According to multiple sources within TNA Wrestling, there was no indication that Jeff Hardy was in no condition to perform throughout the day of TNA’s Victory Road 2011 pay-per-view event.
“He was fine all day and then no one could find him,” according to a company source.
Shortly before Hardy’s match with Sting, production managers James Tilquist (a/k/a Big Tilly) and Bruno Sassi found him in or around his trailer. One source told us he was found on his back in a bathroom.
“They had to carry him from his trailer to the gorilla position,” stated an observer, whose story was deemed true by other employees.
Concern increased over the way Hardy stumbled during his ring entrance. TNA sources believe Eric Bischoff, who was at the “gorilla position,” called the audible with only a matter of seconds to come up with another way of getting around the match. He headed to the ring to deliver the altered match plans to Hardy and Sting while also announcing to the audience that it would be a No Disqualification Match. Many people praised Bischoff as he did the right thing by not allowing Hardy to work a full match. He also had to make a quick decision on what to do.
Following the brief main event match, Sting responded to “bullshit” chants by reportedly saying “I agree.” He headed backstage and there were no visible issues with management. Meanwhile, Hardy remained in the ring and played up the “bullshit” chants. He was led back to his trailer after arriving backstage. There was also no visible confrontation between Hardy and management after the show.
The decision to not use Hardy for the week’s iMPACT! tapings was made the following day during the morning. It was speculated backstage that Hardy would not be used again until his legal situation is finalized. Additionally, management has yet to address the situation with the wrestlers.
TNA Wrestling President Dixie Carter was backstage at the Monday iMPACT! taping, but was not backstage at Tuesday or Wednesday’s shows. She reportedly went on a vacation to Mexico. The feeling amongst some employees was that talk of Hardy was taboo with her on Monday. Some employees were frustrated that she did not address the situation to the locker room.
A number of people within the company strongly feel that Hardy should be fired or at the very least give him the ultimatum that World Wrestling Entertainment officials gave him in 2003 (Hardy declined the request and was fired as a result). Many assume that WWE would cover the cost of Hardy’s rehabilitation if he opts for it. WWE has an ongoing offer to cover the expenses of drug and alcohol rehabilitation programs for current and former talent. However, it has not been indicated that TNA made the request as talks between both parties have been kept quiet.
Have a great weekend guys and check back in often!