NWA star Harry Smith, AKA Davey Boy Smith Jr., has revealed that he was slated to debut with a new name and gimmick prior to his departure from WWE last November.
In a recent interview with Inside the Ropes, Smith disclosed his conversation with John Cone, WWE’s Senior Manager of Talent Relations, shortly after he returned to WWE last July for a dark match.
“John Cone said ‘the next time you are going to come to SmackDown it’s going to be your debut, you did really good [in your dark match], Vince really liked it.’ So I was like, ‘great, I’ll just wait,’ and then they asked me to do a dark match in Tampa and they were going to do some backstage vignettes with me and my father’s leather vest.
“They were going to show that for the documentary, and then luck be have it I ended up having COVID, really bad, so I was kind of out of commission for about three weeks or a month. Then I was kind of forgotten about, I came to TV one or two times… I was waiting to come back and then they called and Johnny [ Laurinaitis] said he wasn’t a fan of it [his release], he wasn’t happy with the list of names he was given but it wasn’t from him.”
Smith then revealed that WWE wanted to repackage him as “The Stampede Stud” and reintroduce him to fans for the first time since his original departure in 2011.
“I don’t know what they were waiting for, the only thing I was told was, I was going to be debuting on SmackDown and they were going to call me ‘The Stampede Stud.’ It just never happened, it wasn’t my fault. I showed up more than in shape. I saw Vince and he was like ‘oh you’re looking good kid.’
Following his dark match last July, Smith appeared for an interview on WWE’s YouTube channel that seemingly hinted at his comeback run. However, as Smith stated in the aforementioned interview, his untimely diagnosis of COVID-19 put a wrench in WWE’s plans of bringing him back with a new gimmick and name.
Harry Smith & Doug Williams, AKA Commonwealth Connection, will challenge La Rebelion for the NWA World Tag Team Titles at the NWA Alwayz Ready pay-per-view on Saturday, June 11.