There isn’t a more contentious paring in AEW than Matt Hardy and Private Party. After a strong early showing in AEW that notoriously saw the young team defeat the Young Bucks in the inaugural AEW World Tag Team Championship Tournament, the duo of Marq Quen and Isiah Kassidy rapidly fell out of prominence in Tony Khan’s company, transforming from a legitimate challenger for the tag titles to a team performing on Dark and Dark Elevation more than Dynamite or Rampage.
So what changed? How did Private Party go from one of the hottest teams in the game to a group often overlooked and almost never taken seriously as challengers for the belt, regardless of who was holding the straps at the time? Well, playing no small part in that was the decision made by none other than the elder Hardy Brother, Matt Hardy, to take the team under his wing and attempt to help the duo become the AEW edition of the Hardy Boyz.
Now on paper, that isn’t the worst idea imaginable; like Matt and Jeff, Quen and Kassidy are great athletes with a flair for the dramatic who can get over with fans in a big way as plucky young babyfaces. With the right man in their corner and a booker who wants to push them forward, not bury them in the middle of the pack – see the 2022 iteration of The Acclaimed with Billy Gunn – they could have seen success. But alas, it just wasn’t meant to be; Hardy took his turn as Private Party’s manager and parlayed it into a full-on wrestling incubator Erlich Bachman-style, expanding the outfit out to include The Butcher and The Blade, their manager The Bunny, Jora Johl, and even TH2, Jack Evans and Angelico.
Private Party’s tag team push almost completely fell off, their popularity fell to an all-time low in AEW, and even when they were featured on television, it was almost always as losers, as their 5-15 win-loss record since losing to the Bucks on November 4th, 2021 clearly shows.
So naturally, when Hardy not only began cutting segments on Being The Elite in support of Private Party but actually had a nice in-ring apology with the duo during the Grand Slam Golden Ticket Battle Royal, it left fans cautiously optimistic of the prospects of Quen and Kassidy finally moving past this particular chapter of their careers.
… but then Matt Hardy took to his Extreme Life of Matt Hardy podcast with cohost Jon Alba and threw water on the idea, instead suggesting that three AEW contracted talents may instead form a trio moving forward.
Matt Hardy wants to get back in business with AEW’s Private Party.
After discussing Grand Slam as a whole, Hardy decided to pontificate just a tad on the moment and overall bond he shares with Private Party, and that conversation rapidly spun off into a discussion of what the future holds for us, himself included, as transcribed by Fightful.
“I’m so happy that moment happened,” Hardy declared. “We have been going back and forth, and you could see there was still a bond and connection there. We almost manifested it back to reality. I’m so happy. We did Rampage after Dynamite, it was about 12:22 in the morning. We did the reunion where we shared the hug in the middle of the ring, it got a great reaction from the 15,000 or however many people were still there. I was really proud of that. Myself and Private Party, there is a legitimate bond between all three of us as friends and they do look up to me as a mentor. I look at them as my disciples, my students, and I’m happy to give back to them. We share a bond and connection on a personal level as well. That was important to me to reconcile with Private Party. The fact that the crowd reacted to it, which was amazing because it wasn’t an angle that had been pushed hard on TV. We had done bits and pieces to try and make it work and it got over big and everyone was happy with it. I know the AEW office said it was a great piece of business and they were happy with it. I’m excited to see what the future holds for the three of us.”
Us? Oh no, the fans on Twitter aren’t going to like that one. Fortunately, Hardy preemptively addressed that.
“Even wrestling Twitter was like, ‘Private Party has to get away from Matt Hardy,’ but they were upset whenever we had to separate and they were so happy to be back with me because, it doesn’t necessarily make a difference of what you see on camera and after we go through the curtain. In the big scheme of things, I will always have their best interests in mind,” Hardy added.
“Absolutely, 100%,” Hardy declared. “I would love to do a run with Private Party as a trios team and fight and challenge for the titles, I would love to do that. It’d be so fun. That’d be a cool notch to add to my belt, being a trios champion.”
Welp, there you go; it’s only a matter of time before “The Hardy Party” is in full effect and challenging for championship gold… at least until Jeff is eligible to return – when that happens, the future will be back up in the air for Private Party.