WrestlingINC.com: You did something that not many people do, when you turned down the first contract that WWE offered you in 2004.
Smith: That is correct.
WrestlingINC.com: Was that a hard decision to make?
Smith: Nope [laughs]. It was just one of those deals. I think I was like 18 at the time, I was just out of high school. I mean, that was just kind of initially the plan, to graduate high school and get an education and get picked up [by WWE]. They [WWE] wanted to do that, but I figured I'm 18 and I can continue to train with Tokyo Joe and try to go to New Japan and try to wrestle and get a lot more experience before going to WWE, rather than just straight going there with no other prior experience. I mean, not that I had no other prior wrestling experience, I was wrestling up in Calgary and doing some other independent shows, but what I really wanted to do was go full time and wrestle in Japan and I did it. And you know being 18, I didn't want to sign a developmental contract and move all alone all the way to Louisville, Kentucky or something like that and kind of be stuck there, you know what I mean? So that's why I was kind of like yeah… no.
They kept trying to hound me for like the next year or two, and obviously everybody wants to go in the WWE or aspired to if you are in the wrestling business, but I just didn't want to at that time so I toured around, did some tours with New Japan... I did a few tours with them, I got to go wrestle over in England, I got to wrestle in Germany and a few other places. And one night when I.. I think I was 20 and New Japan had been going through a big restructuring of their whole promotion with firing long time employees and hiring new ones and just changing everything around. And Tokyo Joe, who had sent me over there, unfortunately was one of the ones who was let go and so that was it for me as far as me and Japan. And then we kind of sniffed around at some other offices. But then WWE was sort of knocking down my door, so I decided in 2006 to sign with them.
WrestlingINC.com: When you finally did debut with them, you used the name DH Smith. Was that your idea to use that name or was that something the office came up with?
Smith: Nope, that wasn't my idea [alughs]. I'm glad it wasn't my idea either. To be perfectly honest, I was never high on the DH Smith name. I liked David Hart Smith better, but I thought that David Hart Smith just sounded to awkward, I don't know. I always just thought, "what's wrong with Harry Smith, or even just Davey Smith or something like that?" I'd take David Hart over DH, but I didn't like DH. Whatever, Vince McMahon didn't see Harry as like a fighting name, which... okay, well whatever. Is Cody a fighting name, or is Randy a fighting name? I don't know… what is a fighting name? A Mike or a Joe? So, it wasn't my idea, I didn't like the DH name... whatever.
WrestlingINC.com: For a long time after you debuted there was talk about you joining Legacy. Randy Orton would talk about it and we would hear from guys backstage that it was like a done deal. Was that something you had heard too?
Smith: Yeah, I was kind of told about it. There was some rumors going around that I like demanded to be in Legacy, and was like pushing for it or something, which wasn't necessarily true. I just heard about it, and you know with the way WWE goes, it's like you don't believe anything until you see it. So I was like, if we are going to be in Legacy then great, and if it wasn't going to happen I was like, okay. I wasn't exactly betting on it to happen. In the pro wrestling business in general you can't believe anything until you see it or until it actually happens, and not only until it actually happens, but until it airs on TV because something they could do for SmackDown, which is filmed on Tuesdays, and then they could have an idea for something.. It's happened before where they have an idea that they filmed on Tuesday and then on Wednesday they are like, "aah, we're going to hold off on this," and then they cancel it. So until it actually airs on TV and happens, you don't know if it's going to happen.
John Cena And Stephanie McMahon On What To Expect With Brand Extension, Slowing Down Storylines
Former WWE Writer On Which Stars He Gravitated To, His Favorite Angle, Mike Tyson Backstage At RAW
Trish Stratus On WWE Bringing Back Brand Extension And If It's A Good Idea, SmackDown Going Live
The Rock Makes Most Powerful People In Entertainment List, "Central Intelligence" Box Office Update
Xavier Woods Talks Loss To Kenny Omega At CEO 2016, Video Games Bringing Talent Together Backstage
Hernandez And Brent McKenzie Feud Continues Online, More On Their Locker Room Fight
Sami Zayn On Why His Rivalry With Kevin Owens Has Advantages Over Other WWE Feuds, Shinsuke Nakamura
Crossfit Athlete Debuts In WWE NXT (Photo), Fans On John Cena Vs. AJ Styles, Sami Zayn Artwork
WWE's Original Plans For AJ Styles, Bullet Club And The Kliq Talk "Too Sweet" Gesture, Nash & Hall
CM Punk Talks WWE Being Too Scripted, Who Was The Best Wrestler At Working Safe, More
Update On A Possible Kurt Angle WWE Return
Kurt Angle Comments On WWE Reports
Another Possible WWE CWC Injury, HHH Says CWC Is WWE's Newest Brand, Wrestler Doesn't Make Weight
ROH Best In The World Recap: Lethal Vs. Briscoe II, Roderick Strong's Last PPV, WCW Star Shows Up
Backstage News On WWE NXT Superstars Getting Called Up, More On NXT And The WWE Draft
Nancy Benoit's Sister On How Chris Benoit's Personality Changed, What Caused Benoit To Snap