Ali Speaks On His Transition From Police Officer To WWE Superstar

Posted By Caroline Walsh on 05/13/19

SmackDown Live superstar Ali sat down with The Independent to discuss his double life as a police officer and independent wrestler in the years leading up to being officially signed by WWE.

The struggles in the early days: “Wrestling was a lifelong dream. I started when I was 16 years old and it has been a 17-year journey to get where I’m at now. I’d always had the dream that when I closed my eyes, I could see myself vividly, wrestling on pay per views and doing media calls like this.”

“But when I opened my eyes, I didn’t see it and reality would set in – money, a house, a sick family member; real life stuff would get in the way. I would always chase this dream on the side and, eventually, I thought this dream wasn’t going to happen and it was kind of one foot in, and one foot out with it.”

Why he became a police officer: “I was at the stage where I felt like law enforcement would be meaningful work – you could actually do something and change somebody’s life. That was it – I went into it with the intention of making it my career and retiring at whatever [age] and having a full law enforcement career.”

The hectic schedule of being both an officer and an independent wrestler: “While I was a police officer, I’d do independent wrestling shows on the side. That was a crazy schedule.”

“It wasn’t until the official offer came from WWE that I resigned. I was working as a cop the entire time I was doing the Cruiserweight Classic and the NXT stuff, and, on the side, I was doing independent wrestling shows!”

“I’d do a show at 9pm, jump in my car and race to the police station to make it for 11pm for when my shift started. I always showed up for the roll call with a minute to spare and I’d be sweaty and have a black eye, and guys were like ‘what is wrong with this kid?!'”