Matt Hardy Talks Changes In Business From Attitude Era, If He Signed With TNA Too Soon, More

Hardy: You know what? I wish I could disagree with you and say you are off base, but I think you're right on the money, man. A lot of times, if a guy goes off on his own and really gets over, really establishes himself with something that was his idea, sometimes they don't accept it as their own idea. That's just the way things are.

Zack Ryder is a perfect idea. I actually just did an interview recently with Maryland Championship Wrestling in Baltimore and they actually brought up the name Zack Ryder to me and I said he was one that really took it upon himself. He went from being one of the Edgeheads to creating his own identity. He started doing the Youtube videos.

He did it. He started using real smart, insider terminology and he got himself over. Right now, he is one of the most over guys on the roster, no doubts about it. But if you watch him, and he was off Raw for 5 or 6 weeks, but the way the fans love him and respond to him doesn't equate to the way he's being used on television.

WrestlingINC: Another thing, I started watching wrestling around the same time as you, WrestleMania III, WrestleMania IV. But, I've never seen so many top stars leaving on their own, wanting to leave. Rob Van Dam, Chris Jericho. You've got so many top guys that are fine with leaving on top or leaving at the peaks of their careers. What made up your mind about wanting to leave in 2010.

Hardy: My body was just really injured. I had a lot more injuries than what was seen on camera. ... My body was beat up, especially my back and hips. I had bumps, bruises, a lot of scar tissue on my back and hips. It was just my body being beat up and knowing that I had so much stress and pressure on me, knowing I would have 5 days a week and two years before I was finished. I was just at the point of cracking. Looking at it now, I just feel so good and so mentally and emotionally healthy. Physically, I have healed and I do feel better. But just knowing now that I make my own schedule, I can actually decide if I'm OK to work, 1-3 days. Just knowing I can control my own schedule and I have a say in what I'm doing. I just needed a break, man. More than anything else, I was just really burned out from that kind of schedule.

WrestlingINC: Do you think you signed with TNA too soon? Do you think you needed more of a break away from the business?

Hardy: Yes, it absolutely was. They offered me a contract that was really good and I knew I would be reunited with Jeff. So, I thought that was going to be OK, but it definitely was too soon. I just needed time off, man. I needed a year off at a minimum. One person I can say really stuck to his guns with that theory is Chris Jericho. He'll work for three years and then he'll take off for a year or a year and a half. He stays very disciplined regardless of what is offered or thrown at him. He has a lot of outside interests and hobbies. I look at him and I have to give him a thumbs up for doing that because I think it's the way to keep yourself both healthy and happy. It's a way not to be burned out both physically and emotionally.

WrestlingINC: Definitely. You had a rough time last year, but it seems like you've really turned things around as of late with all these independent appearances and all these fans sending in great reports. What do you think has kind of caused this turn-around?

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