At WrestleMania 33 this past Sunday, both Matt and Jeff Hardy made their return to WWE and seemed to only slightly play up their “broken” characters. Now, it looks like we have an update on Matt’s iconic persona possibly coming to WWE. The Broken gimmick was seen as one of the best gimmicks in years, and it was certainly one of the best things in pro-wrestling in 2016.
Many WWE fans randomly came across this gimmick from TNA Wrestling, and they knew of Matt Hardy from his time in WWE. It was weird to see casual fans of wrestling coming in contact with a place like TNA, but Matt Hardy was the main reason for it. TNA needed a shot in the arm at this time to stay afloat. People were talking about Pop TV possibly dropping them before the end of the year, and it was really a big issue for the brand.
Then Matt Hardy happened, and his broken gimmick was exploited as much as possible in TNA. It worked well for TNA, but eventually, Dixie Carter realized she had to sell her majority stake in the company. WWE was in line to buy the company, but they were only willing to pay what they felt the TNA library was worth as nothing else TNA had was of any use to the McMahon and company. This left the WWE offer at $8 million. Anthem Sports and Entertainment would offer more, give Dixie a spot in the company where she couldn’t do any harm, and then Anthem became the majority owners.
This left them in an awkward position. Anthem had to pay for all the contracts of every single TNA Superstar. Matt and Jeff Hardy were the biggest stars TNA had that were willing to work full-time. They had a huge year and deserved to be paid well. Anthem did not do that with either Hardy brother. They originally agreed to a new deal in December of 2016, but a few things needed to be altered for them to re-sign.
They wanted the deal to be for one year, with a pay increase due to it being lower than they wanted. Anthem then bought the company in the new year officially, which killed off that chance. They then offered, after being highly disrespectful to both men, a new deal. Matt Hardy tried to make things work, but they did not want to play ball. They even tried to add in a 10 percent indie fee that would force Hardy to pay Anthem 10 percent of whatever he made on the independent scene.
Hardy had become massively popular for independent companies since he became Broken Matt Hardy. This allowed him to get good money in the indies. Anthem knew that, so they wanted to force him to give them a cut in his new deal. Hardy’s lawyer told him it would be nuts for him to sign the deal so that put both Hardy brothers out of TNA. They would go to Ring of Honor Wrestling, where they would use their broken characters, but then Anthem claimed that they owned the broken universe.
This is in spite of the fact that Matt Hardy invented the entire gimmick and claimed to have trademarked it. The back and forth over the characters has been going on since the Hardy brothers left TNA. Matt Hardy and Anthem will battle in court for the rights to the broken universe for now. However, WWE wants to use it. They simply do not want to go with it until they know Hardy owns the full rights and has it from the court system. This will keep them out of the legal issues involving only Matt Hardy and Anthem.
WWE wants to use the broken universe, but it’ll just take time. In the meantime, Matt Hardy wanted to keep the character in kayfabe lock-up. Hardy claimed on Twitter he had found a possible cure for his broken condition.
“The sheer NIRVANA of coming home to that DEAFENING ovation at
#Wrestlemania seems to have contained my CONDISHTION. If it CAN be contained.”
Matt Hardy is referring to the massive ovation he and Jeff got from the Orlando crowd for their surprise WrestleMania return. This is a cool kayfabe plan. Hardy is saying this so that it gives him a way to put the broken one away for a bit. Then, when the ordeal with Anthem is over, he can always bring it back. Plus this will give WWE a good ability to reintroduce the Hardy brothers to the WWE fans who do not know them as well. Then the hardcore fans still see a great team return to WWE.
Eventually, WWE can bring the broken universe into the company, and that, in the end, will allow them to tell a story similar to what we saw Matt Hardy do in TNA. The WWE fans can be the ones who watch an entirely new origin story be told with Matt Hardy becoming broken once more, which will be fun for the company to do. WWE fans will surely be into it.
[Featured Image By WWE]