Jeff Hardy has quit TNA Wrestling, just one week after missing out on a fourth World Heavyweight Championship title.
The Charismatic Enigma’s final match proved to be a controversial handicap match, when he fought alongside the Icon Sting, against Ethan Carter III, Rockstar Spud and the World Tag Team Champions – the Bro Mans.
Hardy claimed that he would not return until the “shadows had lifted” over TNA, and that his family, not wrestling, was his number one priority at the moment.
Magnus defeated Hardy for the World title in the first ever Dixieland match, a contest Hardy was on the verge of winning until the intervention of the Carter’s and Spud.
In a frantic opening to the last TNA show of 2013, Spud introduced company president Dixie Carter, who claimed to have a big announcement. She was interrupted by Jeff Hardy, who too claimed to have an announcement. Spud refused Hardy permission to speak, and it needed the intervention of Ethan Carter III to prevent Hardy attacking the ‘Rockstar’. Sting arrived and told Dixie that her treatment of Hardy was unacceptable. He challenged EC3 and Spud to a tag match against himself and Hardy, something that Dixie begrudgingly agreed too.
Dixie attempted to continue with her planned announcement, but she was held up again by Gunner, who asked to cash in the World Title shot briefcase he won in Feast or Fired. This time Carter declined the match request, explaining that Magnus was not in attendance, and was still celebrating his title win at home.
Instead, Gunner was forced into a match with former tag team partner James Storm, who challenged the Modern Day Viking for his briefcase.
Storm accused Gunner of tipping off Bobby Roode, ahead of the It Factor attacking the Cowboy in a bar the night before the pair’s World Title tournament quarter final. Gunner, enraged by the accusation, willingly accepted Storm’s challenge. Carter decided to postpone her own announcement, and allowed the duo to kick off the show.
In an evenly fought contest, Storm and Gunner’s in depth knowledge of each other’s strengths and weaknesses was plain to see, as they grappled for several minutes without success. Eventually the duo took their fight outside of the ring, but before the match was able to develop further, they were both disqualified by count-out (for being outside of the ring for more than ten seconds). As a result the match was a draw, allowing Gunner to keep his briefcase and his prize of a World Title shot.
At the end of the evening, Dixie Carter returned to announce that Magnus would be having his coronation as World Champion next week. She also revealed that the Bro Mans would fight alongside EC3 and Spud in their tag match.
Hardy, still nursing an injury from his ladder fall in last week’s match, struggled to reach his normal high standards, while the Bro Mans teamed up against Sting at every opportunity. Both EC3 and Spud avoided the action as much as possible, intimidated by their opponent’s pedigree.
Ironically however, Sting eventually became the victim of Carter, who took advantage of the Icon being distracted by the Bro Mans to roll him up and get the pin. The look of horror on Sting’s face was plain to see. Having pushed and pushed for a match with EC3 for several weeks, criticising him for his poor attitude and overrated abilities, he had lost.
The Bro Mans, Spud and DJ Zema Ion lifted a triumphant and still undefeated Carter on to their shoulders and carried him gleefully from the ring, allowing Hardy to make his announcement – this was his last match in TNA. In a passionate farewell, Hardy told his fans, his ‘creatures’, that he would always love them, but that his heart just wasn’t up for the fight anymore.
Elsewhere, the Joseph Park / Abyss debate rolled on into another week, as Park defeated Bad Influence in a Monster’s Ball match, a style of fighting introduced by Abyss. Park even made use of his brother’s iconic weapon, Janice, ahead of pinning Christopher Daniels.
Lei’d Tapa defeated ODB by pin, but she needed the assistance of Gail Kim, who distracted the referee by sliding her knockouts belt into the ring, and Bully Ray returned to the ring, claiming that he would soon be back, and that he would be worse than ever before.
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