He just wanted a job and a paycheck. He did not want to start any trouble during a time he was making more money than any other point in his career.
Former WCW wrestler Norman Smiley was asked to join the minority lawsuit against the WCW filed by Sonny Onoo, but Smiley declined. Smiley spoke candidly about the lawsuit during a recent interview.
“You could see where they (those involved in the lawsuit) were coming from,” Smiley said. He noted that he had just received a pay raise shortly before the lawsuit began, and he was happy with his position in the company.
“My contract ended in August, and I then headed to Mexico,” said Smiley. In the meantime, he has kept busy with independent dates in England, Australia, Mexico and in the United States.
He has been using the “Screamin'” Norman Smiley gimmick during most of those matches, a character he first found hard to accept.
“I felt stupid screaming in the ring, but the gimmick gave me a chance to crossover because I was already a wrestler. I became more noticed when that gimmick was started.”
Smiley made light humour when discussing the angle where Mike Sanders stripped him of the Hardcore Title for not wanting to defend it.
“It was true. I didn’t want the belt. I didn’t feel the character was working in the way WCW wanted it to.”
Although he admits that he does not get to watch much WWF wrestling since they bought WCW, he feels the invasion angle wasn’t done correctly.
“It wasn’t strong enough to make an impression. When you have to bring people like Steve Austin onto the invading side, it dilutes what the angle was really about.”
He praised the signing of Hulk Hogan, Kevin Nash and Scott Hall by the WWF, although he feels the NWO angle is not the right way to bring them in.
“The NWO has been beaten to the ground.”
Smiley has also been included in a recent Insane Clown Posse song, “Still Stabbin’.”
The lyrics are, “I stabbed Norman Smiley in the middle of a match. He was like, ‘What are you doing?’ I was like, “F***ing relax.”
Smiley laughed when asked about the song. “I saw them and I was like, ‘I thought we were cool.’ They told me it was a joke. I guess it is cool to be in a song, although maybe it would be better to take if the lyrics were different.”
Smiley has been working shows for the XWF in the U.S. and the WWA outfit that is looking to hold their second PPV at the end of the month. He is still working independent shows mostly in the Southeast.
“Keeping busy,” Smiley sums up his days since leaving television a year ago.