During the latest episode of The Extreme Life of Matt Hardy, the AEW star discussed the divide between WWE and AEW fans and why he is not a fan of such attitudes.
“One thing I would like to say is the tribalism between WWE and AEW fans, like, you don’t have to do this,” Hardy said. “I don’t know if you enjoy it, the people that do it online on social media, it just creates such a toxic environment in the big scheme of things. You love WWE, go hard for WWE, and support WWE. I love WWE and you know I’ve said that since day one, and I’ll never say anything differently. Obviously, when I work somewhere else, I’m going to go hard for AEW because they’re the people paying my bills at the end of the day, but just like a pro wrestling match, you take shots at your opponent, and you talk sh** about them.
“That’s what AEW is going to do to WWE, that’s what WWE, in theory, is going to do to AEW although they don’t mention AEW in the big scheme of things, they may take shots in other ways behind the scenes. That’s part of the game, part of the business, and don’t take that too seriously. If you have a guy in WWE taking shots at an AEW guy, don’t sweat it. If you have an AEW guy taking shots at a WWE guy, don’t sweat it, it’s all part of the game, baby. It’s all a part of the game and the whole promotion, and the whole fun of pro wrestling. As a fan, don’t work yourself into a shoot, especially with other fans online. Enjoy whatever you enjoy and be proud of it, and don’t let anybody take it differently.”
“Quote me: I think Randy Orton is f***ing awesome,” Hardy said. “I love Randy’s work, I always enjoyed working with him and I think as a person, me knowing him for these 20 years, we have so much in common. The last couple of years I was [in WWE], we became closer than we ever had just because we shared those personal family lives together and we were kind of in the same boat. Both of our wives are pretty intense if you know what I mean, they’re good for us because they keep us both in check. I have nothing but positive things to say about Randy. I love his storytelling in the ring and I love the way he tells his character.
“Randy was one of my biggest supporters when I left and went to AEW, to get over and my stuff on my own, being one of the older guys that were never one of Vince’s top guys. Randy was one of my biggest supporters and constantly would text me and we’d stay in contact. I think Randy is awesome, people who think Randy doesn’t do a lot of work at a slower more plotting pace, I just don’t think they get the basic aspects of traditional pro wrestling. When it comes to traditional pro wrestling and traditional storytelling, there is no one better than Randy Orton. He’s so smooth, he’s so good, and he’s so committed to whatever personality he’s working. He’s just a joy to work with.”
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