husband Stu suffered an automobile accident. This resulted in his older brother Smith being taken cared of by their maternal grandparents for almost two years while Helen recovered in the hospital.[6]

He is of Greek descent through his maternal grandmother and Irish through his maternal grandfather.[7][8][9][10] His father was mainly of Scots-Irish descent but also had Scottish and English ancestry.[11][12]

Hart is a dual citizen of Canada and the United States thanks to his mother Helen, who was born in New York.[13][14]

Professional wrestling career[edit]

Bruce Hart began his wrestling training in 1971, at the age of 21, in his father's legendary basement, the dungeon. Trained by Stu Hart, Bruce, like the rest of his family, were internationally renowned in the wrestling world for their technically sound, amateur wrestling style matches.

He debuted in 1972, in his fathers famous Calgary promotion, Stampede Wrestling, tag teaming with Dan Kroffat in the main event, against North American Champion Kendo Nagasaki and Lord Sloan. For the next six months he remained a headline performer for the promotion, working against the likes of John Quinn, Benny Ramirez, Frank Butcher, Tor Kamata, Chatti Yokuchi and Yasu Fuji. In June 1973, he suffered a serious shoulder injury which sidelined him for 9 months and nearly finished his career. He returned in the summer of 1974, and continued to be a feature performer in Western Canada.

In 1977 he traveled to the United Kingdom, where he wrestled under the name "Bronco" Bruce Hart for the London based Joint Promotions.[15] While there, he met a young Tom Billington and offered him an opportunity to wrestle for Stampede, which Billington declined.[16] After a falling out with Joint Promotions, Billington, using the ring name Dynamite Kid, traveled to Canada and joined Stampede.[17] Dynamite quickly became a huge star in Western Canada and, as a result, Hart invited his younger cousin, Smith to also come to Western Canada. Smith, who originally wrestled as Young David, became known as Davey Boy Smith (after British lightweight boxing champion - Davey Boy Green) would also go on to become a major star in the Stampede promotion. Although the two British stars primarily wrestled against each other in Stampede Wrestling, with Billington as a heel and Smith as a face, they would later go on to enjoy success as a tag team in the WWF as the British Bulldogs.

From 1979 until 1984, with Bruce in charge of matchmaking and talent development, the Stampede promotion enjoyed its greatest success, selling out consistently and producing a myriad of legendary superstars, including: Jake Roberts, the Junkyard Dog, Jim Neidhart, David "Dr. D." Shults, Honky Tonk Man, Bad News Allen (aka Bad News Brown) and the iconic Bret "the Hitman" Hart. Near the end of 1984, Bruce's father, Stu, accepted an offer from WWF president, Vince McMahon, to sell the promotion for $1,000,000, plus 10% of all subsequent WWF gates in Western Canada to the WWF. As part of the deal, several Stampede superstars, including Bret Hart, Dynamite Kid, Davey Boy and Neidhart also joined the WWF. However, several months later, Bruce violated the terms of the agreement by assisting a rival promotion in the territory, leading McMahon to renegade on the deal.[18]

As a result, near the end of 1985, Stu Hart decided to re-open the promotion. Initially the promotion, which had been decimated by the loss of most of its superstars, struggled to remain afloat. As a consequence, Bruce chose to feature a new, edgier and more hard core style of wrestling - featuring villains: the Karachi Vice (Makhan and Vokhan Singh and the Great Gama, the Viet Cong Express (Hiroshi Hase and Nubohiko Niikura) Jason the Terrible, the masked Zodiak (Barry Orton) and dynamic up and coming babyfaces, such as Owen Hart, Ben Bassarab, Chris Benoit, Jushin Thunder Liger and the dynamic tag team combo of Bad Company (Bruce Hart and Brian Pillman). In short order, the promotion would thrive for the next several years, drawing reasonable gates and turning out a myriad of cutting edge superstar performers.

In 1996 Bruce Hart made a comeback to the ring with the independent New York based promotion Ultimate Championship Wrestling (UCW), where he wrestled with the likes of Chris Chavis, his brother-in-law Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart, Falcon Coperis, and Marty Jannetty. Bruce Hart was instrumental in the development of the young talent of the UCW.[19][20]

World Wrestling Federation/Entertainment[edit]

Hart has made several appearances with his brothers Bret and Owen in the World Wrestling Federation (WWF). Bruce made his first appearance at the 1993 Survivor Series pay-per-view, teaming with his brothers Bret, Owen and Keith to take on Shawn Michaels and his "Knights" (The Red Knight, The Blue Knight and The Black Knight). The Knights theme was used as the team was supposed to be led by Jerry "The King" Lawler, who was having legal troubles at the same time as his feud with Bret Hart and was replaced by Michaels. Hart Brothers won the match, in which Stu Hart famously (worked) punched out Michaels on the floor, with Owen being the only team member eliminated. This ignited a lengthy feud between Bret and Owen that would last for several years. At the 1994 SummerSlam, the two brothers competed in a Steel Cage match for the WWF Championship. Bruce and several Hart brothers interfered in the match. Bruce also appeared on an episode of Monday Night Raw in the summer of 1994.[21]

Bruce's next WWF appearance was at In Your House 16: Canadian Stampede when he interfered in the main event which pitted The Hart Foundation (Bret Hart, Owen Hart, British Bulldog, Brian Pillman and Jim Neidhart) against Stone Cold Steve Austin, Ken Shamrock, Goldust and Legion of Doom (Hawk and Animal). Bruce played a key role in the finish of the match as he scuffled with Austin, allowing Owen to score the pinfall victory over Austin.[22][23]

Bruce's next and most recent appearance in the renamed WWE was at WrestleMania XXVI, where he was the surprise Special Guest Referee for his brother Bret's first WWE match in 13 years, a No Holds Barred Lumberjack match against the WWE chairman Vince McMahon. McMahon thought that Bruce and the rest of Hart family were at his side, but they all turned on him and helped Bret win the match.[24]

Wrestling related[edit]

Hart has appeared on several wrestling documentaries, including the 2010 documentary Survival of the Hitman which is about his younger brother Bret Hart.

He was also present on the stage when his father Stu Hart was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame.[25]

Personal life[edit]

Hart lives in Calgary, Alberta, Canada where he continues to train aspiring wrestlers in Hart Brothers University (HBU). He has five children with his ex-wife, Andrea Hart: daughters Brit and Lara as well as sons Torrin, Bruce Jr. and Rhettger Hart. Rhett was born three months premature and suffers from cerebral palsy.[26]

Hart and his wife Andrea separated for a period from 2000 and Andrea started a relationship with Hart's former brother in law Davey Boy Smith until Smith's death in 2002. Andrea and Hart later reconciled but separated again after a time.[27][28]

In 2007 he married a woman named Rachel Overholt.[29] They had their first child in October 2007, Davis Gene Hart.

Two of Bruce Hart's sons Bruce Jr and Torrin have been involved in pro wrestling.[30]

In wrestling[edit]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

1TJ Wilson replaced Teddy Hart after Hart suffered an injury.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Hart, Diana; McLellan, Kirstie (2001). Under the Mat: Inside Wrestling's Greatest Family. Fenn. p. 22 pp. ISBN 1-55168-256-7. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f "Bruce Hart Profile". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved 2008-02-05. 
  3. ^ Vance Nevada's Canadian Wrestling Results Archive (Stampede, December 2, 1972)
  4. ^ Historical Dictionary of Wrestling. Scarecrow Press, inc. 2014. p. 367 pp. ISBN 978-0-8108-7926-3. 
  5. ^ McCoy, Heath (2007). Pain and Passion: The History of Stampede Wrestling. ECW Press. p. 33. ISBN 978-1-55022-787-1. 
  6. ^ Heath McCoy (2007). Pain and Passion: The History of Stampede Wrestling. ECWPress. p. 37 pp. ISBN 978-1-55022-787-1. 
  7. ^ Hart, Bret (2007). Hitman: My real life in the cartoon world of wrestling. Ebury Press. p. 8 pp. ISBN 9780091932862. 
  8. ^ Letawsky, Craig (2002-05-07). "Ask 411 - 5.07.02". 411wrestling.com. 
  9. ^ Hart, Diana; McLellan, Kirstie (2001). Under the Mat: Inside Wrestling's Greatest Family. Fenn. p. 16 pp. ISBN 1-55168-256-7. 
  10. ^ Heath McCoy (2007). Pain and Passion: The History of Stampede Wrestling. ECWPress. p. 30 pp. ISBN 978-1-55022-787-1. 
  11. ^ Slamthology: Collected Wrestling Writings 1991-2004. jnlister. 2005. p. 252 pp. ISBN 1-4116-5329-7. 
  12. ^ Heath McCoy (2007). Pain and Passion: The History of Stampede Wrestling. ECWPress. p. 16 pp. ISBN 978-1-55022-787-1. 
  13. ^ Martha Hart; Eric Francis (2004). Broken Harts: The Life and Death of Owen Hart. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 84 pp. ISBN 978-1-59077-036-8. 
  14. ^ name="SLAM!""An open letter to Shawn Michaels". http: canoe. May 17, 1997. 
  15. ^ McCoy, Heath (2007). Pain and Passion: The History of Stampede Wrestling. ECW Press. p. 133. ISBN 978-1-55022-787-1. 
  16. ^ Billington, Tom (2001). Pure Dynamite: The Price You Pay for Wrestling Stardom. Winding Stair Press. p. 14. ISBN 978-1-55366-084-2. 
  17. ^ Billington, Tom (2001). Pure Dynamite: The Price You Pay for Wrestling Stardom. Winding Stair Press. p. 15. ISBN 978-1-55366-084-2. 
  18. ^ Hart, Bret (2007). Hitman: My real life in the cartoon world of wrestling. Ebury Press. p. 170 pp. ISBN 9780091932862. 
  19. ^ Hart, Bruce (2011). Straight From the Hart. ECW Press. p. 55. ISBN 978-1-55022-939-4. 
  20. ^ "WRESTLER CHARLES “GUILLOTINE” LeGRANDE ON TIGER KHAN". smashedmedia.us. Retrieved 2013. 
  21. ^ Cawthon, Graham (2013). the History of Professional Wrestling Vol 2: WWF 1990 - 1999. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform. ASIN B00RWUNSRS. 
  22. ^ Hart, Bret (2008). Hitman: My Real Life in the Cartoon World of Wrestling. Grand Central Publishing. p. 432. ISBN 978-0-446-53972-2. 
  23. ^ Hart, Bruce (2011). Straight From the Hart. ECW Press. p. 207. ISBN 978-1-55022-939-4. 
  24. ^ "Bret Hart def. Mr. McMahon in a No Holds Barred Match". WWE. March 28, 2010. Retrieved December 23, 2012. 
  25. ^ [1] Bret Hart and the Hart family speak on behalf of Stu Hart
  26. ^ Heath McCoy (2007). Pain and Passion: The History of Stampede Wrestling. ECWPress. p. 273 pp. ISBN 978-1-55022-787-1. 
  27. ^ Heath McCoy (2007). Pain and Passion: The History of Stampede Wrestling. ECWPress. p. 293 pp. ISBN 978-1-55022-787-1. 
  28. ^ Martha Hart; Eric Francis (2004). Broken Harts: The Life and Death of Owen Hart. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 37 pp. ISBN 978-1-59077-036-8. 
  29. ^ name="MyHeritage Ltd""biographical-summaries-of-notable-people". familia.evemor.com. Retrieved 2015. 
  30. ^ "hartbrosuniversity: our trainers". Hartbros university. Retrieved 2015. 
  31. ^ a b "The PWI 500". Pro Wrestling Illustrated (London Publishing Co.) 17 (13): 52. 1997. 
  32. ^ http://www.cagematch.net/?id=2&nr=60&view=awards#awards
  33. ^ "Stampede World Mid-Heavyweight Title". Puroresu Dojo. 2003. 
  34. ^ "Stampede Wrestling Hall of Fame (1948–1990)". Puroresu Dojo. 2003. 

External links[edit]