WWE Hall of Famer Kurt Angle spoke about his favorite personal performances outside of WWE on the latest edition of his podcast (Kurt Angle Show), which included the Olympic Hero’s showdown with Samoa Joe at TNA Lockdown in 2008, and his high-stakes singles-bout with Japanese legend Yuji Nagta in NJPW. Angle also names Bret “The Hitman” Hart as the greatest wrestler of all-time. Highlights are below.
Names NJPW matchup as one of his favorite outside of WWE:
“I had some great ones in TNA, but I do have to say Yuji Nagata in New Japan Pro Wrestling in I believe 2008. One of my best performances of all time. What’s crazy is Yuji and I never worked together or locked horns before that day. That was the first time we ever touched each other, and the chemistry was unreal. His facial expressions and his selling were out of this world. It reminded me a lot of The Undertaker when his eyes would go up in his head. Yuji Nagata, when I had a submission hold on him, he put his eyes up in his head and it kind of freaked me out. It was like, wow, this guy is doing the full monty. He pulled out all the stops, and our technique was incredibly good. We just had great chemistry and that whole match flowed. We had false finishes and submissions, and it was definitely my best match I did in Japan and my best match outside of WWE.”
Calls Bret “The Hitman” Hart the greatest wrestler of all time:
“I believe he is the greatest wrestler of all time. I believe his in-ring performance, there was nobody better. I would say Shawn Michaels and Chris Benoit are close, even myself too, but I still put Bret up there. Don’t get me wrong, Ric Flair needs to be up there too because he’s the man and his technique was superior. Ric was a great wrestler that could get people interested in the psychology of the match, and he was also very entertaining and took a lot of crazy Ric Flair bumps – the bump off the top of the rope. You knew what he was gonna do, and he was different in his technique. Bret Hart was just the best overall technician I’ve ever seen in my life.”
On facing Samoa Joe at TNA Lockdown in 2008:
“That is one of my favorite matches outside of WWE. That’s the one I would’ve talked about had I not picked Yuji Nagata. Samoa Joe was just very physical. You knew you were in for a hard night when you were wrestling Samoa Joe because he’s gonna lay everything in, and he’s a big dude. I love that type of physical wrestling, and I was right there with him doing it.”