WWE: The Battle for the Broken Universe Has Only Just Begun


The battle between WWE’s Matt Hardy and Anthem over the Broken Universe is escalating. With both sides arguing ownership, neither seems ready to back down.

The battle for the Broken Universe appears to be far from over. In a recent turn of events, Impact President Ed Nordholm has released documents pertaining to the situation. The whole situation has been tumultuous from the get-go. Matt and Reby Hardy claim they have ownership over the character with Anthem making the same claims. Nordholm is making his stance clear by releasing the contract details.

In the spring of 2016, Broken Matt Hardy made his first appearance on Impact television. In the story, Matt had blamed Jeff for the loss of his TNA Heavyweight Championship, and the feud began. Jeff would get the upper hand on Matt throughout the early stages of the feud. With the losses piling up, Matt would go to new depths to defeat his brother. It was at this time that Matt would begin to refer to Jeff as “Brother Nero.”

After a loss to Jeff in a cage match, Broken Matt would make one final challenge to Brother Nero. In what would become the most talked about event in the wrestling world, the Final Deletion was born. The Final Deletion would be Broken Matt’s vehicle within which he could “delete” his brother and right the wrongs. Matt would defeat Jeff in the Final Deletion and gain sole ownership over the Hardy name. No longer would Jeff be allowed to use the Hardy name, but would be known as “Brother Nero.”

As time would go on, Broken Matt and Brother Nero would find themselves in rivalries with The Decay, The DCC and every other team under the Impact banner. The Broken Hardys would innovate more creative matches such as the Delete or Decay and Total Nonstop Deletion. As time would go on the Hardy’s contracts were set to expire and with Anthem not offering what they felt they deserved, they would leave the company.

The Broken Hardys would begin appearing in promotions all over the world completing what they dubbed their “Expedition of Gold.” Broken Matt and Brother Nero would soon end up in Ring of Honor to face long-time rivals The Young Bucks. It was at Ring of Honor’s 15th Anniversary that the match would come to a head. This would also mark the day where the legal battle began to escalate. On the day of the event, Anthem would send a cease and desist order to ROH in regards to the Hardys using the Broken characters. Many see this as an underhanded move by Anthem/Impact as they waited until hours before the event to handcuff ROH.

The next chapter of the saga would be written over Wrestlemania weekend. The Broken Hardys would compete in a ladder match, losing the tag titles to the Young Bucks. In an exciting turn of events, after weeks of denials, the Hardys would return to the WWE the following night at Wrestlemania. In their first night back with the company, the Hardys would win the RAW tag team titles in another ladder match. Matt would low-key use the Broken mannerisms such as the delete hand gesture as well as his signature laugh.

Both Matt and his wife Reby, have been very open about their current battles with Anthem and Nordholm as far as ownership of the Broken character. In a move by Nordholm, he would do an interview with John Pollock of Live Audio Wrestling. In the interview, he would state that Anthem owned the characters and WWE didn’t want them at all. Reby would quickly refute this claim.

First reported by Ryan Satin of Pro Wrestling Sheet, Nordholm would follow up the interview by releasing portions of Matt’s contract as well as email and text message chains. As a non-involved party, I can’t understand the move by Nordholm as it fully breaks any trust and confidentiality between Anthem and talent.

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For the WWE, of course, they wouldn’t admit that they want the Broken character. It would make no sense for them to show their hand to their opposition as far as creative plans. So I could fully see WWE just telling Impact they wanted nothing to do with it, just to throw them off the trail. This whole battle is going to get far worse before it can get any better. It seems both sides are digging in their heels deep and are preparing for a long fight.