Dolph Ziggler's brother, Ryan Nemeth, recently interviewed with VOC Nation and had plenty to say about his WWE release. He talked about his injury, what he was told by Road Dogg about his potential, the phone call he received when he got fired, and more. Here are some of the highlights of the interview:
On his injury and how it affected his career:
"I felt like I was on the way up… main event of every house show. Feeling good, good responses, good rapport… they loved me & Maddox together. Everything was going great. Dusty said they were looking for tag teams in WWE, main roster, & he picked us. Maddox got called up to be a referree & I was home rehabbing. Everyone would call me asking if I was debuting & my leg was in a cast & I can’t walk… I’m drooling on myself. I’m sleeping on the floor every night because I’m sad. So then I would tell them I come out at the end & I knock out Brock [Lesnar]. I’m happy for them. There are times I’m like, “everyone in this battle royal or whatever it is on Raw, I wrestled with all of them & I’m the only one not there.” That’s the kind of thought you have to acknowledge, accept, & let it go. I’m doing cool sh*t that they can’t do & I wouldn’t be able to do if I was still signed. Road Dogg was producing at NXT & he came over & goes ‘You are so good on camera & have so much personality. If your in-ring skills can eventually get to where your brother’s is & your brother’s microphone skills can get to where yours is, we can have tag champs for the next 100 years. Road Dogg told me that. You know when something makes you feel good? That lasted for weeks & months."
On how he found out he was being fired:
"I was eating lunch somewhere before an NXT house show. Mr Sakomoto kept calling & texting me like crazy. I called him back & he told me he got a phone call that he was released. I thought to myself, ‘We just started going. We had a long-time program written up. We just had our tag team started on NXT.’ All the creative guys were pumped about it. There is nothing funny on that show except for us. I thought this ruined everything… I have to start over again. Great. I have to redo everything again. This is one of my best friends. He has to leave the country. This sucks. & then I’m driving back to my house to pack my stuff for the show but, as I’m driving, I’m stopped at a red light & it hit me. I’m getting fired today. I totally knew it. Why would they axe Sakamoto? He didn’t have the best English & I was in the guy in NXT/WWE that all of the Japanese guys gravitated toward me. For one reason or another, they always became my buddies. He wanted me to call Canyon Semen to ask why he was fired.I was starting to put together a lot of clues. Then I had all these calls from Canyon Semen anyway. I thought, if I don’t answer, he can’t fire me. So I didn’t answer. It was originally my Dolph’s idea. I told him I think someone really wanted me out of here for the past 6 months & it finally worked. I won’t tell you everything he said but he said not to pick up the phone. He gave me the idea not to pick up the phone."
On the actual call he received to be fired and them telling Dolph first:
"I called him back eventually, “So-and-so finally convinced you to fire me, huh?’ & he goes ‘yup.’ He listed the reasons & I said ‘y’know that’s not true, right? Thanks for firing me, anyways.’ He goes, ‘Look, Ryan, I know you’re going to be a hit in the entertainment business & make millions of dollars.’ So I said, ‘Yeah I know. I told you that. I wanted it to be with you but I guess it will be with someone else.’ I remember thinking in my head, you’re releasing me from an entertainment company & the entire time you’re laughing. I hope you look back in 10 years & go, ‘Whoops!’ I said, ‘One last thing. Will you still let my brother be world champion?’ & he said ‘Yup!’ & then I hung up on him. I’m told I’m the blue chip, most hardworking, most entertaining NXT talent… my brother is World Champ for a second time… you’re telling me I’m done for? Let him think about that for a while. I handled it professionally & my own flavor & taste. My brother texted me, ‘Hey. So-and-so called me to tell me they’re releasing you. A very respectful company called someone who’s not me to tell me I was being released before they actually spoke to me. "