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  October 3, 1998



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Split decision on Sting fling
By BRET "THE HIT MAN" HART -- For the Calgary Sun

 I've always publicly acknowledged the motivational power I find in the support of my fans.

  It's important to never forget where you came from, who made it possible for you to get where you are and where you're going.

  I've always taken the opinions of my fans seriously. I read my fan mail. I've strived to live up to your expectations, as well as my own, and in most situations, they turned out to be one and the same.

  Until now.

  Now it's my fans who are asking Why Bret, Why?

  I have a mountain of letters asking me why I beat up Sting. Why I seem to have thrown my integrity out the window. Why I'm aligned with Hollywood Hulk Hogan. Why I seem to have betrayed my fans. Most of the letters are articulate, moving pleas that convey heartbroken disappointment and confusion. Some are profane, even threatening and the irony is that their writers are oblivious to the hypocrisy in their demand that I live up to their standards.

  I have another mountain of mail. It's filled with congratulatory praise asking why I didn't do this sooner! Why I didn't make a tougher stand for myself as soon as I got to the WCW. Why I let them get away with not giving me a title shot for the 11 months I've been there. They say it's about time.

  I wondered how I can still live up to the expectations of all my fans because, as a group, you are divided and as individuals you are passionate.

  I gave it a lot of thought and came to the conclusion that the only answer is to continue to be true to myself.

  Fans have always gotten behind me because I fight for what I feel is right. You may not always agree with my maneuverings of the moment, but you know that no matter what happens, The Hitman will never give up and in the long run he'll get where he's going.

  And where he's going has always been and always will be to the top, the world heavyweight championship.

  As always, I'll do whatever it takes. You have to have faith. For me, doing whatever it takes does not include betraying my fans. It does include doing whatever is necessary in the ring against guys who also will do -- and have done -- whatever it takes.

  Sting isn't always a good guy. The Hitman hasn't always been a good guy. Just look at some old tapes of The Hart Foundation and it's clear that I was born good with a desire to be bad. I didn't do anything to Sting that he wouldn't have done to me if he thought it would get him closer to the World title.

  I suppose I could be accused of selling out a friendship in pursuit of the title, but I don't see that as a valid argument. If you were offered a promotion at your job, would you pass it up because the guy who works alongside you is your friend and he wants the raise as much as you do? Would he pass up the job for you? Wrestling is a strange business, but there is a method to the madness. Sting was my friend. But then again, so is Hollywood Hulk Hogan.

  The way I look at it is that I've been stabbed in the back by one promoter and that's one too many. I came into WCW with the promise of a title shot that I still haven't seen and I've learned where blind loyalty gets you.

  Hogan also came into WCW as a hero and got dumped on. In our mutual understanding of what that betrayal feels like, we've found a common bond.

  Yet in our mutual quest to be champion, we'll always be rivals.

  The saying goes that with friends like that, you don't need any enemies. In the wrestling business today, it's unfortunate that there's no difference.

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