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READER ALERT: For all the latest wrestling happenings, check out our News & Rumours section.

Sable lawsuit another example of WWF exploitation -- Hart brother


 CALGARY (CP) -- A dispute between pro-wrestling champion Sable and the World Wrestling Federation is another example of the WWF exploiting its grapplers and the wrestling genre, says a member of the famed Hart wrestling family.

Sable is suing the WWF for $110 million US, complaining it wanted her to participate in a lesbian storyline, expose her breasts on TV and appear in sexually degrading photos.

"It doesn't surprise me she might have been asked (to strip)," said Ross Hart, whose brother Owen Hart died last month during wrestling stunt.

"(The WWF's) portrayal of women has not been very feminist."

The Hart family is contemplating its own legal action over the death Owen Hart, a professional wrestler known as the Blue Blazer.

During a May 23 pay-per-view event, the Calgary native fell more than 21 metres to his death while being lowered to the ring on a cable.

Sable's lawsuit, filed in U.S. federal court, claims professional wrestling has become increasingly "obscene, titillating, vulgar and unsafe."

Another of Owen's brothers echoed Sable's sentiments. "They resort to all kinds of disgusting stuff which just shows they don't have much imagination," said Smith Hart.

But he also accused Sable of exploiting his brother's death, noting the timing of the lawsuit.

"If she wants $110 million, (Owen's widow) Martha and her estate should sue for $110 billion," he said.

"All she has to say to stripping is 'no thanks.' This is opportunistic manipulation."

Known for her waist-length hair and revealing outfits, Sable, whose real name is Rena Mero, said the WWF stripped her of her championship belt by scripting her defeat in a televised match three weeks ago.

Her downfall came, she claims, after she repeatedly refused to have her gown torn off on national television, exposing her breasts.

Jerry McDevitt, a lawyer for the WWF, said Mero's allegations are absolutely untrue. "It's the legal equivalent of a rabbit punch," he said.

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