The History of The Miz vs. John Morrison
It’s been said that good friends make better enemies. I would say this is certainly true with real-life friends The Miz and John Morrison. They first met as in-ring rivals and were occasional partners before becoming a dedicated tag team. Together, Miz and Morrison created a dynasty. They became one of the best tag teams of the 2000’s because of the amazing chemistry they had in the ring and their WWE.com show, The Dirt Sheet.
After their split in 2009, they renewed their feud. It’s become one of the longest and most interesting in WWE history. I think it’s because they both so entertaining every time they interact. When they are together, they seem to bring out the best in each other, both on the microphone and in the ring. It’s a trait seen in other famous pairings such as HBK and HHH and Edge and Christian.1
Unfortunately, the WWE doesn’t recognize their whole history. They focus on their tag team a bit and everything that occurred after they broke up. However, WWE usually ignores the feud Miz and Morrison had before teaming together.
Personally, I think their entire rivalry is interesting because you get a sense of how the feud and both men have changed over time. In addition, you realize how evenly matched they are and how deeply their careers are intertwined. Because of my interest, I’ve decided to document their entire feud.2
1. Interestingly, those teams are also known for their close friendships outside the ring, just like Miz and Morrison. I don’t believe it’s a coincidence.
2. I tried to get as detailed as I could, without overshadowing the narrative. I only focus on their feud here, but I might change it and include their partnership in future revisions. Also, I might recap the matches a bit more and add more The Dirt Sheet anecdotes.
2007: The ECW Championship and Egos
In the beginning of 2007, John Morrison didn’t exist. He was Johnny Nitro, former Intercontinental Champion and part of the tag team MNM. After Joey Mercury left the WWE, Nitro was split up from his manager Melina and remained stuck in the midcard on Raw. The writers there had no idea what to do with him outside the I-C title picture. The Miz was in a similar situation. After hosting the Diva Search and Smackdown, he became a full time wrestler. He also stuck in the midcard without anywhere to go. Instead of being left to fade into obscurity, they were moved over to ECW1 where the writers saw their talent and wanted to give them a chance.
On June 19, 2007, Johnny Nitro debuted on ECW against Nunzio2. He went on to win the ECW Championship that Sunday at Vengeance: Night of Champions by defeating CM Punk. On July 17th, Nitro came out with a new look and announced that he was now John Morrison, The Shaman of Sexy. Morrison retained his ECW Championship until September 4th when lost the title to Punk because he was suspended for 30 days for a wellness violation.
The Miz joined ECW on July 10th and also debuted against Nunzio. Miz entered the ECW Championship picture a month later. He was in a Fatal 4Way to determine the number one contender to JoMo’s title on the August 28th ECW. Morrison insulted Miz during a promo he gave that night about the four men in the match. Miz was unsuccessful in the 4Way3 and didn’t re-enter the title picture for two months.
The feud between the two didn’t really start until Morrison returned from suspension in October. At that time, it was about two things. The first was the ECW Championship. The second was pride and ego. Both men were known for being extremely vain and egotistical. Joey Styles and Taz would often mention it in their commentary. The rivalry was about who was better and also who could get in the last word. It was a game of one-upmanship.
In the beginning of October, they fought in the hopes the WWE fans would choose them to take on Punk for the title at Cyber Sunday (CS.) On October 16th, they teamed up4 with Big Daddy V to take on Punk and his partner Kane. They lost after Morrison ran into Miz, causing him to be chokeslammed and pinned by The Big Red Machine. After the match, the cameras cut back stage to Miz, who was holding his neck. Morrison confronted and blamed him for their loss. JoMo then challenged Miz to a match later that night, in the hopes of beating him and gaining more CS votes. At first, Miz refused, but changed his mind after sucker punching Morrison. The match did go on, but it was more of a fist fight than a wrestling match. After a few minutes, Big Daddy V came down to the ring and destroyed both men and ending the match in a no contest. This was the first time they wrestled each other and it was pretty awkward.
The next week, JoMo interrupted Miz’s promo and the two exchanged words. They continued to fight backstage, but were still put into a tag team match with Punk and Balls Mahoney5. Miz and Morrison lost the match when Miz clotheslined JoMo, leading to a GTS from Punk and the pin.
On October 28th, at Cyber Sunday, Miz was voted to be Punk’s opponent in the title match. He lost, but would get another chance in another number one contender match against Morrison. This one was much better than their first. It was a competitive, but not anything like the matches we would see between them in 2010 and 2011. JoMo won after hitting The Moonlight Drive. Punk defended the ECW title against Morrison the next week. Morrison lost after Miz came down to the ring and distracted him by throwing his hat at him. Miz brought it up when he and Morrison did commentary together during Punk’s match with Jamie Noble on the November 13th ECW. While they were still developing their in-ring chemistry, they had it in spades on microphone. Their commentary is hilarious with each man trying to outdo the other.6
On November 16th, they won and defended the WWE Tag Team Titles on Smackdown by beating Matt Hardy and MVP twice in one night. However, Miz and Morrison still competed against each other in the triple threat ECW Title match with Punk at Survivor Series. The match is extremely good and I highly recommend all fans of Miz and Morrison watch it. There is a wicked spot where Punk hits a hurricanrana off the top turnbuckle on JoMo, which sends him into Miz, who catches and powerbombs him. Also, they hit their current finishers on each other for the first time. At the time, Miz was still using The Reality Check as his main finisher, but hits the Skull Crushing Finale on JoMo. While Morrison was still using The Moonlight Drive as his primary finisher, he manages to hit Starship Pain on Miz.7 But neither man’s efforts were enough and in the end, CM Punk retained the title.
1. ECW originally started as a revival of the South Philly promotion, but over time became a third WWE brand. It was a vehicle for new talent and veterans to advance their careers. ECW saw wrestlers like Morrison, Miz, CM Punk, Evan Bourne, Jack Swagger, William Regal, Mark Henry, Zack Ryder, and Christian get a chance to main event regularly and/or become champions.
2. Better known the ECW faithful as Little Guido.
3. CM Punk won and went on to challenge Morrison for the title on September 4, 2007.
4. This was the second time they teamed up. The first was on 8/21/2007, when they took on CM Punk and The Boogeyman.
5. Miz had been feuding with Balls over Kelly Kelly, who was in his employ as part of Extreme Expose’.
6. Personally, hearing Morrison admit he lost to Miz’s hat is one of the funniest things I’ve ever heard him say.
7. They actually do this in a few other matches against each other in 2008 and 2009. I think they were practicing using the moves on each other before adopting them as finishers.
2008: A Tag Team Dynasty
After Survivor Series 2007, Miz and Morrison turned their attention to defending the tag team titles against teams, like Jesse and Festus, CM Punk and Kane, and Cryme Tyme. They also took on legendary teams like The Hardys and D-Generation X. They won the WWE Tag Team titles, World Tag Team titles, and two Slammys1 during their time together. Miz and Morrison created a tag team dynasty, which eventually lead them to be called “The Greatest Tag Team of the 21st Century!”2
Even though they were tag team partners and primarily focused on defending their titles, a slight rivalry continued to exist. Miz and Morrison each wrestled a few singles matches, but only a small number of those were against each other. On the January 22nd ECW, the two were in a battle royal with Tommy Dreamer, Kane, and Shelton Benjamin to prepare for the Royal Rumble. They were also in the Rumble itself, but neither man won those matches. On March 14, Morrison beat Miz on Smackdown to become the final participant in the Wrestlemania XXIV Money in the Bank ladder match. The match didn’t drive a wedge between the two partners. Miz was supportive of Morrison and hopeful he would win it.
They faced once again, but in a Fatal 4Way to determine the number 1 contender for the ECW title on the July 22nd. They were joined by Matt Hardy and Finlay. Hardy won and took on Mark Henry for the title. Later in the Summer, both Miz and Morrison competed in qualifying matches to be part of the ECW Championship Scramble at Unforgiven. Morrison lost his match, but Miz won. During the ECW “After the Bell” segment, they cut a promo and it was clear that JoMo was a bit jealous of Miz, even though he claimed not to be.
On September 23rd, Miz and Morrison were forced to wrestle each other again by ECW GM Teddy Long after both men questioned his “New Superstar Initiative.”3 The winner of the match had to immediately take on Ricky Ortiz. They had serious chemistry in the match. There were a lot of counters and reversals. No one won this match as neither man could get up before the ref counted to 10 after a nasty top rope spot.4 Ortiz entered the ring after the match and attacked both men. While Miz and Morrison didn’t mention the match on The Dirt Sheet, they did the next week on ECW, but only to claim that it was the “Match of the Year.” They didn’t wrestle each other again in 2008.
Miz and Morrison were the World Tag Team Champions in the beginning of 2009, yet cracks started to show. On the January 20th ECW, Miz and Morrison competed in another Fatal 4Way match, this time with Finlay and Mark Henry. Morrison won the match by pinning Miz, leading to a hysterical “After the Bell.” During the segment, they argue about a number of topics, including why Morrison pinned Miz, the existence of roll-ups at The Palace of Wisdom5, and if Miz really does nine hours of cardio a day.6
After the Royal Rumble, they became involved in a feud with The Colóns, Primo and Carlito. The feud escalated until Wrestlemania XXV. At the PPV, they took on Primo and Carlito to unify the WWE and World Tag Team titles. Miz and Morrison lost, making The Colóns the first Unified Tag Team Champions.
During 2008 and early 2009, they occasionally made fun of each other on The Dirt Sheet, their popular WWE.com show. The jokes were more lighthearted and done for laughs, rather than to spite each other. That would change after their break up.
1. They won the 2008 “Tag Team of the Year” and “Best WWE.com Exclusive” Slammys. Sadly, they failed to win the “Best Musical Performance” Slammy. Ironically, they were beaten by R-Truth.
2. Insert dramatic head turn here.
3. The “New Superstar Initiative” aimed to bring new talent into the ECW Brand and introduced wrestlers like Jack Swagger and Evan Bourne to the WWE audience.
4. I’m calling it a spot, but it could have been a botch. I couldn’t tell, so they’re getting the benefit of a doubt.
5. They don’t have roll-ups at The Palace of Wisdom.
6. According to Morrison, it’s not possible. When would he sleep?
2009: The Feud Begins Again
After losing the unification match, their relationship went downhill quickly. The 2009 Draft was held on the April 13th. Miz, accompanied by Morrison, took on Kofi Kingston for a draft pick. JoMo interfered in the match and got Miz disqualified. Raw won the pick and it was surprising to say the least.1 Miz got drafted to Raw, breaking up the “Greatest Tag Team of the 21st Century.” After the match, Miz turned on Morrison and gave him a Reality Check. The next night, Morrison wrestled Evan Bourne in his last ECW match before being traded in the supplemental draft to Smackdown.
They traded jabs and argued on The Dirt Sheet until the last taped episode. However, Miz and Morrison didn’t face off in the ring right away. Miz started a feud with John Cena. He reinvented himself and “The Chick Magnet” became “The Awesome One.” On the October 5th episode of Raw, he challenged and beat Kofi Kingston to win the US Championship, his first singles title in the WWE. Morrison turned face on Smackdown and won his third Intercontinental Championship from Rey Mysterio on September 4th.
In October, Miz and Morrison met for the first time since their break-up in April. On the October 16th Smackdown, they hosted one more Dirt Sheet episode to promote their upcoming match at the first Bragging Rights PPV. This is the first time we hear “The Rockers Argument.”2 The main focus of that Dirt Sheet and their feud since breaking up has been who is the “Jannetty” and who is the “Michaels” of the duo.
At Bragging Rights, most people expected Morrison to beat Miz, like he did in the past. Instead, Miz came out victorious. He was the only man from Raw to win his interpromotional match at the PPV. The match is pretty good, as is the promo video they played before the match.3 It’s obvious how much Miz had improved as a wrestler since the last time they met back in September 2008. Morrison pulls out a lot of high-risk and aerial moves, which is eventually what does him in. The Bragging Rights match is another one I recommend to Miz and Morrison fans.
At the next month’s Survivor Series, Team Morrison, consisting of JoMo, Matt Hardy, Evan Bourne, Shelton Benjamin, and Finlay, took on Team Miz, made up of The Miz, Drew McIntyre, Sheamus, Dolph Ziggler, and Jack Swagger in a traditional Survivor Series match. Team Miz won, with The Miz, Sheamus, and Drew McIntyre as the survivors. Morrison was the last member of his team to be eliminated when he was pinned by Sheamus.
1. Honestly, I could see the breakup coming, but not Miz going to Raw. I really thought he would have gone to back Smackdown and Morrison to Raw. It was probably better it happened the way it did. Smackdown gave JoMo the opportunity to show off his wrestling skills, while Raw gave Miz the chance to show off his promo skills.
2. The Rockers were a famous team back in 1980’s and very early 1990’s. They were Shawn Michaels and Marty Jannetty. Michaels became HBK, the Showstopper. Jannetty became best known for being HBK’s tag team partner. The term “Jannetty” has come to be used to refer to the weaker and less successful member of a tag team.
3. The video is slanted toward Morrison and makes fun of Miz quite a bit.
2010: The Rivalry Heats Up
While Miz ended 2009 as the United States Champion, he lost it in May 2010. Morrison lost the Intercontinental Title at the first Tables, Ladders, and Chairs (TLC) PPV to Drew McIntyre. This wasn’t a terrible thing, as it left him free to team up with R-Truth in January 2010, forming the team of Truth and Wisdom.1 Miz also formed a tag team with The Big Show, called ShowMiz. They beat D-X and The Straight Edge Society to become the Unified Tag Team Champions on Raw. Over on Smackdown, Truth and Wisdom defeated The Hart Dynasty and Cryme Tyme to earn a Tag Team Title shot at Wrestlemania XXVI.
However, both teams couldn’t wait to meet each other. On the March 8th Raw, they wrestled and fought to a no contest. The ref couldn’t keep control of all four men, so he threw the match out. The four men met in singles matches in a preview of their Wrestlemania showdown. On March 22nd, Miz and Morrison wrestled again. This time, Morrison won with Starship Pain. This marks the first and only time he has beaten Miz one-on-one. At Wrestlemania, ShowMiz retained their titles. Truth and Wisdom got one more shot at ShowMiz at Extreme Rules, during the Tag Team Gauntlet match. They lost.2
Miz and Morrison also met briefly in the 2010 Rumble. After he entered the match, Miz attacked Morrison. He could only get two hits in before MVP3 ran into the ring and eliminated himself and Miz.
On April 26th, the WWE held its annual draft. Morrison moved from Smackdown to Raw with The Miz.4 It was obvious they would meet again in the ring and they did. Miz regained the US Championship during a Fatal 4Way on the June 14th Raw by beating R-Truth (the current US Champ), Morrison, and Zack Ryder.5 They also met at the first Money in the Bank PPV during the Raw MITB ladder match. They were joined by Randy Orton, Evan Bourne, Mark Henry, Chris Jericho, Edge, and Ted DiBiase. Miz went on to win the match and the coveted briefcase containing the title shot.
Miz and Morrison also feuded on NXT Season Two. Both men had rookies that season. Morrison had Eli Cottonwood6 and Miz had Alex Riley.7 The rookies never fought, but Miz and Morrison exchanged verbal jabs and faced each other on August 10th. The two were arguing over whether or not Team WWE (John Cena, Bret Hart, Edge, Chris Jericho, R-Truth, and Morrison) needed Miz to defeat The Nexus (Seven of the Season One NXT rookies.) Morrison challenged Miz to the match, saying that he would prove Team WWE didn’t need him.8 JoMo lost once again.
At Night of Champions in September, Miz lost his US Title to Daniel Bryan. On September 27, Miz and Riley teamed up to take on Bryan and Morrison. Miz pinned Bryan and all four men brawled outside the ring. It inspired the Anonymous Raw GM to make a Triple Threat, Submissions Count Anywhere match for the US Title between Bryan, Morrison, and Miz at Hell in a Cell. It was a fantastic match.9 I highly recommend it, as it has everything you could want. It had drama, wrestling, and exciting spots. Bryan retained his title by making Miz tap in LaBell Lock, but Morrison got a little revenge on Miz by putting him in the Tarantula and the Texas Cloverleaf.
After fighting for a year and a half, Miz and Morrison found themselves as tag team partners again at Bragging Rights. Both men were part of Team Raw, captained by The Miz. He and JoMo were joined by Sheamus, Ezekiel Jackson, CM Punk, R-Truth, and Santino, with Alex Riley ringside. Team Raw faced Team Smackdown was led by The Big Show and supported by their mascot Hornswoggle. Show was joined by Jack Swagger, Edge, Alberto Del Rio, Rey Mysterio, Kofi Kingston, and Tyler Reks.10 It was strange to see Miz actively cheering on Morrison but unfortunately, they didn’t do any of the tag team combo moves they were known for.
After the Bragging Rights, Miz continued to plan when and how he would cash in his Money in the Bank briefcase. The opportunity finally presented itself the night after Survivor Series. Wade Barrett and The Nexus softened up Randy Orton before and during Barrett’s title rematch on Raw. After beating Barrett, Miz and Riley came to ringside and with one Skull Crushing Finale (SCF,) The Miz became the WWE Champion.
But it turns out, Morrison was right behind him. After Bragging Rights, JoMo got involved in a feud with former WWE Champion Sheamus.11 They met at Survivor Series and in the King of the Ring finals on Raw. The feud moved continued into the TLC PPV. The two met in a ladder match to determine the number one contender to Miz’s title. Morrison won.12
The next night on Raw, Miz decided to do an “Awesome Christmas Carol,” staring himself, Michael Cole, and Alex Riley, which ended once Morrison interrupted and confronted him. Eventually a fight broke out, with Lawler, Orton, and Sheamus also getting involved. It prompted the Anonymous Raw GM to make 6 man tag team match with Miz, Riley, and Sheamus against Lawler, Morrison, and Orton. Lawler pins Miz after he takes an RKO from Orton.
On the December 27th Raw, Morrison interrupted another promo by Miz and Riley. During the promo, Morrison added a stipulation to the match between him and Riley that night. If JoMo won, he would get to choose when the title match would take place and the match’s stipulation. If Riley won, Morrison would give up his title shot. Miz agreed. When Miz tried to interfere in the match, the referee threw him out. Morrison pinned Riley after hitting him with a running knee.
Immediately after the match, Morrison revealed to Lawler that the WWE Title match would take place the next week during the very first Raw of 2011 and it would be a Falls Count Anywhere (FCA) match.13 The Miz looked worried and we all believed he had every reason to be worried, as Morrison was on an incredible roll. Later that night, Miz lost to Lawler via count out, thanks to Morrison’s interference.
1. Or, if you prefer, Black Magic and the White Shadow. I actually liked that name better. It made them sound like a 1960’s psychedelic rock band.
2. ShowMiz lost to The Hart Dynasty, who would eventually win the tag titles from ShowMiz.
3. MVP and Miz were in a nasty feud over the US Championship at the time. Miz sneak-attacked MVP and thought he had prevented him from entering the match. MVP recovered from the attack and ran in while Miz was in the ring.
4. Morrison was the third pick overall.
5. They’ve faced each other in a few Fatal 4Way matches. This would be the third and final.
6. Who could forget the famous “mustache” promo from Cottonwood? Classic.
7. Miz had Riley join him on the main roster as his apprentice after NXT, even though he didn’t win.
8. Morrison remained on Team WWE for Summerslam and Miz’s supposed spot was given to Daniel Bryan.
9. I’m a fan of all three men and this is one of my favorite matches of all time. In my opinion, this was the second best PPV match of year. The first being HBK and Undertaker at Wrestlemania.
10. Morrison eliminated former World Heavyweight Champion Jack Swagger, before being speared and pinned by Edge. Miz would be the final remaining member of Team Raw, but ultimately suffered the same fate as Morrison, giving Team Smackdown the win.
11. The feud started over something, well someone, silly – Santino. Morrison hated the way Sheamus was bullying him and came to his aid. Even though it came from strange origins, it became a hot feud with competitive matches full of high flying and power moves.
12. Their ladder match made it onto the “Ladder Match 2: Crash and Burn” DVD.
13. Why their match wasn’t at the Royal Rumble, I will never know.
2011: A Fight to the End
At the end of 2010, both men were experiencing incredible pushes.1 We were all excited for their match and hoping it was half as good as Morrison and Sheamus’ FCA match back in September. The FCA match was the opening match, making it the very first match of the year. It set the standard for television matches in 2011. Easily the best match of Miz’s entire title reign, it had everything that you could want, with solid wrestling and crazy-awesome spots to intensity, passion, and emotion. It was competitive and at times I really thought the match could go either way, especially when Morrison took out Riley with a knee on the barrier. Eliminating Riley took out Miz’s greatest ally and best distraction.2 After Morrison missed Starship Pain and put himself through a table, he still kicked out of Miz’s pin attempt. Frustrated and ready to end the match, Miz gave Morrison a SCF on the outside of ring and got the 1-2-3. We went to commercial with the visual of a beat Morrison pushing himself up, glaring at and crawling towards a relieved, yet still concerned Miz.3 This is another match I recommend for every Miz and Morrison fan.
Morrison moved on putting in a fantastic showing in Raw’s Elimination Chamber match, and teaming with Snooki and Trish Stratus at Wrestlemania XXVII.4 Miz faced Lawler at Elimination Chamber and went to Wrestlemania, where he successfully defended the title against John Cena.5 But their paths would cross again soon.
One week after Wrestlemania, on the April 11th Raw, there was a gauntlet match to determine the new number one contender to the WWE title. The match was after Cena, Orton, Morrison, Truth, and Dolph Ziggler made good arguments as to why they deserved a title shot. Miz and Alex Riley sat at ringside during the match. Miz did commentary for the match.6 Morrison was surprisingly unsuccessful and lost in his first match to R-Truth, who had already beaten Ziggler.7 The match ended when Miz and A-Ry interfered in the final match between Truth and Cena. It was ruled a double disqualification and it decided that both Truth and Cena would get a title shot in a Triple Threat match at Extreme Rules.
However, Morrison wasn’t so quick to let go of his rematch. The next week at Raw in London, he tricked his old partner Truth into giving him a match to celebrate this win the week before. By the time the promo was over, JoMo had made Truth agree to put his title shot on the line as well. The two had a short match and Morrison easily defeated Truth, which enraged Truth.8 Miz was also unhappy about Morrison replacing Truth at Extreme Rules. He unsuccessfully staged a protest and the title match went on as planned.
At Extreme Rules, Miz took on Cena and JoMo in the steel cage main event. This match was really good and is listed as one of the Top Matches of 2011 by WWE.com, but I don’t think it was as a good as their FCA match.9 Miz and Morrison fought on top of the cage a few times. Morrison came close on several occasions to winning and was about walk out the cage door, when Truth appeared and attacked him. The beat down pretty much focused on Morrison’s neck10 and took JoMo out of the match, leaving Cena and Miz to fight it out. One Attitude Adjustment off the top rope later and Cena started his 10th WWE Championship reign.
The next night on Raw, Morrison was supposed to wrestle Truth. Truth once again attacked his neck and the match never happened. Morrison took time off to get neck surgery, but made an appearance at the All Star episode of Raw on June 13th when he was supposed to take on Truth. He was attacked once more and put back on the injured list. On July 25th, Morrison returned and attacked Truth and let him know their problems were far from over. They met a few times afterwards in singles matches, with Truth getting the upper hand.
Miz continued to feud with Cena until Over the Limit. He was unable to regain the WWE title there. The next night, he fired Riley, blaming him for the loss. They feuded over through May, June, and July. Miz did not win MITB and wasn’t able to beat Rey Mysterio in the finals of the WWE Championship Tournament.
Miz and Morrison met again in a tag team match on the August 1st Raw. Morrison and Mysterio took on Miz and Truth.11 Miz and Truth won after Truth hit the “Shut Up!” and pinned Morrison. After the match Awesome Truth beat down JoMo with a water bottle to the head and a SCF. At Summerslam, they were on opposing sides again, this time in a 6 man tag team match. Morrison, Mysterio and Kingston defeated Miz, Truth, and Alberto Del Rio. Morrison’s team won the match.
While Awesome Truth gained speed, Morrison was in the US title picture with Riley, Ziggler, Ryder, and Jack Swagger. But even so, he was booked terribly, with the most embarrassing loss coming at the hands of Alberto Del Rio in 53 seconds.12 After taking on Rock and Cena at Survivor Series, Truth got wellnessed for 30 days, so the WWE thought the best way to write him off would be to have Awesome Truth break up. Miz attacked Truth after blaming him for their loss.
On the November 28th Raw, Miz continued the trend of attacking tag team partners by taking on Morrison in another FCA match. It was shorter and more brutal than their FCA at the beginning of the year. It started with Miz attacking Morrison from behind with a steel pipe. JoMo hobbled to the ring and fought the Miz, with everything he had and a kendo stick.13 Morrison chased Miz to the ramp before taking a header into the WWE sign and getting a SCF on the ramp. The ref stopped the match before Miz could pin Morrison because he knocked Morrison out, re-injuring him, and sending him out on a stretcher. Miz delivered a promo about taking about his former partners and putting over his toughness.
A few days later, John Laurinaitis, Executive Vice President of Talent Relations and Temporary Raw GM, storyline “future endeavored” Morrison. In reality, his contract expired.14 However, Miz still continues to mention how he took him out in promos on Raw, starting with the TLC contract signing between himself, CM Punk, and Alberto Del Rio. He also mentioned The Dirt Sheet and beating Morrison during his WWE.com Slammy Red Carpet exclusive interview. I’m assuming if or when Morrison returns, they will pick up their feud again, with an angry Morrison seeking to avenge his previous defeat.
1. They were at their peaks during that time too, or so we thought. Looking back, it’s really clear that Morrison was wrestling with a bad neck the entire time and considering the performances he gave during that period, it’s amazing. I still haven’t figured out when he was originally injured though.
2. In an age where wrestling seems so predictable, it was really refreshing and made me even more invested the outcome.
3. I remember afterwards the general consensus from fellow wrestling fans was that Miz and Morrison’s FCA match was the early Match of the Year candidate. I completely disagree with WWE putting it at the number 20 spot in its Top 25 Matches countdown. It belongs in the top 10 for sure. I’ll never understand why Morrison didn’t get a rematch at the Rumble. The FCA was PPV main event quality. They could have put on a great match there.
4. I’m not specifically addressing any rumors here. I will say that I feel Morrison’s neck problems were more to blame for his “depush” after Wrestlemania than any other issue.
5. It felt like Morrison was just waiting until it was his time to get the rematch he deserved. On the other hand, it felt like Miz took on Orton, Lawler, and Cena because he had to. Orton had to have a rematch at the next PPV. Lawler had to have the shot he’d never had before. Cena had to main event Wrestlemania in the title match.
6. It was very unusual commentary from The Miz. He made many outrageous claims and comments. It actually sounded very much like Morrison’s commentary from 2007, when he was still doing the rock star gimmick. I don’t know if it was the concussion or if he lost a bet and JoMo made him say it. Either way, it’s hysterical.
7. I think he lost the Gauntlet match on Raw because WWE didn’t know if he would be able to wrestle at Extreme Rules, so they went with someone they knew could. I think they added Morrison back the next week because he was cleared for the PPV.
8. Actually, the match wasn’t the most important thing. It was Truth’s heel turn after the match. He beat down Morrison and at the same time reinvented himself. Next week, Morrison would return the favor and attack Truth after a promo.
9. It felt awkward somehow. Maybe the cage was too confining for Morrison’s move set or Miz was a little nervous with this being his first cage match? Or maybe it was because the match really didn’t need Cena?
10. WWE was already starting to work the neck injury angle to explain Morrison’s leave of absence.
11. This is the beginning of Awesome Truth. Miz, Morrison, and Truth have all teamed together, with Miz and Morrison being the most successful. Although, Truth’s teams tend to have the more creative names.
12. It’s worth noting that Morrison really worked his neck problems into each match. He was so good that I honestly couldn’t tell if he was still recovering or faking it. Also, in hindsight, it’s clear they were using him to put his opponents such as Christian, Dolph Ziggler, and Alberto Del Rio over, even when it appeared he may be getting a push.
13. I wonder if it was a nod to their ECW beginnings, as the kendo stick is associated with the promotion/brand?
14. As far as we know, he hasn’t re-signed. For the most part, JoMo gets treated like an alumnus.
2012: In Limbo
This year has started off the way that last year ended. Miz continues to mention their last match from time to time, like during his promo on the January 23rd Raw. He did it during his feud with former partner R-Truth, as an example of what he will do to him if given the chance.
Not Just for WWE TV
The ring isn’t the only place Miz and Morrison faced off. Their feud crosses different kinds on media. They’ve actually competed on a number of game shows and TV competitions against each other. They were on “Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?” on back on September 29, 2009. They also were on Cartoon Network’s “Build Destroy Build” on March 3, 2010 and more recently, on Nickelodeon’s “Brain Surge” on October 13, 2011. On YouTube, Morrison and Miz fought during Miz’s lip sync battle with Keenan Cahill, which was posted on August 8, 2010. They also have traded jabs on Twitter, although Morrison likes to use that medium for that purpose quite a bit more than Miz does. Before their final match on November 28, WWE showed a simulation of their match using the WWE ’12 video game.
I actually remembered quite a bit of history. For some of the ECW matches and Bragging Rights 2009, I went back and watched them again. I used the Raw, Smackdown, and ECW episode listings on TV.com to verify episode dates and Wikipedia for some of the PPV dates and details (like who eliminated Morrison at the 2009 Survivor Series.) I also used the Online World of Wrestling website to help confirm results for some of the early 2010 Raw and Smackdown matches.
List of Recommended Matches
I recommend four matches that all Miz and Morrison fans should watch.
1. CM Punk vs. The Miz vs. John Morrison, Survivor Series 2007, Triple Threat for the ECW Title.
2. The Miz vs. John Morrison, Bragging Rights 2009, Champion vs. Champion.
3. Daniel Bryan vs. The Miz vs. John Morrison, Hell in a Cell 2010, Triple Threat Submissions Count Anywhere for the US Championship.
4. The Miz vs. John Morrison, 1/3/2011 Monday Night Raw, Falls Count Anywhere for the WWE Championship
Why Has Miz the Vast Majority of Their Matches Since the Split?
Before The Dirt Sheet Duo split, Morrison won every match he had with The Miz. Every single one. However, that changed after they broke up. Miz has won every match he’s had with Morrison, except of one.1
So why the change?
If Miz had lost to Morrison at Bragging Rights 2009, everyone would have said: “Of course! We always knew JoMo was the better half.” It would have destroyed The Miz. No one would have taken him seriously as a wrestler after that, even though he was the US Champion at the time. It would have killed his WWE career.
It was true in early 2011 too. If JoMo beat The Miz for the WWE Title during their FCA match, many fans would have said: “Of course Morrison would win when the Championship is on the line and it matters most!” They would also have overwhelmingly agreed that Miz’s cash in was a fluke. They would have said he was lucky, rather than he deserved it.2
Regardless of what people think about JoMo’s personal life or promo skills, he is still respected as a wrestler and athlete. Most of Miz’s critics downplay his wrestling ability and move set. They claim he’s not as good as many of his contemporaries, such as Dolph Ziggler.3 Having Miz beat JoMo cleanly implies that Miz is a good wrestler as well and worthy of being in the upper midcard and main event scene.
1. Morrison pinned Miz in a Wrestlemania XXVI preview match during the 3/22/2010 Raw.
2. Many people felt that way to start with. However, I disagree. I think Miz has proved he has the passion and drive of a champion. He has dedicated himself to The WWE, the fans, and professional wrestling.
3. I disagree with this as well. While it’s true that Miz is not a technical wizard, he is a smart wrestler. He knows how to work with his strengths and weaknesses. Miz has built a solid repertoire around basic mat work and hard strikes, rather than high-risk offense or complicated submissions.
Revision 2 Changes:
1. Revised and updated the Introduction.
2. Expanded the 2007 chapter.
3. Added the 3/22/2010 Raw match and Royal Rumble 2010.
4. Added a chapter for 2012.
5. Added video games to the “Not Just for WWE TV” section.
6. Made small grammar and style edits throughout.