WWE recently held its Clash at the Castle premium live event at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales. It was the first WWE arena show in the UK since summer festival 1992 at Wembley Stadium, and it was a resounding success. SummerSlam 92 had an incredible main event in which The British Bulldog Davey Boy Smith defeated Bret Hart for the Intercontinental Championship in front of a rowdy home crowd. There were many callbacks to SummerSlam 92 leading up to and during the Clash at the Castle, including Bret Hart present for the occasion. The match between Bret Hart and Davey Boy Smith is not only historic, but perhaps Bret Hart’s masterpiece. He had to carry Davey Boy throughout the contest.
UPDATE: 2023/07/16 11:00AM EST BY ANDREW KELLY
The Wembley classic between Bret Hart and Davey Boy Smith for the Intercontinental Championship at the 1992 SummerSlam PPV event is fondly remembered by WWE fans as one of the greatest of all time. However, as successful as it was, the match came with a lot of baggage and controversy. On the surface this match was an instant hit, but below the belt it was actually much more difficult, especially for Bret Hart. This match would also cause a lot of trouble for Smith, whose WWE career went precipitously downhill after what on paper was the biggest win of his entire career.
Davey Boy Smith was not in the right frame of mind before the SummerSlam Match
Bret Hart recounted the whole story in his outstanding book, Hitman: My Real Life in the Cartoon World of Wrestling. It was Bret’s idea to have him and Davey attend the main event, and he told Vince McMahon that no one would be able to follow them. He had the perfect ending in mind and Vince wanted it to be a surprise. Bret’s reputation was on the line, only for Bret to discover that Davey Boy had been partying and doing drugs with Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart in the weeks leading up to the show. Neidhart took Davey to the airport to fly to England, claiming that he was “high as a kite” when he boarded the plane.
Naturally, Bret was afraid that Davey would make them both look bad, so Bret put together the entire match and had Davey recite all the moves for him the night before. Bret had done everything he could. Wembley Stadium was packed to the brim with over 80,000 screaming fans and filled with the sound of annoying air horns. The match started with Davey outpointing Bret with some simple wrestling holds, but after just a few minutes, Davey was breathing incredibly hard.
Davey Boy Smith Forgot The Entire Game With Bret Hart Mere Minutes In
“Bret, I’m fooled. I can’t remember anything!” Dave Boy said. “Davey, just listen to me. I’ll take you.” Bret Hart proceeded to bring up all of Davey’s high points, even helping him with facial expressions, doing his best to help Davey conserve his energy for his return at the end. Hitman played more of a heel under the circumstances, and was on offense for most of the match. The crowd was completely behind Davey, just as Bret designed, and the drama continued to build layer by layer, prompting referee Joey Marella to say “Y’all hear that crowd? This is awesome!” Bret took it as far as he could go and Davey took control for the long awaited comeback.
Davey hit Bret with his trademark Powerslam for a huge nearfall, followed by Bret hitting a German Suplex for a nearfall of his own. After a double clothesline, both men lay down on the mat as Marella began her 10 count. While still on the mat, Bret began to lock Davey’s legs together, lifting him up and turning him into a sniper on the mat! middle of the ring! He was easily one of the best executed snipers of all time.
Bret Hart vs. Davey Boy Smith had a perfect ending
While in the sharpshooter, Davey Boy reached the ropes, becoming the first person to escape the hold, and caused an explosion in the crowd. Soon after, it was time to go home. Bret squeezed Davey’s wrist as a signal for him to flip Bret onto the ropes. Bret prepared to do a sunset somersault, but instead of backing up, Davey Boy fell forward, grabbing both of Bret’s legs for the 1, 2, 3. The old Leo Burke finish, as Bret called it. Just like he drew it.
“I’ve always believed that this was my best match, especially since I carried Davey the whole time without anyone noticing,” Bret said in his book. “My dad would tell me later that it’s one thing to have a great game, but it’s another thing to have a great game in front of eighty thousand people.”
SummerSlam 1992 match led to firing of Davey Boy Smith
Although Davey Boy Smith v. Bret Hart is considered one of the greatest SummerSlam matches of all time, and certainly one of the best of both men’s careers, it was also a match that may have been a catalyst for the end of Davey’s time in WWE. As noted, Bulldog’s conditioning was not very good, and drink and drug use had made him a liability. This led to WWE no longer considering him a top star, and sparked controversy between the two sides.
The relationship between Davey and WWE became increasingly fractured throughout the year, before Davey dropped the Intercontinental Championship and was released shortly thereafter. Amid the steroids controversy and more, there were likely several reasons for Davey’s WWE departure in 1992, but a large part of it stemmed from the SummerSlam 1992 main event debacle with Bret Hart. Even the pinnacle of his professional wrestling career came with the sobering fact that he was never trusted to hold a prominent position or to be a world champion, despite often being on the periphery of stardom over the course of it. of his career.
His WWE story wasn’t over though, as he eventually returned to Vince McMahon’s company in 1997 and 1999 prior to The Attitude Era, though he was clearly far from his prime at this point as the years hadn’t passed. been nice to him. Had he entered SummerSlam with a clearer mind and less controversy, the match might have been even better, and he might even have found himself in the main event scene soon after.