Friday, January 13, 2017

The Broken Brilliance of 2016's Greatest Wrestler

"Wrestling Weekday, I knew you'd come!"

In 2017, TNA could not even make the list of the Top 10 Wrestlers of the year. But as the promotion puts their first star on the list, he comes in as the greatest star of the year.

Image credit: Matt Hardy.
Matt Hardy started 2016 with his second reign as TNA World Heavyweight Champion. But strangely, that might have been the low point of the year for him. His reign came with a heel turn and a new enforcer in Tyrus, but it never quite worked. The reign ended just a few weeks later with Matt's loss to Drew Galloway.

From there, he started a feud with Jeff Hardy and the true brilliance started to come forth. After two straight brutal losses to his brother, it seemed like Matt might be done with wrestling. But just a few weeks later, Jeff's old alter ego Willow appeared in the ring despite Jeff already being present. But after beatings at the hand of three different Willows, Matt revealed himself as the mastermind of the false form. He declared himself broken, a shadow of his former self obsessed only with the deletion of Jeff, a man he would now only refer to as Brother Nero.

He lost two more matches against Brother Nero, but Matt had one more battle in mind with his brother. The war would continue at Matt Hardy's personal compound, in a battle Matt dubbed "The Final Deletion."

And in one night, the wrestling world would change forever.

From there, the Broken Brilliance finally started to shine. Now the sole owner of the Hardy name, he brought the now "obsolete" Brother Nero into his fold. From there, the tag titles became their target, but it seemed clear this was still Matt's show. From appearances on just about every wrestling podcast still in character to promo after promo to premonition after premonition.

Over the course of the year, Matt became the biggest star in TNA by leaps and bounds, and arguably the most talked about wrestler in the world. He made King Maxel, Senor Benjamin, Vanguard 1 and even The Dilapidated Boat famous names in the wrestling world. An epic feud with Decay started the path to Delete and Decay.

He ended the year with Total Nonstop Deletion and the Tag Team Apocalypto. But Hardy's Great War is far from over.

"Delete! Delete! Delete!"

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