This is a question I keep asking myself again and again especially now both Hardys Boys are in TNA. These two men were pretty much guaranteed entrance into the Hall Of Fame. Together they helped redefine tag team wrestling. They along with The Dudley Boyz, Edge and Christian created some of the greatest and most memorable moments and matches in wrestling history twice being voted PWI’s match of the year. Seperately they won almost everything they could between them and despite this something went wrong and now they would be lucky to be seen in the WWE ever again.
Jeff managed a clean sweep of at least one WWE, World Heavyweight, Intercontinental, European, Hardcore, Light Heavyweight title to go along with his six WWF/WWE and even one WCW tag team titles. Whilst never the most gifted man on the mic he has always had an undeniable charisma when it came to performing. I have never been a die hard Jeff fan but always found him interesting. He has a unique and interesting wrestling style even by the standards of the modern day high flying indy guys and has put his body on the line more times and in more ways than even the hardest of hardcore wrestlers. That really is the root of Jeff’s problem. He takes risks and shocking people to a new level. His mind set when it comes to things that could harm him is suprisingly casual. He seems to rarely say no to any high spot and even had Abyss try and talk him out of some of his crazier stuff during his first run in TNA.
Jeff’s other big problem has been drugs which he has also never made any secret about. It cost him his job with the WWE back in 2003 when his work started deteriorating and he was no-showing events and was a similar story in 2009. Both times Jeff refused to go to rehab. The sad thing is just how big a star he was second time around and the career he could have had. I feel I need to make it clear I’m not strictest person when it comes to drug or alcohol use nor do I claim to be a model of what a person should be. I like Jeff am not perfect and won’t ever claim to be. That said I’m not a global superstar or a role model. The other thing that both infuriates and upsets me is the attitude Jeff has to people that want to help him. Twice he has been given the chance to get help whilst in the WWE and both times he threw it back in their face. Ok, that is a tad understandable. WWE have made it clear when it comes to any drug problems that may or may not be work related their first priority is their own image and will normally distance themselves as much as possible unless it is in thier own interests to do otherwise which given Jeff’s status in 2009 seems to apply. Fine. Not the smartest move but somewhat understandable. The thing I take offense to is when Jeff says things like ‘ F*ck all those people who believed I turned up to a PPV out of it’ which is what he did recently. Im sorry Jeff but when you have a history of doing that type of thing, have shown no sign of changing and get caught with a small pharmacy in your house what are fans going to think. The reason it gets smeared all over the internet and commented on by fans isn’t because we want to see you crash and burn it’s because we want you to be okay and not another drug/wrestling horror story. Believe it or not we also want TNA to succeed and bringing that sort of attention to the company, which a lot of other hard working men and women have spent trying to build isn’t going to help.
Matt Hardy is a whole different kind of crazy. He has always been seen as the more sensible of the two brothers which is probably what hampered his career to an extent. He never really won any major singles titles in the WWE although he did win the ECW, US and European titles. WWE seemed to view him as a solid mid card guy and nothing more. There is nothing inherently wrong with that and Matt seemed to accept that as his niche up untill 2010 when things started getting strange. Jeff had been out of the WWE for several months and had jumped ship to TNA. It became appearent Matt wanted to follow. There were lots of rumours spreading around the net sparkd by videos Matt was posting on Youtube supposedly slating the WWE. I only saw one and it didn’t seem to fit with what I heard. In it Matt calmly said he felt he had done all he could in WWE and lost some of the passion, he was getting older and wanted to try new things, possibly even start a family like his brother had. Nothing crazy about that. In fact it was a totally reasonable thing to do considering where he was in his life.He even said his decision had nothing to do with any backstage problems, namely the Edge situation which he claimed had long been resolved and was greatful to the WWE for everything they had done for him. The problems really surfaced soon afterwards though when it became clear Matt was out of shape and even managed to get himself sent home from a european tour. It seemed Matt had decided he wanted out of his contract and was going to do what he had to, unprofessionally or not. Naturally WWE let him go seeing no worth in putting up with his crap and not really needing him anyway. Soon after a video appeared online of both Hardys in a diner somewhere. Jeff was less than sober and rambling on about CM Punk. when it cut to Matt he went to the same old thing he always does, Lita. His thing with her is weird, kind of sad and borders on pathetic and creepy. It seems even though he claims to be over the whole thing, no matter what argument or problem he is having he has to bring her into it. Whatever his feelings are towards her he needs to deal with them and move on. That may be easier said than done but come on, it’s been over five years.
The thing is now both men are in TNA. Really TNA should know better and have more respect for itself. Hiring two more and really it needs to be said ‘has beens’ will not help TNA. Not all press is good press and TNA has enough problems as it is without throwing more into the mix. If the people in TNA cared about either Hardy, when they joined someone should have taken each one to the side and pointed at Scott Hall who ironically returned at the same time as Jeff during the ‘Monday Night Skirmish’. He was a bloated mess who could barely work and was becoming a laughing stock. They should have pointed at him and said ” That will be you if you don’t change soon”. But niether Hardy would listen anyway. Jeff was already in trouble with the law when he turned up and looks destined to spend some amount of time in jail. Matt now seems to have the freedom he probably wants but doesn’t need. And he gets to be a big fish in a small pond with his brother and buddies.
I think the main reason the Hardys got here is they never grew up. They started wrestling in their own organization with their buddies, essentially playing wrestler and now they like playing rockstar. For some reason they have a persecution complex and keep acting like misunderstood artists that no one knows but are out to get when really all most fans want to do is see them succeed and live long healthy lives. Even Gregory Healms seems to want in on the act by attacking HBK and Chris Jericho for what seems to be the most pathetic of reasons. And seriously, if you were going to attack a pair of wrestlers going for two of the greatest and most popular when your career highlight was literally playing a crappy superhero in an industry of fake supermen is pretty stupid.
Jeff has said before that his ‘ Demons’ aren’t like everyone elses and aren’t negative. He sees them more as pals he can hang around and presumably do drugs with. Whether that is an act or not (evidence points to the former) that kind of thinking is likely to end up one of a few ways and most aren’t good. He has a kid now and as a fan who has seen too many tragedies I truly hope I don’t see another one here.