There are certain names in the wrestling business that have made it a very disturbing habit of screwing things up to the point that they really aren’t trusted with much of a push anymore.
Internet fans that I’ve talked to often refer to this is “Billy Gunn-ing” things up. What that means is over my head, to be honest with you. Maybe some of you can enlighten me on that.
But one name that is synonymous with screwing opportunity after opportunity up is Scott Hall. Here’s a man who has come very close on several occasions to becoming a main event champion in WCW, but was never given a legitimate title run because not only of Hollywood Hogan, but also his well-documented drug and alcohol issues.
No matter how badly he kept screwing up, though, WCW kept bringing him back.
Fast forward to 2001, when Vince McMahon bought WCW out; Scott Hall was nowhere to be found.
It was almost as if half the internet was expecting to read a news story at some point in time that said “Scott Hall found dead in hotel room”. That story never came.
Vince McMahon then announces he’s bringing the nWo into WWE. The original three of Hollywood Hogan, Kevin Nash, and Scott Hall were then spotted at the February 2002 No Way Out PPV.
Much to the surprise of many, even after his walking out of WWE with Kevin Nash, Scott Hall was given another chance, which is further evidence that Vince McMahon is a very forgiving individual. You can say just about anything you want about Vince McMahon, and I certainly have in the past, but one thing you cannot say is he never forgives, because he does.
However, management was not exactly ready to fully trust Hall yet. If you recall, Hall was scheduled to face Stone Cold Steve Austin at Wrestlemania X-8, but yet nothing was scheduled for Kevin Nash. If you recall, the reason for that was Nash was slotted to take Hall’s spot in the event that Hall couldn’t make it to Wrestlemania. Of course, as history shows,
Austin defeated Hall at WM X-8.
Unfortunately, shortly after Wrestlemania X-8, Hall was indeed fired from WWE. And once again, Hall was just floating out in the great abyss, with nobody knowing exactly what’s happening or even if he’s still alive.
Then, when TNA first fired up, he had a brief stint there. Then, it was back to not knowing whether Hall was alive or dead. Then, just recently, he had yet another brief stint in TNA before no-showing a recent PPV, in which he was scheduled to team up with his longtime friend Kevin Nash and Samoa Joe. That was the PPV in which Joe gave the now-infamous “Fire me if you don’t like what I’m saying; I don’t care” shoot.
Scott Hall then decided to take a trip to
Puerto Rico to work for the famous Carlos Colon and the World Wrestling Council. However, it didn’t take very long for Hall to get on the wrong side of
Colon and WWC, because he no-showed an event there as well. Scott Hall hasn’t been seen or heard from since that day.
I’m assuming the man is still alive, but the way former wrestlers have been dropping lately, I’m legitimately concerned for the man’s well-being.
There’s another name to add to the list of people who constantly screw up time and time again, and sad as it is to say, it’s a name that’s been here before.
Recently, Jeff Hardy dropped the Intercontinental Championship to Chris Jericho on RAW. Now, many (myself included) just assumed that Hardy dropped the belt because he was scheduled to win the Money in the Bank Ladder Match at Wrestlemania 24. And, for the most part, at least two weeks ago, maybe he was.
However, it is now well-known throughout the internet community that Jeff Hardy has been suspended for sixty days for a violation of the WWE Talent Wellness Program.
Jeff has apparently committed his second said violation of the policy, which would explain the sixty-day suspension as opposed to the thirty-day suspension. However, one more violation and it could mean the end of not only Jeff Hardy’s second run in WWE, but his wrestling career in general.
If you recall, Jeff Hardy’s first run in WWE ended back in 2002 when he was no-showing events. He then complained that he was “burnt-out” and that he needed time away from the ring. That’s when we got word of his venture into the music industry and his band Peroxwhygen.
However, his love for wrestling came back to him, and he suddenly showed up in TNA, where he was immediately put into a main event program with then-NWA World Heavyweight Champion Jeff Jarrett. Jeff had appeared to change his ways, and for the most part, he had.
However, it wasn’t too long before he got on the wrong side of TNA management and was subsequently fired from the company. He would then show up on RAW in 2006, and the rest is history.
Now, there is a slight chance he could go back to TNA. We’ve seen how forgiving Dixie Carter and Jeff Jarrett are in terms of how talent would wrong them and they still came back some time down the road. See example: Vince Russo.
But, memo to Jeff Hardy: just between you and me, if I were in your shoes, I would just take my chances with WWE instead of hoping to get another opportunity in TNA.
Now, to be fair, Jeff Hardy has been feeling substantial pain for a long time, and perhaps non-prescribed pain pills are now his drug of choice. However, the historical facts are that more former wrestlers have died from overdosing on pain pills than smoking bud. Both could get you a violation of the Wellness Program, but only one has been known to be a lethal choice.
Kurt Angle himself at one point in time was said to be scared for his life because he was so addicted at the time to Vicodin, a heavy-duty pain pill.
So, on one hand, I would say that I understand to a certain degree what Jeff Hardy’s going through, and I hope he gets the time to heal his wounds and gets back in the ring sometime soon without the need to take pain pills. Again, I’m not a wrestler, nor do I play one on TV, but I can understand why some would feel the need for a little help getting through the pain time after time.
On the other hand, however, I have to ask the question…
Jeff, you had everything going your way! Hell, I went as far as to put you on my Future World Champions list, a list that has now once again been trimmed down to three: Samoa Joe, Mr. Kennedy, and Shelton Benjamin. You went from being in the same category that CM Punk was once in to being in the same category that Charlie Haas and Carlito are now in. I’m currently conflicted because I don’t know whether to feel your pain or be pissed at you! Maybe both!
I do know this, though: it is the “bubble” time of year in sports, and out of those that are currently on the bubble of my Future World Champions list (MVP, Matt Hardy, Elijah Burke, Robert Roode, and Matt Sydal) the one that is closest to making the FWC list is MVP.
He has really come a long way in terms of his development. Ever since his program last year with the late Chris Benoit and even his program with Matt Hardy, which should resume shortly after Wrestlemania 24, MVP has gone supernova because he’s blown up!
I’m not entirely convinced yet, though, that he’ll be a main event champion one day. You can see as to where I’m being cautious now, after what happened to Jeff Hardy and all.
I will say this much though: nothing against Jeff, but at least I know that if management ever does decide to give his brother Matt Hardy a major push, Matt’s not going to throw away that opportunity. That much I do know. And Matt’s especially not going to get caught in the same position again since his girlfriend isn’t on the road and interacting with Edge every single day. He has that going for him, which is really nice.
Jeff, seriously, I hope you get the help you need to overcome whatever it is you’re battling. In the meantime, I will pray for you and hope to see you back in the ring in about two months. Fight on.
To the many that have fallen before this day, God Bless you all, and may you be in a much better place today than you were here. Your memories will live on, though you are gone.