The OEM shock bushings are in two pieces. You can remove the bushings that way, then there is enough room to rotate the shock out of the bracket without bending. Of course, you will still have to bend the bracket to put the replacement in, as the new ones are not made that way. It should take a 3/4" wrench to remove the nut.
Meddle not in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy, and taste good with ketchup.