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Ballin' out of control
CINCINNATI -- Matt Hardy has spent the summer of 2007 embroiled in a bitter rivalry with Montel Vontavious Porter over the United States Championship around MVP's waist. But since being forced to team together two weeks ago — a surprise move that resulted in them winning the WWE Tag Team Championship — their rivalry has taken several strange twists of fate, as our fans played witness to last Friday on SmackDown.
The U.S. Champion invited his adversary and fellow co-champion into his illustrious VIP Lounge for a one-on-one conversation concerning their new titles. While MVP tried to explain that his focus has shifted toward remaining a tag champion, Matt Hardy made it clear that he is not finished in his sole pursuit of more gold, telling the Ballin' Superstar, "I'm honored to be one-half of the tag champs, but I want another opportunity for the U.S. Title at Unforgiven."
MVP wasn't hearing it though. Insisting he is a team player and that his first priority will be defending the tag titles, the man with "three-halves" then informed Hardy that he had set up a match for them to defend the WWE Tag Team Titles against Deuce & Domino, live on pay-per-view at Unforgiven. The self-proclaimed "captain of the team" then delivered another surprise, revealing that Hardy was about to have an impromptu match against Deuce. The North Carolinian Superstar, not one to back down from any challenge, readied himself to compete even though he was still in his street clothes.
Deuce was hoping to make a statement in the match, staying on the offensive for much of the contest. Then, unknown to Hardy, MVP interfered in the match, freeing Matt to deliver a Twist of Fate to the Superstar from the Other Side of the Tracks, and thereby pick up the victory. The cocky MVP then celebrated Hardy's win by raising his partner's hand in the air, signifying their apparent unity under tag gold. But can MVP, the "half-man, half-amazing, half-WWE Tag Team Champion," be trusted?
Montel Vontavious Porter's actions are not those that Hardy is accustomed to. Now in his eighth reign as a tag team champion, Matt is used to his brother —current Intercontinental Champion and Raw Superstar Jeff Hardy — having his back. With MVP in his corner, Matt will undoubtedly have to deal not only with the arrogance of a man whom he has battled numerous times for the prized United States Championship, but also with the fact that MVP still doesn't see Hardy as his equal. For that matter, SmackDown's Franchise Playa doesn't see anyone as equal to him, but if he wants to keep the bling around his waist, he might just have to change his perception or risk losing more than just the tag titles.
As for Hardy, while he is honored to be one-half of the tag champions, his eyes are still fixed on singles gold. Can he put his U.S. Title aspirations aside while he is teamed with Porter, or will MVP's persistent showboating and boasting that he is "better than Matt Hardy" become too much for one of WWE's greatest tag wrestlers to ignore? Either way, next Sunday at Unforgiven, Matt & MVP have to act as a cohesive unit, or they might find themselves victims to a Crack 'em in da Mouth.