Matt Hardy Thinks John Laurinaitis Enjoyed Releasing Him From WWE In 2005

The long-maligned John Laurinaitis has his fair share of detractors in the wrestling world. Larunaitis spent a large portion of time as WWE's Executive Vice President of Talent Relations, a role he was released from in August. On the "Extreme Life of Matt Hardy" podcast, Hardy spoke on working with him, and the respect he has for him now. But things weren't always good between the two.

"John Laurinaitis and I, we had a lot of issues. I felt like whenever he called to release me in 2005, I felt like he was getting a little bit of enjoyment out of it because he's like, 'this guy clashed with me and he questioned my judgment," Hardy said.

His issues with Laurinaitis mainly stemmed from his early heel work in WWE after breaking off from his brother, Jeff Hardy. He said that Laurinaitis wanted him to be more "straightforwardly" a heel including him using more underhanded tactics. He said he wanted to be a heel but wanted to maintain a balance because, at the end of the day, he was "going up against a beast in Jeff Hardy."

However, despite issues with the EVP in the early 2000s, Hardy said he has had no issues with Laurinatis since his return to WWE in 2017. He went so far as to say he was "absolutely cool with him," while highlighting the tough aspects of Laurinaitis' former position.

"He was ultimately the bad guy for Vince McMahon. Vince McMahon doesn't need to give people the bad news. [...] That's John Laurinaitis' job. So that's a tough job. It's a very thankless job in many ways, too," Hardy said, "So at the end of the day, I've had my issues with John Laurinaitis, but I'm okay with John Lauriniatis now, and I'm fine with him. I have respect for him."