Background: Following the Bret Hart-led Hart Foundation formation, Hart and his band of brothers (in blood, marriage and friendship) took the fight to some of the WWF’s top stars and the United States’ current social climate. Returning to Canada, The Hart Foundation took on WWF Heavyweight champion The Undertaker (replacing Shawn Michaels) and WWF Tag Team champions “Stone Cold” Steve Austin & Dude Love in a match where the winning team would only be declared when someone retrieved their “home” country’s flag.
Halifax, Nova Scotia
July 21, 1997
Bret Hart, Owen Hart & Davey Boy Smith vs. The Undertaker, Steve Austin & Dude Love
The Tag Team champs rushed the ring even though they were in a two-on-one situation. The end result was a thrashing at the hands of all The Foundation until the point Owen Hart easily scaled the ropes to go after his flag. Just as the show went a commercial break, The Undertaker’s music hit to bring out “The Phenom”.
Dude Love was making a roaring comeback when the show returned, slamming Owen’s fact against the turnbuckles before making a tag to The Undertaker. “The Deadman” threw Owen around with ease, going for an instinctive pin after the Chokeslam. Austin picked up where his partners left off, punching and suplexing Owen as the Canadian fans rallied behind their guy. The American fan favorites were cheating like dastardly villains to keep Owen grounded in “Stone Cold’s” rear chin lock. When “The King of Harts” elbowed his way out of the hold, Dude Love tagged in and utilized a low blow to stop the Intercontinental champion’s ascent toward the Canadian flag. Love spent too much time dancing to agonize the crowd, giving Owen the chance to counter the neck breaker into a DDT before mounting his fellow champion for a series of right hands aimed at Dude’s face. Love, scurrying to his corner, tagged out to Austin. Blocking Steve Austin’s attempt at a superplex didn’t help Owen as another commercial break began.
Once again it was Dude Love in the ring with Owen as the fans rallied behind the valiant “King of Harts”. Breaking free of another chin lock, Owen – with his boot about to fall off thanks to a broken shoestring – accidentally kicked Love into a Steve Austin tag. The arrogance of “Stone Cold” cost him as he tried to put the Sharpshooter on the submission master. Kicking and clotheslining his way to the Foundation’s corner, Owen attained a blind tag from his brother, Bret.
The crowd was on its feet as Bret connected with haymaker after haymaker to set up that figure four leg lock around the steel ring post. Thankfully for Austin, Love was there to clobber Bret. The Undertaker tagged in, attacking his opponents until Bret initiated a fistfight that ended with both men throwing explosive clotheslines. The Undertaker was the first to recover, going for the U.S. flag. The other Hart Foundation member in Brian Pillman ran out to stop The Undertaker’s climb. The referee had lost control until he saw Bret Hart retrieve the Canadian flag for the victory.
Winner: Bret Hart, Owen Hart & Davey Boy Smith (12:22)
Is It A Classic: Like many moments during the WWF’s “Border Wars” storyline, this match was made more special thanks to the fans who were going crazy for everything that happened. The action wasn’t anything truly special, but it sure felt important.