There is a reason why WWE was advertising Matt Hardy vs. Randy Orton in a Street Fight for Monday Night Raw.
Fightful reports that the original plan was for the match to take place as advertised and it was supposed to run for multiple segments. However, Vince McMahon made the call to scrap the match and just have Orton attack Hardy again.
The result would have likely seen Orton defeat Hardy. There is no word on why McMahon made the change but I was told that there were some people in the company who felt that a Hardy vs. Orton match would make the attack from the previous week seem meaningless since it was similar to how Edge was attacked and he has not appeared on TV in weeks. As previously noted, the attack from the previous week was supposed to be Hardy’s swan song with the company but plans changed when McMahon saw the quarter hour ratings. At that point is when the decision was made to bring Hardy back to TV this week.
McMahon is adamant that this week’s attack from Orton is Hardy’s last TV appearance with the company unless he decides to sign a new contract. At this point, it doesn’t look like he will sign a new deal and he will be a free agent on March 1st.
Hardy sent a tweet to sell the latest attack by Orton and many fans picked up on how “Against Every Warning” spells out AEW. Hardy is heavily rumored to be the exalted one in the Dark Order stable.