patriotic question

I realize this is jumping ahead slightly on 1997 wwf, but, why was the Patriot put into a WWF Title feud with Bret Hart seemingly out of nowhere?  I remembered him at the time from Global and from teaming a few years earlier with Bagwell, but, was he one of the most 'where did he come from contenders' you can recall?  Was it a message to anyone unhappy in WCW that if you jump to us we will push you, or was the roster that barren?

​Patriot was a guy with something of a name who could be slotted into the natural Bret Hart feud for MURICA, but wasn't big enough of a name to where Bret couldn't beat him like a drum when it came time for the bad guy to win. I was always fine with it.​