Matt Hardy Describes the Old WWE Locker Room as a Place of Conflict and Hostility

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On a recent edition of his “The Extreme Life of Matt Hardy” podcast, AEW wrestler Matt Hardy discussed the locker room culture in WWE, his comments about The Young Bucks, and more.

You can check out the highlights from the podcast below:

On if he ever found the WWE locker room contentious: “I would even probably use a stronger adjective than contentious. There were some times the culture was malicious. Really bad…Not a lot of people, especially with the mentality people have in this day and age, and [I’m] not saying that in a bad way, just people are much more caring and giving and open, and willing to help everyone out and give everyone chances and opportunities, right?

“But the culture when we first came in, the way they would bring you in and haze you and test you and do things to you to make you earn your place in that dressing room. You had to earn a seat, you had to earn a locker in that dressing room. It was…there were some things that I saw done over the course of my first few years which…people would be arrested for nowadays. It was a different business.”

On things wrestlers would do if there was heat in the locker room: “You would see…somethings where guys had heat, where they would take their suitcase as soon as they went out, they would cut up their clothing. They would put it into the shower. I’ve seen where guys had heat, they would be in the showers and guys would make fun of them and say terrible things, push them to the limits, which would horrify them, just to put them through what they thought was a test.”

On what he said about The Young Bucks: “I mean, I’ve seen a lot of stuff over the years that I’ve been there, which is like ‘Whoa,’ looking back in hindsight. I did a promo with the Bucks on a BTE before we wrestled the Bucks in, I want to say in Vegas. But there was a thing where I said ‘If you guys would’ve come up when we came up, you never would’ve made it.’ And it was a legit statement, cause they’re both nice guys, they’re both sweethearts. But like, a lot of people could not have survived through that. It’s crazy. The culture was just so different.”

In a recent episode of his podcast, “The Extreme Life of Matt Hardy,” AEW wrestler Matt Hardy opened up about the locker room culture in WWE, his thoughts on The Young Bucks, and more. Hardy’s candid remarks shed light on the intense and sometimes malicious environment that existed during his time in WWE.

When asked about whether he found the WWE locker room contentious, Hardy went even further, using a stronger adjective to describe the culture. He revealed that there were times when the culture was not just contentious but malicious. He explained that back then, people were not as caring, giving, and open as they are today. The mentality was different, and individuals had to earn their place in the dressing room.

Hardy shared that when he first entered the business, newcomers were hazed and tested to prove themselves. They had to earn a seat and a locker in the dressing room. He mentioned witnessing things that would be considered illegal today. The actions taken to make newcomers earn their place were extreme and would not be tolerated in the current era of professional wrestling.

Furthermore, Hardy discussed how wrestlers would act if there was heat or tension in the locker room. He recounted instances where individuals with heat would have their clothing cut up and thrown into the shower. He also mentioned how wrestlers would verbally harass and push others to their limits as a form of testing them. These practices were meant to toughen up newcomers and weed out those who couldn’t handle the pressure.

Regarding his comments about The Young Bucks, Hardy clarified that he had seen a lot of things over the years he spent in WWE that made him realize how different the culture was back then. He recalled doing a promo with The Young Bucks on their YouTube series, “Being The Elite,” before their match in Las Vegas. In the promo, Hardy stated that if The Young Bucks had come up during his time, they would not have made it. He explained that it was not a personal attack on The Young Bucks but rather a reflection of the harsh environment that many wrestlers faced during that era.

Matt Hardy’s revelations provide a glimpse into the past and highlight the significant changes in the wrestling industry. The culture in WWE has evolved, and today’s locker rooms are more supportive and inclusive. Wrestlers are now given opportunities and chances to succeed, rather than being subjected to hazing and tests. The experiences shared by Hardy shed light on the progress made in creating a healthier and more positive environment for professional wrestlers.