Best known for his technical skills and persona in the ring, Michael Gregory Mizanin, widely known as The Miz, has always been a sight to behold in the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE). Leaving a bit to be desired when he first hit the ring, Miz’s unique success story has remained instrumental in his rise to fame. Over time, the professional wrestler has been able to acquire an array of fans who are willing to root for him all through his professional endeavours.
The Miz garnered his first notable fan base as a reality TV star following his appearance in the tenth season of MTV’s The Real World and its spinoff series, Real World/Road Rules Challenge. However, his biggest accomplishment remains his victory at the Money in the Bank challenge, as well as his first and only WWE Championship in 2010. Unsurprisingly, the professional wrestler has had people prying into his life outside the ring, with many wondering if his WWE persona is an insight to who he is in real life.
A Look At His Life Before He Became Famous As The Miz
The American wrestler was born on October 8, 1980, in Parma, Ohio. He was raised by his mother Barbara Pappas as his parents are divorced. Mike’s father’s name is George Mizanin and the wrestler has two half-siblings named Jimmy and Tonia from his mother’s second marriage.
Growing up as an athletic child, The Miz was involved in various sporting activities, including basketball, karate, and baseball. He even received a black belt for his karate skills. Mike was a student at Ohio-based Normandy High School and after graduation, he enrolled in the Miami University to pursue a degree in Business, but he left halfway to be part of a reality television show, The Real World.
He also took part in the show’s multiple spinoff series like the Real World/Road Rules Challenge and was able to win its season 5 challenge, Battle of the Seasons.
During his college year, The Miz was a member of the Theta Chi fraternity. It is said that his first job before going to Miami University for his degree was as a cook at his father’s sandwich shop known as Mr. Hero.
He Began His Pro Wrestling Career With UPW In 2003
Mizani took a seven-year-long break from the Real World/Road Rules Challenge to build a career in wrestling. First, he joined and got himself trained at the Ultimate Pro Wrestling (UPW) and made his ring debut in 2003 with his ring name as The Miz. The following year, he joined WWE’s show Tough Enough and even though he lost to mixed martial artist Daniel Puder, his participation on the show was a huge stepping stone for his big break in WWE.
After a much-required training at Deep South Wrestling (DSW) and Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW), he finally got a call to host a TV wrestling program called Smackdown. On July 23, 2012, The Miz received his very first Intercontinental Championship after contesting at the 1000th episode of Raw.
He has since then received more awards for his wrestling endeavours. His awards include WWE United States Championship (2 times), World Tag Team Championship, Fifth Grand Slam Champion, and the Slammy Awards, to mention a few.
Wrestling and Acting Are His Biggest Sources of Income
The Miz’s salary and net worth stem majorly from his wrestling career, as well as roles in numerous television programs. So far, he has a net worth of about $9 million with his annual salary as a professional wrestler estimated at $2.5 million. It is said that he pockets an additional 5% of that amount through merchandise sales and PPV share.
While it is widely held that wrestling is his major source of income, it is possible that earnings from the movie and television roles he has played rivals that. Thus far, he has been a part of at least 12 films and 35 TV shows. Even as details of what he earned for the projects are not known to the public, there is no doubt that it is not a chicken feed.
His huge earnings have helped him live a luxurious lifestyle with his family. He even bought a castle-like house in January 2018 and named it Castle MarMiz.
Being a Heel Has No Place In His Family Life
If you are a serious wrestling fan, you would know that a heel is a wrestler known for being the bad fellow. This has defined The Miz’s wrestling career as he hardly wrestles as the good guy.
From what we gathered, his “bad guy” character dates back to when he was participating in The Real World Show. The Miz was characterized as arrogant and aggressive; he later divulged that he developed the character to suit the unforgiving environment of the reality show.
As the line between real life and fiction can be easily blurred, it is not a surprise that many have come to assume that The Miz’s bad guy character in the ring is a reflection of who he is in real life. This is very far from the truth as the wrestler is a jovial and loving fellow. This is obvious in the way he dotes on his wife and kids.
The Miz’s Wife Was Once a Wrestler
Outside his professional life, The Miz maintains a very healthy relationship with his wife Maryse Ouellet, whom he married on February 20, 2014. Maryse used to be The Miz’s longtime girlfriend and a professional wrestler.
The Canadian-American lady is also a well-known actress, glamour model, businesswoman, and reality star. She was born in Montreal, Quebec, but spent much of her years in Edmundston, New Brunswick.
Maryse made her WWE debut in 2006 but she officially signed a WWE developmental contract on August 24, 2007. In addition to her professional wrestling career, Maryse has appeared in a number of films and TV shows, some of which include Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!, Enter the Fist and the Golden Fleece, Redemption Song, and Total Divas.
Following her release from the WWE in 2011, she veered into business, establishing her clothing and jewellery line called House of Maryse.
The Miz and Maryse got engaged in 2013 and the following year, they exchanged their marital vows in the Bahamas. On March 27, 2018, they welcomed their daughter named Monroe Sky Mizanin. The wrestler and his family later relocated to Austin, Texas and on February 17, 2019, the couple broke the news about expecting their second child. Also a daughter, she was born on the 20th of September 2019 and named Madison Jade Mizanin.