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Reby Hardy On If They Are Willing To Face Anthem In Court

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Via: Sports Illustrated

Sports Illustrated spoke with Reby Hardy regarding the ongoing dispute between the Hardys and Anthem Sports over the “Broken” intellectual property. Below are a couple of highlights:

Anthem claims Matt Hardy asked for an extra $100,000 during his contract negotiations, and if he did not receive the additional money, he would then explore options with WWE. Is this accurate?

“That is not accurate, but it is laughable.

During contract negotiations, when I started to notice as well as hear from friends about Jeff Jarrett’s shady business tactics, I did two things: I immediately filed a trademark for “Broken” Matt Hardy, and started to record every conversation between Matt and anyone at that TNA office, including Ed Nordholm and Jeff Jarrett. For recording phone calls, it is legal with a one-party consent law in North Carolina, which is where we live, and Tennessee, which is where TNA has its office. If Matt wasn’t in North Carolina for those conversations, then he was in another state with a one-party consent. Matt made sure to protect himself, because no one from that company is protecting us.

In the phone call that Ed Nordholm is referencing, it is very clear that Matt did not hold Anthem up for any money. He did not request $100,000 more. Matt tried to make Impact great again, for real, and not just through a hashtag. He did everything he could for that company, and Ed Nordholm’s comment is so petty and unprofessional. Who do Ed Nordholm and Jeff Jarrett think they’re fooling? You could never even imagine Vince McMahon acting this way. Two days before his contract is up, Matt’s receiving drunk texts from Jeff Jarrett. Matt is an established star, and they treated him like he was insignificant.

– Is Anthem correct in its assertion that it owns the “Broken Universe” intellectual property?

There is enough question in the contract, in terms of gimmick development and intellectual property, that our attorneys strongly feel that there is a case.

 If there were no question about it, like Jeff Jarrett and Ed Nordholm continue to say, then I would not be discussing it, and neither would Matt. There is enough of a question in the contract that it is worth fighting over. If it were as cut-and-dry as Anthem is trying to make everyone believe, then we would have stopped pursuing it. That’s not the case. There are legal questions over the verbiage in the contract, and we have a good chance of winning this battle.”

Anthem also denies that it ever asked for a significant percent of Hardy merchandise, including Jeff Hardy’s art work and music, as well as stated that the contracts offered to Matt and Jeff were almost close to equal in terms of pay. Is the company being truthful, and where do we go from here?

“We literally have those documents in email form from Ed Nordholm.

In one of the contracts, Anthem snuck in a percentage the company would be owed from any income from ShopMattHardy.com and JeffHardyBrand.com. The fact that they would feel entitled to that is a joke. Jeff Hardy’s site is literally his paintings and music; it has nothing to do with wrestling and is an artistic venture. Why are they entitled to any of that? To slide that into the contract was a real shady move, and we have the documents to prove it.

Jeff Jarrett’s plan was to give Jeff Hardy all the money, and he actually said to pay Matt as little as possible because he believed Matt could not go anywhere without Jeff Hardy. I had reservations about WWE for a long time, but I forgot all of my reservations and our loyalty to the TNA brand after I learned that.

F— these guys, to put it bluntly. After Matt financed his own shoots and put hours and hours of his own time writing the shows? F— these guys. We didn’t have any scripts. They’re claiming IP, they’re claiming this is their character and development, but we never had one script or one shoot sheet. That was all Matt pouring himself into the character and dedicating himself to it.

The amount of time and effort he put into this made it his brainchild, which is why this is more of a personal matter than business. It was all our creation, and we can easily prove that it was all us, and it’s nothing but ego on their end. Matt refused to re-sign, they really believed that he could not go anywhere else, and we called them out on their bluff. Ed Nordholm actually told Jeff Hardy’s attorney, “Tell them to go to WWE.” Is that the way you negotiate? To try to get someone to sign a s— contract to work at your s— company for s— money? When it comes down to it, this comes down to their ego versus all of the time, effort, and passion we have put into this project and gimmick.

This is a personal investment vs. ego. I feel like there will never be an agreement without going to court.”

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