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

Owen's death still haunts Hitman


By JOE WARMINGTON -- Toronto Sun

JUST FOOLIN' ... Bret Hart massages TV host Mike Bullard's neck, "Hitman" style. Photo by Steve Uhraney, courtesy Open Mike.
His voice is soft and quiet, if not sombre, as he speaks.

"I am down," Bret Hart admits.

You can see it in his eyes. The guy's hurting.

He's just finished his appearance on Open Mike with Mike Bullard when he says he has "a lot a headaches." It's been that way since he was kicked accidentally in the head by fellow WCW star Goldberg.

But the true source of his depression surrounds last May's tragic death of his wrestler brother Owen. "It's an on-going, constant anguish," the proud Calgarian tells me. "There is pain. It has messed everything up."

Despite that, he tries to fulfill his obligations to his fans and to his publisher to promote his new book, The Best There is, the Best There Was and the Best There Ever Will Be, which by the way he wrote with The Sun's own sports talent, Perry Lefko.

The nice thing about writing any kind of story about The Hitman is you know millions of people are going to read it. With the advent of the Internet, anything on Canadian stars like Hart, Wayne Gretzky, Shania Twain or Bryan Adams seems to draw e-mails from all over the world.

But Bret tells me, after months of dizziness, he's thinking this "may be the end of my career."

So the big question is what's next for Bret Hart? He's not sure himself, although he admits there are movie deals and other opportunities in the works.

Perhaps he could follow the footsteps of another famous wrestler and enter the arena of politics and even someday become premier of Alberta.

"I would never say no," he says. "But I think that is even a tougher ring to be in than wrestling."

But before he thinks too much about his future, he's dealing with today's problems and challenges for now.

"I have been going to a lot of Calgary Hitmen hockey games," he said when asked what's helping him get through. "And (tonight) I am going to the Raptors game. I am looking forward to meeting Vince Carter for a couple of minutes."

He's also got a call into his pal, Tie Domi, who he hopes will pass along a get-well card he's signed for Bryan Berard. "I feel sick about it," he said of Berard's injuries. "It broke my heart."

More on Bret Hart

More on Owen Hart