Monday Night Raw Warm Up for September 10th, 2012

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This week’s abbreviated one-man version of the Warm Up revolves around one name: Bret Hart. Tonight WWE Raw touches down in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, site of the infamous 1997 “Montreal Screwjob” that saw has been the source of more discussion than few other things in wrestling history. For me, this is THE reason to watch tonight. However, given the relative lack of promotion for this aspect of the show on last week’s Raw I fear that many other things will take center stage tonight, and maybe they should.

I’m a huge fan of Bret Hart and have been for about as long as I can remember, and the “Screwjob” in Montreal arguably came during the height of Hart’s popularity at the dawn of the then WWF “Attitude Era.” On his final night with the company, the then-WWF Champion took on his arch-rival Shawn Michaels only to have Vince McMahon and referee Earl Hebner cheat Hart out of the title. Even in a world where outcome is scripted, we’re told this was one time where finish that was decided backstage wasn’t what the fans watching saw in the ring. Hart “lost” and livid with everyone involved left the company for Ted Turner’s competing WCW. That was fifteen years ago and even the Attitude stars are off the scene for the most part begging the question of whether the current fan base remembers or still cares about arguably the most controversial moment in the history of the WWE Championship.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u74i7IkMcSw]

While a return to Montreal is certainly noteworthy, it’s also worth considering that in the last few years Hart made his return to WWE television, publicly buried the hatchet with Shawn Michaels, and even took on Vince McMahon at WrestleMania 26. Even as a fan deeply invested in these names and this history, I’m not sure that Hart returning to the site of this profoundly negative moment in his career should be anything more than an acknowledgement that it’s in the past and a chance to give him a better lasting memory of that town. Of course the jaded wrestling fan in me sees a beat down from WWE Champion C.M. Punk in store for Hart tonight, I really hope that’s not the case. Hart’s appearances are sporadic and Punk beating down Hall of Famers does absolutely nothing for me. Aligning with Paul Heyman is far far more interesting and I’d much rather see Hart’s return to Montreal parlayed into something equally interesting.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_T1euMQwZPQ]

My hope is that the trifecta of home field appearances being made by Punk in Chicago last Monday, John Cena in Boston for Night of Champions this Sunday, and Hart in Montreal tonight leads to some creative writing. It makes me wish there was a top guy from Philadelphia to get behind (on a related note, Marvel Comics is moving their “hero” Venom to Philadelpahia and I fully intend try the book). There’s a lot there to work with and that doesn’t even get to the comparisons that can be drawn from Hart, Heyman, and Punk’s (albeit on screen) treatment by WWE and the McMahon over the years. Normally, THE JASON and I would have used this space to talk about all the things we’re looking forward to tonight on Raw, but honestly everything else is secondary.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eNcTi9aZUpg] [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6wWOZ08YsNM] [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P5P3_VRrdFs]

Read more about World Wrestling Entertainment on MyLatestDistraction.

Keep up with all of our weekly Monday Night Raw Warm Ups:
September 3rd, 2012 edition / September 17th, 2012 edition (coming next Monday)

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