Man "Just Felt Like It Was The Right Moment" To Attack WWE's Bret Hart
By R.J. Johnson - @rickerthewriter
April 8, 2019
Authorities say a 26-year-old man who allegedly rushed into the ring and assaulted wrestling super star Bret 'The Hitman' Hart while he was delivering a speech at a WWE Hall of Fame ceremony, is facing assault and trespassing charges.
Zachary Madsen, 26, is being held by police after telling them that he "just felt like it was the right moment," to attack Hart at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York on Saturday.
Madsen was ordered held on $1,500 bond at his arraignment on assault and criminal trespassing charges in Brooklyn criminal court. The judge also issued a protection order against Madsen to Hart and the WWE security guard, Thaddeus Jones, who was also injured in the attack.
The incident was not a "work" (the wrestling term for the story lines presented as real to fans) with the WWE describing Madsen as an "over-exuberant fan."
"An over-exuberant fan surpassed our security at ringside and made his way briefly into the ring," WWE told ESPN in a statement. "The individual has been turned over to the proper authorities."
This is probably the best angle of the incident involving a fan (and I use that term loosely) attacking Bret Hart. Disgusting. This guy deserved everything he got in the aftermath. Glad to hear Bret was OK and able to resume his speech. #WWEHOFhttps://t.co/6j1Rf8pkMb pic.twitter.com/pXwDdcIo6s— Chamatkar Sandhu (@SandhuMMA) April 7, 2019
Hart was previously inducted into the WWE's Hall of Fame for his solo work with Saturday's ceremony to induct 'The Hart Foundation,' a tag-team Hart formed with his brother-in-law, Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart, in the mid-1980s. As Hart was delivering his speech, Madsen allegedly jumped on stage, and tackled the 61-year-old former wrestling super star.
Rhonda Rousey's husband, UFC heavyweight Travis Browne was joined by several other wrestling stars who jumped into the ring to pull the man off Hart.
The live broadcast of the Hall of Fame ceremony quickly cut away from the melee, confirming to many at home that the incident was a shoot (a wrestling term for an unscripted, real-life occurrence in the ring).
This isn't Madsen's first run-in with the law. Last September, the 24-year-old was busted for allegedly stalking mixed-martial artist Haris Talundzic, according to Lincoln Police Department records.
Hart resumed and finished his speech after the ring was cleared.