During a recent interview, Matt Hardy stated that Jeff Hardy would have stayed in WWE had the company been willing to give him a reduced schedule.
Vince McMahon, though, is too stubborn to do that.
In terms of accomplishments, Hardy will never be on the same level as Shawn Michaels and Undertaker. Those guys are viewed as more legendary figures than Hardy. Plus, they never left WWE, which means a lot in the eyes of those who aren't capable of being loyal to all of wrestling as opposed to one company.
In terms of being an asset to the company, though, Hardy rivals both Michaels and Undertaker. Very few guys in the history of this business has been as marketable and profitable to a company. WWE generated millions of dollars in merchandise sales, live event sales and PPV buys thanks to Hardy.
For some odd reason, though, McMahon refused to think about that when it came time to negotiate a new deal with Hardy.
Hardy wanted the same type of contract that Michaels and Undertaker had. They essentially worked a fraction of what everyone else was working. Michaels did not have to work any house shows. Undertaker is given extended time off whenever he needs.
The Charismatic Enigma would have stayed under those conditions. He would still be on all television shows and PPVs. Most fans wouldn't even notice that he was not at the house shows. Hardy still would have generated big bucks for McMahon and the fans would have been happy.
Looking back, McMahon seriously missed the boat on this one.