The WWE will launch itself entirely into the "New Era" Tuesday with the return of the WWE Draft on the first live episode of SmackDown (at 8:00 ET on USA Network).
With just one day until the entire WWE roster is divided, The Miz spoke to Fox Sports about why he deserves to go No. 1 overall, and how he celebrated the Cleveland Cavaliers’ NBA title.
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Fox Sports: I think I know the answer to this question, but who do you think will be taken first in the WWE Draft?
The Miz: Who do you think I would take, of course I’m going to say I’m the No. 1 draft pick. Why wouldn’t I be? I bring a value, I bring a prestige. I walk, talk and act like a star, and guess what? I am a star. I’m the Intercontinental Champion.
My stats don’t even need to be said, but I’ll say them anyway. I’m a 14-time champion. I’m a two-time Slammy award winner. I’ve done movies. I host my own show. How much more do you want in an athlete, in a star, than The Miz?
FS: If you had to make a pitch to the Raw or SmackDown GM, what separates you from WWE champion Dean Ambrose?
The Miz: Dean Ambrose has done one WWE Studios film, I’ve done five. Dean Ambrose has never main-evented WrestleMania. I’ve main-evented WrestleMania. Former WWE champion… I’m a 14-time champion! How many championships do you need to be the No. 1 draft pick? I’ve done more, I’ve been more, I’m more experienced, I’m more seasoned than Dean Ambrose.
Dean Ambrose is a fantastic superstar …. however, has he been in WWE as long as The Miz? Can he do the things that I can do? No, he can’t.
FS: Do you have a preference which show you’re drafted to?
The Miz: It’s one of those situations where you don’t know…. No one knows anything about the draft. Nothing. The only thing we know are the rules that were revealed on WWE.com yesterday.
FS: If you had the choice, would you rather work with Stephanie or Shane?
The Miz: You know, I’ve had trouble with both. I don’t know why everyone has to disagree with me, I think it’s because I get my lawyers, my agents, my managers, my Miz branding team involved with everything, and that kind of annoys a general manager and a commissioner. But I’m like Von Miller, man. I’m waiting for that guaranteed contract, and I’m going to sit out until they give me what I want. I feel like I am that type of athlete, that type of superstar.
FS: WWE announced that six NXT stars will also be drafted Tuesday, are there any wrestlers on the NXT roster who stand out to you as being ready to make the jump?
The Miz: Oh man. The talk of the town has been Finn Balor. Finn Balor has been killing it down there in NXT, and the fans love him. He looks like one of those guys who could be ready to be up here in WWE, but who knows what’s going to happen?
FS: Just a few months ago your wife Maryse made a surprise return to the WWE after a very long time away, what motivated her to become a performer again?
The Miz: Well you’d have to ask her that type of question, but if I’m speaking for myself, having her back has been such an improvement on everything as far as … when your wife’s out there looking at you ringside, you kinda want to show off. So that’s basically what I’ve been doing is trying to impress her and not lose, because your wife doesn’t want to be married to a loser. That’s what motivates me.
FS: Being from Cleveland, what was your reaction to the Cavaliers winning the NBA title?
The Miz: I think everyone that’s from Cleveland knows exactly where they were when the Cleveland Cavaliers won the NBA Finals. I was filming a movie, The Marine 5: Battleground, up in Vancouver, so I couldn’t be at the game but I watched it in my hotel room, with my wife – who could care less, by the way, about basketball because she’s from Montreal. So I’m sitting there by myself, just cheering, jumping up and down like a little schoolgirl, and Maryse is just like ‘why, I don’t understand why you’re so excited?’
You don’t get it. It’s been 52 years, we’ve had this drought! They just won the NBA Finals! She goes ‘yeah, so what?’
And, by the way, nobody in Canada cares. I called five different places to see who was throwing a party or a place where you can go and watch with a bunch of people that are fans of basketball. They wouldn’t even turn off the music at any of the restaurants to watch the game… but I enjoyed every moment of it. It’s incredible. Thank you to the entire Cleveland Cavaliers organization for bringing a championship. [They] were kind of late on it, I brought 14 to the city, but they didn’t throw me a parade with 1.3 million people. That’s why I went to Hollywood, I guess.
FS: Which Cleveland franchise will be the next to win a title?
The Miz: Indians, man. The Indians are on a roll right now. They’re looking really good, the pitching is coming together, the hitting is right-on. They’re looking like a championship-caliber team.