Mustafa Ali has made great strides while on the main roster by being placed on WWE SmackDown Live. He was introduced when WWE Champion Daniel Bryan issued an open challenge which was accepted by Ali, in late 2018. This is after having a run on the 205 Live brand.
The SmackDown star made an appearance on Edge & Christian’s Pod of Awesomeness where he talked about a wide range of topics including the time where he confronted Triple H over not being signed by the company. This was at a time when he served as an alternate for the Cruiserweight Classic.
Once the tournament finished, Ali was used for NXT events but wasn’t under contract to the company.
“I went up to Triple H after [an NXT taping] and said, ‘You’ve seen me five or six times now. You know when you know.’ All my other friends were getting contract offers, so I was basically fishing to see where his mind was. I asked, ‘Do you see me here?’ He gave the response of like, ‘There are so many dogs and so many bones, and I can only give out so many bones. Right now is just not the time.’ I thought, ‘Okay, cool.’ I thought he was telling me ‘buzz off, kid.’
A week later, I got a call, and they offered me a deal,” said Ali. “I felt like I knew what I was doing, but I didn’t have any validation. I didn’t have a guy that would sign off on me. I didn’t do the international tour or have that stamp of approval from anybody. It was frustration, honestly. It wasn’t like [I went up and said] ‘I’m gonna take this.’ I was frustrated. I wanted to know if it was going to happen. And that’s what fueled it.”
You can listen to the entire interview by clicking on the player below:
H/T to Fightful for the transcription