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Now is the perfect time for Broken Matt Hardy




The Hardy Boyz hadn’t even hit the ramp at WrestleMania 33 before the “DELETE” chants started. It’d been rumored for weeks that they’d possibly be making their highly anticipated return at the biggest show of the year, but nothing had been set in stone.

Yet when the New Day — who were hosting ‘Mania — appeared just before a three-way tag team ladder match with an announcement, the crowd went bonkers.

The first thing Michael Cole barked into his microphone was “things are about to be broken!” and two of the most decorated tag team performers in WWE history made their way to the ring. More “DELETE” chants rained down as the fatal four-way match unfolded, and it seemed clear that the Broken gimmick that the Hardy Boyz had made famous in TNA would translate cleanly to a larger audience.

In a perfect wrestling World, we would have had Broken Matt Hardy months ago. That isn’t how things have unfolded, and more than half a year of legal posturing by Anthem has taken a bit of the sizzle off of the proverbial Broken steak.

Not all of it, though. recently reported that the “Broken Matt Hardy” trademark will be “published for opposition on December 19 (h/t Other parties will have 30 days to oppose the trademark. If no one steps up — namely Anthem — then Matt will be free to use the Broken character both inside the WWE and independently.

With that date quickly approaching, creative seems to finally be watering the seeds that are the Broken gimmick inside a WWE ring. While we’ve seen (very) light teases in the past, the most recent edition of Raw featured the strongest outright indicators that Matt Hardy’s character will be taken in the “Broken” direction.

Not only did the veteran performer seem to lose his mind before starting to yell “DELETE!” at the top of his lungs following a loss to Bray Wyatt, but Matt — and the WWE — continued to play off of the apparent turn.

Whether he’s going to be Woken or Broken, it seems that Matt Hardy will finally be able to lean on the wonderfully creative stuff he came up with while in TNA — at least to some degree. We’ll probably see the gimmick WWE-ified to some degree, but this is still something wrestling fans have been waiting for since WrestleMania 33.

And if done correctly, Matt could rapidly become one of the most interesting characters on Monday Night Raw.

He has continued to play up this character on social media over the last few days, and this one, in particular, stands out as a real indicator of what kind of direction creative is taking with the Woken angle.

If it sounds over-the-top and silly, welcome to the Broken Universe. Matt willed this over with his outright, almost Undertaker-like commitment to the gimmick in TNA, and it’ll take that same kind of dedication to make it work on WWE.

Moreover, the combination of Wyatt and Hardy could be a breath of fresh air for both competitors. It’s unclear at this juncture how deep the bond between these two men will go, story-wise, but Bray has already played an important role in “awakening” Matt. If they end up in a tandem, it could quickly become one of the most over acts in the WWE today.

Wyatt is constantly popular because of his work on the mic. Creative has booked him into the ground on numerous occasions, and he still bounces back just as strong as ever. That’s because when he speaks, he speaks to something that resides in mostly every viewer.

Wyatt speaks to our primal natures and makes us under whether or not we’re giving energy to the right things. Sometimes his ramblings come off as nonsensical, but when he’s dialed in, Bray can deliver goosebump-inducing monologues.

Hardy isn’t quite as good on the mic, but his character could pull at the same heartstrings. Don’t expect the WWE to get too political these days, but overall, the World has felt like a tense place over the last year. Every day we’re exposed to blood on the streets and a war for equality.

In the most simple of terms, it’s light against dark. Freedom versus oppression. That’s what Hardy can — and should — tap into in the coming weeks. If he can find a way to speak to the parts of us that wonder if society can withstand this kind of frontal assault, then WWE will have struck gold.

Franklin Steele is the assistant editor and featured writer of FanRag Sports' NHL side. He also covers the WWE for Steele, who joined FanRag Sports in October 2013, has been watching and playing hockey since the age of 6. His work has also appeared on, and Bleacher Report. All told, he has more than 3,000 bylines to his name and more than six million people have read his work since 2011. Feel free to follow him on Twitter @FranklinSteele (NHL) and @SteeleTheHeel (WWE).

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