Over the last two months, The Miz has hyped up his match at WrestleMania 33 that could possibly steal the entire show. Back in February, a feud between John Cena and himself escalated once Cena eliminated The Miz at Elimination Chamber. Just a week later, in a 10-man battle royal to determine a new #1 contender for the WWE Championship, The Miz was once again eliminated by John Cena. One week later on SmackDown Live, The Miz and his wife/manager Maryse called out Cena's influence backstage. The Miz TV segment ended with Nikki Bella coming to his rescue and getting struck by Maryse. Since then, a mixed tag team match has been officially announced for WrestleMania 33, which has the potential to put The Miz right back where he belongs: the WWE Championship chase.
Mike "The Miz" Mizanin has solidified himself as one of the top heels on SmackDown and possibly all of WWE. He has come a long way in his career since his rookie campaign. Before he was WWE Superstar The Miz, he was just Mike on The Real World, where he spent four years. There, "The Miz" was just a persona Mike used while on the show, always stating that it would make for a perfect wrestling gimmick someday. He wasn't wrong. After his tenure as a reality star, he pursed his goal of becoming a professional wrestler, beginning with Ultimate Pro Wrestling where The Miz became a reality. Despite being the runner-up on the fourth season of Tough Enough, WWE saw interest in Mike and was given a developmental deal.
The Miz began his WWE career as a heel on SmackDown, then ECW. The self-proclaimed "chick-magnet" teamed with John Morrison and captured his first WWE title in the WWE Tag Team Championship. The duo went on quite a run, winning gold twice. The Miz was hot as a tag team champion, but when he turned his back on Morrison, his true talent was spotlighted as a singles competitor.
On his own, The Miz found his true calling. He revamped his image, complete with new attire, his new Skull-Crushing Finale finisher, and his new "I'm The Miz and I'm Awesome" catchphrase. He won his first singles title (the United States Championship). He was the mentor for Daniel Bryan on NXT, although Bryan was eliminated early. He also mentored Alex Riley on the second season of NXT, getting all the way to the finale. The Miz struck gold when he won the Money in the Bank ladder match in 2010, guaranteeing him a shot at the WWE Championship. The Miz tried several times to cash in the briefcase, but was always interrupted. After holding the contract for nearly four months, The Miz struck The Viper Randy Orton who was fresh off retaining the championship against Wade Barrett. He was able to take Orton down easily, becoming WWE Champion in the process and the first ever Tough Enough contestant to ever win that world title. As champion, Miz retained the belt in several heavily fought matches, including a classic match on Monday Night Raw against former partner John Morrison. At WrestleMania 27—the first WrestleMania The Miz ever headlined—he retained his title against John Cena of all people, although he would lose it soon after at Extreme Rules in a Triple Threat match between himself, John Morrison and the new champion, Cena.
Sure, he was one of the best midcard heels and had memorable storylines with Damien Sandow/Damien Mizdow and The Rock and Cena. He even became a Hollywood star to promote WWE, including starring in the films The Marine 3: Homefront, The Marine 4: Moving Target and The Marine 5: Battleground, making dozens of television appearances. He even went back to his roots, being host of a Real World/Road Rules reunion special. WWE just never saw Miz as being someone to showcase WrestleMania again.
The Miz's current persona, "The A-Lister", has given his character new light. In CM Punk-like fashion, he took his real personal frustrations with the company and used it to propel him to the top. He became one of the top heels in the company, feeling mistreated and as if he feels he carries the company by going out and making all of the appearances and movies to help the company move forward.
To help his character more, he brought his former Diva wife Maryse with him to be his manager. With her help, he won the Intercontinental Championship a fifth time and used the title to boost his popularity with the "Never Ending Intercontinental Championship World Tour". The Miz is one of the stars to bring back prestige to the secondary titles, holding his for 188 days during that run. With title and wife in hand, The Miz became the top heel on SmackDown Live. By channeling his inner-Punk, he has verbally attacked SmackDown General manager Daniel Bryan on several occasions, recently going on a tirade that showcases why The Miz is hands-down the top heel in WWE right now
I think WWE finally realizes what they have with The Miz. He gets more air time than ever before and is no longer on losing streaks. The current feud with John Cena and Nikki Bella has gained momentum and is set to be one of the highlights of WrestleMania 33 on April 2nd.
His mic skills have improved to one of the best in the business, his move sets that were once criticized and labeled as poor and lazy now showcases the Figure Four-Leg Lock, and he has won over the WWE Universe with his promos and antics. He is in this prime and his character is hitting an all-time high.
No matter how his WrestleMania match plays out, which will be probably be Cena and Bella winning with a post-match proposal, The Miz should still come out hot after the loss. With Cena and Nikki rumored to take a long hiatus soon after WrestleMania, The Miz should enter the world title picture once more. Once the Orton/Wyatt feud plays out, The Miz can continue his tirade and rub it in WWE's face by winning the WWE Championship. He is surely a future Hall of Famer and I look forward to seeing The Miz showcased in the near future. Let's just hope WWE does not drop the ball again on "The Most Must-See WWE Superstar of All-Time".
What are your opinions on The Miz? Do you want to see him reach main event status again or would you rather him stay a midcard champion? Or are you on the side of Daniel Bryan and think he is a soft coward? Comment your thoughts below.