Matt Hardy talks locker room unrest during TNA's waning days on Destination America.
Matt Hardy has begun chronicling the Broken era of his career on his podcast, The Extreme Life of Matt Hardy. The character, and the antics that ensued, were the talk of the wrestling world even though IMPACT Wrestling had already moved to POP TV. The genesis of the character and Matt Hardy's heel turn stems back to the brand's final days on Destination America.
The brand was on Spike TV from 2005 until 2014, following that they would be placed on Destination America from January 2015 until January 2016. During this time, there was a brief moment where both ROH and IMPACT were broadcast on the same night as part of a professional wrestling block on Destination America.
During the final days of the brand on Destination America, there was unrest backstage as the future of the company was uncertain and on television at this time, they were filming a World Title Series to crown a new champion after the events of Bound for Glory 2015 which saw Matt Hardy win the World Title, even though it was taken off of him very quickly because EC3 filed an injunction forcing him to surrender the championship to keep appearing on TV.
Matt Hardy, on the latest episode of his podcast, recalls filming this world championship series as the company was not even sure if Destination America was going to allow them to stay on their network for the rest of 2015.
“Yeah, they were putting that in the can, if they had [a TV deal]. They weren't sure if Destination America was going to allow them to run the rest of the year, They didn't know if they were gonna be taken off of TV or whatever,” Matt said. “I know the working plan was to film this tournament, so they would have enough content to get them through the year if they were able to put content on television and if not, they would just pick up the store whenever we got a new network. Fortunately, Destination America did let us run that. So once they did run that, the story was definitely in the works that it was going to come down to me and EC3, because we'd been the main storyline in TNA for the last little while, so we're still going to go with that.”
Matt Hardy also reveals that at this time, he was sitting in on creative meetings and had a hand in all storylines if he was trying to help out as much as he could. Hardy, reflecting on the unrest in the locker room due to the uncertainty of the future of the promotion, has been he tried his best to tell those in power to be honest with everyone in the company to at least try and quell the unrest.
“There was a lot of frustration with people at that point. I remember that and just actively, I remember telling management to just try and be honest with people and let people know what's going on,” Hardy recalled. “I had a pretty good say and everything that was going on from a creative aspect, even in the way the company was going. I was sitting in on some of the booking meetings at the time to try and help out and do as much as I could. I was just like, ‘You guys have to be as honest as you possibly can be with the talent,’ and I feel like they tried to be, you know? I know guys were frustrated because they weren't getting paid on time, checks were late, and people were just so unsure of what the future held.”
Speaking about his enjoyment of being involved in a creative capacity at that time, Matt Hardy says he sees himself transitioning into a creative world down the line when he can no longer physically wrestle.
“Definitely. I enjoyed doing that. It's a fun aspect and I feel like, even when you get older and you can't physically wrestle anymore, it still allows you to be involved in the process and it's — you still get something out of it. It's like you're involved to a degree,” Matt Hardy said.
Following the days of the brand on POP, they would eventually transition to being simulcast on both Twitch and The Pursuit Network. Following that, Anthem Sports, the owners of IMPACT, would buy AXS Television, and now, IMPACT can be seen every Thursday night on AXS TV.
As for Matt Hardy, he is currently in AEW and part of the AHFO, this Sunday night, at AEW Revolution 2022, he will take part in a Tornado Trios match as he teams with Andrade and Isiah Kassidy, against staying, Darby Allin, and Sammy Guevara. You can see the full card here.
We will have full coverage of AEW Revolution 2022, beginning Sunday night, March 6 at 7 p.m. eastern time.
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