The following is an excerpt from an interview with WWE Superstar The Miz. The interview comes courtesy of BaltimoreSun.com.
Youâ€™ve talked many times about how you were ostracized in the WWE locker room in the past and even kicked out of the locker room for six months at one point. At what point did things begin to change, and whatâ€™s it like for you in the locker room now that youâ€™re WWE champion?
I believe that people still donâ€™t think that I deserve to be WWE champion. The fact is Iâ€™m always going to have naysayers. Youâ€™re always going to have haters. It really doesnâ€™t bother me because I just rise above it. I kind of use all of their negative energy to basically throw out there into the WWE Universe, and what I get back is the WWE championship. So I never really listened to what anyone else ever said. As far as the turning point, there wasnâ€™t really a turning point. I think itâ€™s just that Iâ€™ve been gaining and gaining more respect and earning my stripes, so thatâ€™s kind of how itâ€™s happened.
Was there ever a point when things got so bad in the locker room that the thought of quitting crossed your mind?
Oh, I think thereâ€™s always a time in everyoneâ€™s life when theyâ€™re like, â€œDo I really want to go through this?â€ Whenever somethingâ€™s really hard you always question yourself, and I had many times when I questioned myself, but I always rose above it. Iâ€™m the type of person that doesnâ€™t quit. I just keep going and give my best effort because I donâ€™t want to look back on my life when Iâ€™m like 80 or 90 and say, â€œMan, I wish I would have done this, I wish I would have done that.â€ I basically go out and do it.
Have any of the WWE veterans who gave you a hard time such as JBL come up to you and said, â€œHey, youâ€™ve earned your stripes,â€ or admitted that they were wrong about you or apologized?
Itâ€™s funny with JBL. In front of all the boys back in the day he would always be making fun of me or saying [imitating JBLâ€™s voice], â€œMiz, I look forward to your amazing work. Youâ€™re a gift from God.â€ But whenever no one was around, he would come up to me and say, â€œYouâ€™re doing a good job.â€ Heâ€™d always give me a little pat on the back. Most people think he was really, really bad to me and this kind of stuff â€“ and, granted, there were times â€“ but there were also times when he sat me down and said, â€œListen, youâ€™re doing a good job. This is what youâ€™re doing wrong. This is what you have to do to get to the next level.â€ So he has helped me as well.
So, since winning the title, have any veterans come up to you and said, â€œHey, I have to give you credit?â€
There are a lot of people who have given me credit where credit was due. It wasnâ€™t the people who were making fun of me or the haters and that kind of stuff. It was more just positive stuff. Like Shawn Michaels, I saw him at Tribute to the Troops and he came up to me and said, â€œCongratulations. Youâ€™ve really worked hard for it and youâ€™re doing a great job right now.â€ Jim Ross has done that as well. Most people are pretty proud of what Iâ€™ve done and what Iâ€™ve accomplished, and Iâ€™m not even done. Now that I have the WWE championship, I have to work twice as hard to keep it.