SmackDown 1000 was a big show that featured many names from the past, but the company didn’t reunite the classic commentary team of Michael Cole and Taz.
For many WWE fans, Cole and Taz were the definitive commentary team for SmackDown, and the former ECW World Heavyweight Champion recently shared his thoughts on why he wasn’t invited to the big episode.
Taz talked about SmackDown 1000 recently on The Taz Show, and he said that he believes he rubbed the company the wrong way when he left WWE on his own terms.
“What did Taz do so wrong? What did I do so wrong? I left and I left on my own terms. My contract was up the week going into WrestleMania, which was in the Orange Bowl in Florida. I wasn’t there. That was it. I was done at the Dallas TV before that. It was me and J.R. calling SmackDown, I don’t remember what we were calling; but, it was in Dallas. I officially gave notice to Vince [McMahon]. He knew I was giving notice because I gave notice to Kevin Dunn three weeks prior and they were trying to get me to stay. They were like, ‘Is it money?’ They offered me a new deal, which was a great deal. They always took care of me. No, it was nothing like that. I needed a fresh coat of paint. I had to get out of there. Anyway, bottom line is I did offer to work WrestleMania. I talked with Kevin Dunn and he didn’t want me to leave. They all liked me there and wanted to keep me in that role and it was a thing where I just had to go and when he mentioned WrestleMania and said, ‘Listen, I would never leave you in a lurch. Just fly me out there. I’ll work the show for free. Don’t worry about paying me. It’s all good.’ He’s like, ‘I appreciate that. I’ll talk with Vince. We’ll work it out. We’ll figure it out.’ About a week later I saw Vince in Dallas and I officially gave word, shook his hand, said I was leaving – in his mock office in Dallas. He and I were crying and hugging, ‘I’m gonna miss you.’ I thanked him for everything. It was great. I remember talking to Stephanie [McMahon] and Triple H……Stephanie was just looking at me, ‘I’m really surprised. Why are you doing this?’ She couldn’t understand why I would leave. She wasn’t mean. She wasn’t disrespectful. ‘I need to do this. I appreciate everything you’ve done for me. There’s no ill will.’ She was the same way with me. So was Hunter. They were extremely awesome to me; but, like an adult to an adult she was just wondering why and I was, ‘I just need a break.’ Bottom line, I think that, I know that when you leave there on your own terms and you don’t get future endeavored and I think this might prove point for those of us in the industry that feels these feelings, you’re kind of like dead to them for the most part.”
He also added that he doesn’t think WWE officials like the fact that he critiques their product on his show.
“I have critiqued them more than once and they don’t like that. They don’t mind if a reporter or journalist in the industry does it….but if it’s somebody that was there for a decade, on the airplane, breaking bread with them and all that sh*t, I’m strongly assuming they don’t like it.”
Do you think WWE should have brought Taz back for SmackDown 1000? Sound off in the comments below.