The Miz has had a career in WWE that few wrestlers could only dream of, but that was never the original plan.
Debuting as part of 2004’s Tough Enough, the future two-time WWE Grand Slam winner would come second, losing out to Daniel Puder.
In 2006, The Miz was introduced as the host of WWE Friday Night SmackDown but would quickly transition into a wrestling role.
One of Miz’s talents that has made him such a versatile asset to WWE is his ability to cut a promo.
Speaking to Off the Beat, Miz explained that WWE recognized his talents on the microphone, but initially had no plans for him to wrestle.
“They were like, ‘You impressed us so much that maybe there is something for you here.’ They brought me up to Connecticut to commentate. Joey Styles brought me up with Todd Grisham and Michael Cole, they brought me up and I had to do a take of commentating. They told me, ‘we might bring you in as a commentator or interviewer.’”
“‘We might bring you in as a commentator or interviewer.’”
WWE’s reaction to The Miz impressing them in 2004.
The A-Lister added that after pleading his case, saying he wanted to be bigger than The Rock and Hulk Hogan, WWE allowed him a developmental deal.
Now under a developmental deal, Miz reported to Deep South Wrestling, the promotion’s training facility at the time.
Speaking about his experience in DSW, the WWE Superstar said that he quickly realized that being under contract was no guarantee of being successful.
“They didn’t think I was going to be much of anything, to be honest, you could kind of tell, ‘let’s see what we got here.’ They gave me this developmental contract and I was like, ‘I’m making more than this doing Real World and The Challenge. I’m not taking a pay cut to do this.’ I had to think about that.”
Miz added that he would eventually realize the importance of taking one step back in order to take two steps forward.
The A-Lister would become the first DSW Heavyweight Champion under WWE, winning a tournament and besting Mike Knox in the finals.