Last night at AEW All Out, a truly scary injury occurred to Matt Hardy… and a truly scary decision was made by All Elite Wrestling.
Early on in the Broken Rules Match, Matt Hardy and Sammy Guevara were brawling on a scissor lift. The spot that was supposed to happen was the lift would go up, Hardy would attempt a Side Effect, Guevara would counter and spear Hardy off the lift through some tables about 12 feet below. A dangerous stunt to be sure.
Boy, was it ever.
Hardy took the bump off the lift, but overshot the table with only his mid-to-lower back hitting the table and the back of his head smacking full force with the concrete below.
Matt Hardy was completely unconscious. Time stood still.
I’ve been watching Matt Hardy perform since the 1990s. It’s so weird how you watch someone long enough and you feel you have a connection to them as some sort of distant relative. I was scared.
So was referee Aubrey Edwards. I feel so bad for her. She didn’t know what to do. AEW doesn’t appear to have properly trained their referees on what to do when a legitimate injury happens. If she was looking for direction, she wasn’t getting it through her earpiece. She started to count, Hardy rolled over, tried to get to his feet – no equilibrium, boom, falls down.
They send Dr. Sampson over to check on him. The bell rings signalling the match is called off. Guevara walks off. Minutes later, Sampson gives the ok for him to continue the match. Hardy with his eyes glazed over from an obvious concussion fumbles into Daily’s Place, climbs a rickety, slippery scaffold, throws some weak punches, and wins the match after Guevara falls through a crash pad.
What a complete, unmitigated disaster.
What the hell is going on in All Elite Wrestling? What kind of thorough examination did Dr. Sampson give Matt Hardy that made him feel ok to allow him to continue? Where is the leadership.
Sorry, but the buck stops with AEW President Tony Khan. Khan has been criticized for being a mark with a lot of money owning a wrestling company. Tonight, he proved himself to be just that because the one thing he isn’t is a leader. Somebody needed to put their big boy pants on and says, “NO.” So what this match doesn’t get a finish? Call it a no contest, let Matt Hardy heal up, and have this main event a Dynamite or do it at Full Gear. You don’t let the concussed wrestler continue wrestling.
Shame on you, Tony Khan. Matt Hardy is 45-years old. His legacy is rock solid in wrestling. He’s a husband, a father… he’s not a piece of meat that needs to work to the end of a match so you get your finish. This isn’t the 1990s anymore. You get injured, the match ends. Simple. Period.
Then again, this is a company that stupidly tried to justify bringing back chair shots to the head last year.
I know I’m going to get a whole bunch of messages about WWE and the tragedy with Owen Hart and how they’ve treated their wrestlers through the years. There are no perfect companies. Since Chris Benoit, they’ve been better. They’ve embraced the research done on CTE. They cut chair shots to the head. If you’re suspected of having a concussion, you’re out. It doesn’t matter how big the match is.
AEW needs to get their act together and quick. Tonight was an embarrassment.
What are your thoughts?