WrestlingInc.com owner Raj Giri interviewed hardcore wrestling legend Tommy Dreamer this week. During the wide-ranging conversation, Giri asked Dreamer about his thoughts on the imminent return of Matt Hardy's "Broken" gimmick, as well as his training seminar next Wednesday, December 8th at "The Academy: School of Professional Wrestling".
The last time Hardy truly appeared in his "Broken" persona was at one of Dreamer's House of Hardcore shows in April. Since returning to the WWE, he has sparingly made gestures here and there, but on this week's RAW he teased that the gimmick will be returning soon. Dreamer said he believes the gimmick will work in the WWE and Hardy can return to the level of popularity he achieved a year ago.
"You think about one year ago, Matt Hardy was probably the hottest wrestler out there He was probably the last good thing to watch on TNA, and I'm not saying that as a slight to TNA, but he was unique, he was different, he was a character," Dreamer said. "How he tweeted, how he did everything was in full 'Deletion' mode and I used Matt all the time. We had an unwritten contract of, 'Hey I have shows, you're booked on them unless someone's gonna pay you more money.' Matt was, just like me, killing it all over wrestling every weekend on the indies. But he was the hottest character, and if they give him that freedom and let him be him with that, he'll become one of the hottest stars they have again."
Dreamer said he sees both Matt and Jeff Hardy as more than a retro act. He thinks if they're allowed to have free reign with the "Broken" gimmick, the WWE will greatly benefit.
"When Matt and Jeff came back, it was awesome, I love Matt and Jeff," Dreamer said. "You can't look at them how WWE is viewing them as a retro act, and yes they were hot and they're ladder match was awesome, [but] you can't [say], 'Oh they're here to get the younger guys over.' They still have a lot of gas left in the tank as performers... I could just see WWE profiting from merchandise and 'Delete' signs, you name it. They give him the ball and Matt will deliver it."
Dreamer also discussed his upcoming House of Hardcore event that will feature Candice Michelle's farewell match. Dreamer said it was important to him the give the fans a chance to say goodbye to Michelle.
"She's been training her butt off and she's so excited. The real reason why I did it, and the same when I did to Beulah, she got so nervous and she was like, 'What if fans don't remember?' And Traci Brooks said the same thing. And I said wrestling fans remember everything," he said. "I remember seeing both of these people who were so far removed from wrestling and happy that they have kids, balling their eyes out again in the wrestling ring. Not only does the wrestler need closure, but so do the wrestling fans, and I love that. The wrestling fans should be able to say goodbye to Candice Michelle and say thank you for all you've done and for all the great memories you've given us. And they should do that for everybody."
A former WWE women's champion, Michelle hasn't wrestled in a long time. Dreamer said he was willing to accommodate any of her requests and she's committed to getting back into wrestling shape so she can put on a great performance.
"Me and her have been friends for years. I knew I had this event, and I knew it was in her hometown... She's a Wisconsin girl," he said. "And I said, 'Hey, I'm doing a show, I want to know if you're interested in having one more match. You tell me what you want to do, and I will do it. If you want to a a mixed tag, me and you vs. somebody. You pick your opponent, you pick whatever you want to do, or if you want to do singles. Originally I put on the table me and her vs. Carlito and Victoria or Victoria and Stevie Richards. I'll get whoever you want.' She was actually in tears and she said, 'I can't believe you're thinking of me.' I said, 'Well, I'm thinking of you because I want to put butts in seats, but I also want to do that for you.'
"She picked one last singles with Victoria, and she's been training her butt off. She's gotten herself in amazing shape and I've seen pictures of her. She's a mother of three who hasn't wrestled in years and she'll send pictures of her with the bruises and she's like, 'Why are you doing this to me,' and I'm like, 'I'm not doing anything to you, you didn't have to do anything.' She's taking it very seriously, which I love."
House of Hardcore will be at the Waukesha County Expo in Waukesha, WI for Blizzard Brawl 2017 on Saturday, Dec. 2 with doors opening at 5:30 p.m. and bell-time at 7:00 p.m. The full card includes Candice Michelle vs. Lisa Marie Varon, Austin Aries vs. Joey Mercury, Al Snow & Swoggle (with Dave Herro) vs. The Squad, and Hardcore War: Tommy Dreamer vs. Abyss.
Dreamer will also be hosting a seminar at "The Academy: School of Professional Wrestling" on Dec. 8. All are welcome from those with no pro-wrestling training, to established wrestlers looking to expand their knowledge and take their game to the next level. For more information, click here.