The conversation around Jeff Hardy’s victory over Karrion Kross on Raw last night (July 19) has gone in a lot of different directions.
What does it say about what the company thinks of their current NXT champion? Is it an indication of what Vince McMahon thinks about NXT in general? Why didn’t they have Scarlett with Kross? How cool is it that Hardy finally got his old entrance music back?
It’s the last one that has me thinking about something other than WWE’s developmental program and third brand. Folks have been obsessed with the idea of Jeff getting “No More Words” back. It’s what he entered to during the best days of his singles runs in the Aughts, when he won WWE World titles before his addictions led to legal trouble.
Hardy was trending on Twitter for much of Sunday night and Monday morning, despite the fact he wasn’t on the Money in the Bank card. It was just fans reminiscing about how much they love the Charismatic Enigma. Most of those memories were from the “No More Words” era. He’s always had a powerful connection to WWE’s audience, and this would be a smart time for the company to take advantage of that.
With their return to the road, we’re seeing McMahon again turn back to the stars of yesteryear to drive interest and sell tickets. Jeff’s not going to move the needle quite as much as John Cena or Goldberg, but he could probably generate as much enthusiasm as his old tag team foe Edge. The response online, and in Dallas’ American Airlines Center last night, is evidence of that.
His appearance on Raw wasn’t a return per se. Hardy’s been on the roster since he and brother Matt re-signed back in 2017. But Jeff’s been relegated to an enhancement role, and stashed on the international/streaming show Main Event, for a while now. He’d be a fresh face should WWE decide to use him higher up the card, and he’s primed for a comeback story. The announce team was certainly pushing him as “rejuvenated” last night, even before his win over Kross.
Reliability may be a concern, given the wear-and-tear on his body from wrestling and those addictions I mentioned. It hasn’t exactly been life on the road for anyone in the company lately, but during the pandemic Jeff’s stayed healthy and out of trouble.
With a lot of tickets to sell over the coming weeks and months, and with Cena and Goldberg (and maybe Edge) only temporary solutions... why not push former WWE World champ and fan favorite Jeff Hardy for at least one more run?
Could it have started against someone other than Kross? Absolutely. Should it have? Probably.
But what’s done is done. Can’t you see the writing on the wall?