WWE LIVE returns to the Macon Coliseum with all your favorite Superstars on Saturday, September 14th! Becky Lynch, Seth Rollins, AJ Styles, and more will be in action– and nobody’s more excited than The Miz! The A-Lister took some time to talk about his reality show, his dream opponent, and the G.O.A.T…
RS- You’ve been going through a renaissance of sorts this year. Most of your career, you’ve haven’t had the WWE Universe on your side– but now they’re starting to come around and join ‘Team MIZ’. What’s that been like for you?
TM- It’s funny, man, I haven’t been cheered for since I was in McDonough, Georgia at Deep South Wrestling, when I first got a contract with WWE in the developmental territory, and we used to do shows there all the time– and I was a good guy! That was 2005. So, from about mid-2005, all the way ’til last year, maybe? I was a bad guy. A ruthless bad guy that was just so good at what he did and then Miz and Mrs. came about, and people got to see “not” The Miz. They got to see Mike Mizanin and once they saw Mike Mizanin, they kind of started seeing me as relatable and likable and now they cheer me! And I don’t know how to react to it! I’m getting used to it. When you’ve been doing something for 13 years and you’re really good at it and then all of a sudden, you have to change it all up, it takes time to get used to it. But listen, if the audience is going to cheer me, I’m going to back them up. You know, I enjoy the audience reaction and when I hear them chanting my name, something comes over me and I get goosebumps and it just feels good.
You had a pretty heated feud at the beginning of the year with Shane McMahon that involved your Dad. How did that come about?
It kind of just happened. We were in Cleveland and my Dad was there, and it was like, kind of a no brainer.
You’ve wrestled most of the people working in the business today, including many Legends and Hall of Famers. Is there anybody that you haven’t or never got to wrestle that you would’ve liked to?
Man, my dream was always to wrestle Ultimate Warrior and it just sucks that he passed away… But, man, when I was a kid growing up, I would put streamers on my arms, paint my face and run around like the Ultimate Warrior. So that would be my one dream. But I’ve been able to wrestle a lot of my heroes. I’ve gotten to act and wrestle with Shawn Michaels. I’ve gotten to wrestle Marty Jannetty. I’ve gotten to wrestle The Rock. I’ve wrestled Bret “The Hitman” Hart. I mean, how many people can say that– in this generation– they have had a match and actually lost the United States Championship in Toronto, of all places, to Bret “The Hitman” Hart? So, I mean, it’s pretty incredible.
One of your signature moves is the Figure-Four [leglock] and I’d heard that before you started using it, you actually went to Ric Flair and told him about it and asked if it would be okay– and he gave you his blessing. What was that like?
Back in the day, nobody did anyone else’s moves. No one could do a superkick because Shawn Michaels did the superkick. Now superkicks are almost like the new hip toss, the new arm drag… But back then it was very sacred to do someone else’s moves. I did a Miz TV with Ric Flair and during that, I felt it was a passing of the torch of the Figure-Four to me. And it was amazing. It was wonderful. It was one of the most incredibly giving things that someone can do. And I’ve always been a huge fan of Ric Flair. I mean, he is the G.O.A.T. He is the person that everyone looks to and goes, “WOW, if I could cut a promo like that… If I could look like that… If I could do the things that he could do…” You know THAT was the guy. So, for him to actually give the Figure-Four to me it was just an honor.
I know you’ve been working a lot with Dolph Ziggler lately and, as we’ve seen on your show Miz and Mrs., you and Dolph are actually really close friends. What’s it like working a program with somebody that is a friend of yours? Does it make it easier or more fun?
It makes it A LOT more fun because you can take more liberties. You can kind of hit them where you know their weaknesses are– and you don’t feel bad about it! You know what I mean? It’s one of those things… You just go for the throat! And I think doing stuff with your friends, you’re more giving, and you’re basically trying to one-up one another, if you will, and you get competitive with your friend.
Your life has been pretty much in front of cameras since The Real World, then to the WWE and now Miz and Mrs. and I just wonder what do you guys do when the cameras aren’t around?
RELAX! Play with my daughter Monroe. When the cameras aren’t around, that’s kind of like a more relaxing time. That’s our time to really just sit back, reflect, and just enjoy one another’s company. Too many times, I travel so much that when I’m home, I like to be HOME with my wife and my daughter and literally just hang out with them. And I know it sounds kind of boring and all but that’s my most fun that I have.
Is [mother-in-law] Marjo included in that?
Oh, yeah, Marjo is always around.
You mentioned your daughter Monroe. I know she’s about one and a half now, and you and [wife] Maryse have another daughter on the way. What’s something about fatherhood, that you didn’t expect?
How time-consuming it is! Every free moment that you have, you will spend with your daughter not because you have to, but it’s because you WANT to. You want to be there with her. You want to teach her things. You want to see her stand for the first time. You want to see her walk for the first time. You want to be there for those moments and that’s kind of what I didn’t anticipate, how much time it takes. And you always think, “Oh, of course, it’s going to take time” but you don’t realize it until you become a father.
I saw a great picture of Monroe in the ring surrounded by the majority of the women in the WWE and it made me think, “What will you guys say to them if one of the girls comes to you one day and says she wants to get into the business?”
Then I will support her. I’ve always been a dreamer, you know? I’ve always been a person that whatever my mind says that it wants to do, I go after it. And if her mind says, “I want to be a WWE Superstar,” I’m going to give her all the tools that she needs to succeed in WWE. If my daughter is as successful as her mother, Maryse, then that’s amazing. If she’s as successful as all the women out there today, the Becky Lynches, the Charlottes, all the way from way back when… These women are strong, they’re beautiful, they’re smart, they’re independent, and they do their job well. And if my daughter wants to get involved with that kind of company then I support it.
Have you started to think about several years down the line when these girls start wanting to date, what that’s going to be like?
Yeah, one of my friends is actually Eve, she was a WWE wrestler and she has a kind of class for the Gracie Academy. So, I’m definitely taking both of my daughters to her academy to teach them how to protect themselves. And yeah, don’t think for a second that the guy that’s taking out my daughter isn’t going to get a hard time. I mean, that’s what every dad dreams about.
I would expect no less! I only hope that cameras are still running at that time because that’d be something entertaining to see. Wrapping up here, going back to an episode of Miz And Mrs., I have to ask, do you think you’ll have to keep wrestling indefinitely to support Maryse’s addiction to truffles?
(Laughing) Yeah, I’ve got to be a WWE Superstar. I’ve got to be a host. I’ve got to be a reality star. I’ve got to be a movie star. I’ll continue to keep doing everything that I’m doing to help support my wife’s love of truffles.