For the first time since 2019, Big Caz will return to Northeast Wrestling (NEW) and International Wrestling Cartel (IWC) as the brands combine for Friday night’s Superstar Showdown live show at Belle Vernon’s Rostraver Ice Garden.
“I really enjoy working the independents. I get the opportunity to meet with the fans which has been really cool. Coming back to NEW and IWC, I worked many shows for Michael Lombardi and Northeast Wrestling in 2019. I am really excited to come back and obviously crowds are back at shows so that makes me more excited.”
Big Caz is most known for his time in WWE as Big Cass though he also has wrestled as CaZXL among other names. He currently wrestles as W. Morrissey in IMPACT Wrestling.
It has not been an easy road for the 6-foot-10 superstar, who has overcome battles with both addiction and depression, but a publicly-shared journey has been successful.
Now there is no more hiding the truth and when fans have met him, or send him messages on social media they share their stories, even ask for answers.
“I have been meeting fans at shows that are also suffering from addiction or have mental health problems still come up to me and it’s really good to talk to them face-to-face,” he said. “The reception has been very good. Lord knows I’ve made plenty of mistakes, but everyone has been welcoming me back with open arms which has been nice. It’s been a good process so far.”
Caz readily admits that the pandemic could have hurt him had he not approached recovery seriously before it occurred.
Despite his success, he also acknowledged others who have struggled and relapsed since the pandemic. Two challenges the pandemic brought for those struggling were the financial burden and having to isolate. The isolation is something which created ample free time.
“I’m very glad that I took my recovery seriously before the pandemic hit because the lessons I learned helped me through the pandemic,” said Caz. “There are plenty of times when temptation is there and you have to use the tools you’ve been given to reach out and seek help in those moments.”
Caz worked physically during the pandemic, but also was able refresh mentally, getting outside of the wrestling bubble. This is something he credits as assisting him in seeing the big picture and viewing wrestling differently than he had in the past.
Now, Caz wrestles with IMPACT Wrestling on a date-to-date basis as W. Morrissey, his real name. Caz expressed a true thankfulness for Impact’s Executive Vice President Scott D’Amore believing in and taking a risk with signing him.
To date, both sides appear to be pleased with the arrangement with Morrissey potentially seeing himself at Impact “long term”.
The name change to W. Morrissey occurred 30 minutes before IMPACT’s Rebellion pay-per-view opened. The event marked Morrissey’s debut with the company.
While many wrestling fans know the catchphrases and his tag team work with Enzo Amore in WWE, he wanted the name to represent a real version of himself. Though he appreciated playing a part, he now just wants to be organic, authentic and honest.
“I was using Caz XL, but I really didn’t want to have any sort of similarities between what I was doing in the past,” he said. “Moving forward, I wanted a clean slate in Impact. I wanted to be a totally different person, a real person. I always felt that Kevin Nash and Scott Hall using their real names was really cool when they went to WCW. I was going to use my real name William Morrissey, but it’s a lot to say. We changed it because everyone agreed it was better visually and graphically.”
Caz will be facing Spencer Slade during Friday’s show and the next night in Niles, Ohio, will be facing Rowan who also previously wrestled for WWE.
As for the weekend is, Caz plans on picking up two wins. Assessing Slade, Caz expressed more knowledge about his manager, Justin LaBar. LaBar has promoted the match, while expressing confidence in Slade earning a victory.
“It’s LaBar,” said Caz. “He loves to run his mouth, write articles on the dirtsheets and bury people and give his opinion, which means nothing because his opinion is garbage. I’d really like to shut him up because he talks a lot but he doesn’t back it up. It’s easy to talk crap on the internet and sit behind a screen or a phone. When you see them face-to-face, it’s a different story and I think he’s going to turn into a different man when he sees me face to face.”
Doors open for the joint show at 6 p.m. with a meet-and-greet featuring Morrissey, nZO, Carlito, Lex Luger, Sgt. Slaughter and Juice Robinson. Both IWC and NEW talent also will be at the meet and greet.
The first match is scheduled for 8 p.m. and tickets, which start at $25, can be purchased at this link, Tickets for IWC and Northeast Wrestling Present SUPERSTAR SHOWDOWN in Belle Vernon from ShowClix.
Both promotions will see their champions face off against the other to determine which reigns supreme.
“I can’t wait to see all of (the fans), talk to them and I think that’s an important part of working with NEW,” Caz said. “You have that chance to meet the fans beforehand and be a real person with them. It starts there and then we’re going to put on a show, NEW is always stacked from top to bottom. They always have the biggest names on the independents and the biggest matches, so they always put on a hell of a show.”
Photo credit: Northeast Wrestling