During an interview with Dan LaGreca and Bully Ray on the Busted Open Podcast, Matt Hardy opened up about signing with AEW. Hardy discussed how much fun he’s had since signing with the company in March.
“Yes, it’s extremely fun,” Hardy said. “I think the thing that’s so fun about it is that you’re given this platform and this scenario to create as an artist and as an artist it’s very important if you’re passionate to translate your vision through to what you’re doing. And if you can do that it’s so much more entertaining and it’s not like a job, it’s fun.
“This love of your life hobby that you have and you’re able to do that here and they listen to your feedback. Guys help one another, it’s such a positive environment in so many ways. There’s so many young guys I can help and teach and just help improve their game as time goes on and improve the product while doing that.”
At WrestleMania 33, The Hardy Boyz made one of the most memorable and highly anticipated returns to WWE as special additions to a Triple Threat Tag Team Ladder Match to win the Raw Tag Team Championships. Shortly after their return, Jeff Hardy got injured, leaving Matt to be on his own and be rarely used. Hardy talked about his frustrations with WWE during that time and explained how this led to him knowing he shouldn’t re-sign with the company no matter how much they offered him.
“It’s extremely frustrating obviously,” Hardy said. “I knew what I was getting into going back there and just with the way things went back I knew it was a roll of the dice but let’s give it a shot. Maybe things will be different, you know the system. Their mentality is that once they have something set in their head of who you are, even towards the end when they tried to sign me, I know in the machine’s head what I am and what my role is going to be. I had to leave, regardless of how much money they would offer I had to turn it down because I would rather go somewhere else and be on this platform and create and I could be happy.”
Hardy also ranked his currently job and role with AEW compared to the other companies he’s worked with, ranking AEW at the top.
“This AEW job and being here, this is the greatest roster and the most fun that I’ve ever had,” Hardy said. “Behind this would be the TNA run I had when I first started doing Broken Matt. This is the best gig I’ve ever had, I’m so fortunate and lucky to be here right now.”
Hardy talked with the guys about knowing his role at this point in his career and the admiration he has for AEW in recognizing his strengths and weaknesses after 28 years in the business.
“I’m a performer, I don’t try to hide it, I’m 45 years old and I’ve been around almost 28 years doing this so I have to utilize it in a certain way,” Hardy said. “But if you utilize me I can produce really great stuff still. You have to have the trust and faith in me to do that and understand how to utilize Matt Hardy who has 28 years of bumps on his bump card. If you do that, I can help build people.
“I don’t want to be the champion, I don’t want the company to be built around me, I don’t want to be the centerpiece of attention every week, I want to be there and do my thing and stay hot and fresh but help other guys. You’re going to see that in the next couple of weeks with some of the things I’m doing.”
Hardy mentioned how he’s not surprised by the love AEW has received as quickly as they have. He added how he respects and admires Tony Khan’s passion for the business.
“Our personalities are so similar in so many ways because of our love and passion for wrestling,” Hardy said. We really vibe on that and we’ve had a great relationship thus far. He really cares, he’s a detailed guy and he pays attention to everyone. He wants to look until every little thing and make it as good as possible. He’s all about giving everyone the best opportunity to make the most of what they’re doing.”
Hardy admitted that he is looking forward to post-pandemic shows with AEW and getting to experience a live crowd for the first time with the company.
“AEW has great knowledge and great passion and the thing that’s so amazing is in the midst of a pandemic they’re still killing it in empty arena shows. The way they’ve approached it is so smart, i can’t wait to get back to whatever the new normal is and see fans in the stands.”
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Busted Open Podcast with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.