When Jeff Hardy returned to an AEW ring for the first time since June of 2022, it turned heads around the professional wrestling world, from WWE, to Impact, and beyond. Finally, after throwing his life and another Hardy Brothers run off track with a mid-2022 DUI charge, the master of the “Swanton Bomb” was back in a professional wrestling ring, and even if he didn’t technically wrestle a match, he looked to be in a good way, which is a far cry from the last time fans saw him publically in a Florida mugshot.
One of those fans who was excited to see Hardy back in the ring was none other than Booker T, the two-time WWE Hall of Famer who actually shared the ring with Jeff 18 times over his career, according to Cagematch, including two occasions where the Hardy Boyz took the straps off of Booker and Test in 2001. Discussing his return on his The Hall of Fame podcast, Booker was over the moon to see Hardy back in the ring, especially as part of a team with his brother, Matt.
“Jeff Hardy made his return. Big splash, Jeff Hardy being on hiatus for a while, handling his business more so than anything,” Booker said via Fightful. “I’m glad to see Jeff Hardy back. Jeff’s a good dude. I remember everybody wanted to crap on Jeff Hardy when he was going through his rough time there for a second, and I said, man, come on, guys. This is the same guy that has bled, put his body on the line each and every night for those fans. I said don’t do him like that. So for me, I’m just glad to see Jeff Hardy back and doing well.”
“I’m just glad to see Jeff back, for the Hardys to be reunited together as a tag team. Those guys should always be together. They are brothers to the bone, and their careers have been made on each other’s backs, all that time on the road, all those years, Team Extreme, those ladder matches with the Dudleys and so many more. I’m just glad to see those guys back, reunited and still doing what they do best.”
When asked how he would like to see Hardy booked moving forward, if, as his co-host Brad Gilmore suggested, Jeff should work against MJF in the main event of All In II, Booker declared that, in his humble opinion, the Hardys needs to be a team moving forward, and even suggested a match he would like to see at the Wembley Stadium show.
“I’m not opposed to that or anything like that, but I see Jeff Hardy in a tag team with his brother,” Booker noted. “That’s the perfect scenario, I don’t know, against the Young Bucks. I wouldn’t want to take those guys and break them up or anything like that. Those two as a tag team against the Young Bucks, that’s a marquee, that’s a dream match. We definitely could get something out of that.”
Would it be cool to see Hardy-Bucks once more? Most definitely; the duo have wrestled nine times thus far from Ring of Honor to NEW, HOH, Wrestling Superstar, and now in AEW, and adding a 10th match to that resume would be great. Will that happen at All In II? Maybe, maybe not; it depends if FTR get their wish and The Elite go toe-to-toe with Punk The Revolution.
Matt Hardy believes Jeff Hardy seems different now.
Discussing the return of his brother Jeff on Dynamite, Matt Hardy explained why he believes his brother is in a completely different place than he was before, and that he’s ready to make skeptics into believers moving forward.
“This is the most work I’ve ever seen him do on himself. And he had 10 months,” Matt Hardy said via F4W. “He seems different. He seems different. And once again, I don’t want to sit here and vouch for him. I don’t want you to take my word for it. I don’t want you to take anyone else’s word for it. I want you to watch him and follow his actions. He’ll make you a believer, if that’s what you need. I am confident his actions, his conduct, and his behavior will make people a believer.
“He’s made me a believer. I’ve got to see a lot of him and I’ve got to follow his journey and I know the work he has put in and I know how dedicated he has been to legitimately changing and trying to get his sh*t together once and for all. And all I can say is like I’m just so extraordinarily proud of him. He’s done great.
“And [on Wednesday] everybody was so happy to see him. And he was like happy to be there. It was so adorable, right before we went out, he was so nervous and he was so worried because he hadn’t been in a ring at all. He actually came to my house on Monday night and got in my ring, ran the ropes a little bit, took a few bumps… It was a fun time, just catching up with him was.”
Has Jeff Hardy turned over a new leaf in AEW? Will he and his brother finally get that one last prolific tag team run before they can’t do it anymore and add the AEW World Tag Team Championship to their already incredible resume? Only time will tell, but after watching his brother over the past 10 months, it’s clear Matt likes what he sees.
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