Zicky Dice Says ‘Empty Promises’ And Other Issues Led To NWA Departure, Addresses Backstage Heat With Nick Aldis
Zicky Dice says broken and unkept promises, and other backstage issues led to his departure from the National Wrestling Alliance.
Dice spoke with Fightful after he officially became a free agent on January 1, and finally broke his silence about why he let his contract run out and his issues with the NWA. Zicky says he was forever grateful for the opportunities Billy Corgan and the NWA gave him, but he always knew this was just a “lily pad” for him to move him to a bigger stage. Things started to go sour when he turned down a contract offer of $250 a month, and he was then told a few more “empty promises” that ultimately skewed the way he looked at the promotion.
“I was offered $250 a month as Television Champion. I turned that contract down. No disrespect, no offense, but I’m good, I don’t need to sell ‘Outlandish’ Zicky Dice for $250 a month. Turned that down, got a call from Billy Corgan, and we raised it up a little bit more during the pandemic. You know, ‘Zicky, if you move to Atlanta, we’ll pay you more. Zicky, if people turn down their contracts, we’ll pay you more. Zicky, if you overdeliver, we’ll pay you more.’ These are all things that I heard,” Dice explained. “And what did I do? I got my own camera crew, I got a guy that can write jingles, that’s released platinum records, I’ve been taking over entertainment/ So what did I do? I over-delivered every single time. Go back and look at those “Carnyland” episodes, look at the quality of the content that I sent in. Look at how clear, the high resolution, the editing, that was all done here. So I over-delivered. I made sure because I wanted to take the brand to the next level. And circle around, I started seeing a lot of empty promises and a lot of true colors coming out that started changing the way that I looked at the brand and my job.”
Zicky then addressed the now-infamous email about talent being asked to speak up if they were unhappy or didn’t believe in the NWA vision, sent shortly after former VP Dave Lagana was accused of sexual assault during the Speaking Out movement. Zicky says he was willing to keep overdelivering and work on AEW TV (like Thunder Rosa had done) but says he never got any feedback and says his asking for a release was definitely taken personally.
“I signed on the dotted line, and I continued to overdeliver and try and make the best out of what I was given. So after asking for my release, when I was told that it wouldn’t be taken personal, it was taken personal. And I saw a little bit of backlash from that. I had reached out to Mr. Corgan twice about trying to get on the phone together, and I never heard back from him. And now, that was six, seven months ago. So here we are. Free agent, ready to take over professional wrestling and entertainment as a whole.”
Dice further explained that he did later speak with Corgan about leaving the promotion, and addressed how he came to that conclusion.
“There was a few back and forths about, he wanted to know why, he wouldn’t take it personal. I let him know I was uncomfortable with some of the stuff that had happened at NWA, which caused someone to, a higher-up, leave the company, and then that kind of made me feel a little uncomfortable and uneasy. And then there was some other just bull—- locker room politics, and I’m an easygoing guy. I have very few enemies, and if they don’t like me, it’s probably because I’m doing something right.”
Zicky says he saw the reports this summer about him having huge heat backstage, and while he only alluded to it at first, he specifically confirmed it was related to issues with NWA Worlds Heavyweight Champion Nick Aldis. He says he didn’t have heat with anyone but Aldis, and explained how Nick asked to speak with him (before his title win over Ricky Starks aired), and it continued from there.
“And I found that right off bat from one of the big fish in the company. I knew going in, like, I made an impact in NWA right off the bat, you can go back and watch the very first episode of Power. I come out, there’s murmurs. I remember hearing people, ‘Who is this?’ And by the end, I had everyone booing me by the end of the match. I was able to take control of the masses, and some people didn’t like that. Some people thought that I came into NWA like I owned the place or that I was some big shot. No, I just came and do what I do best, and that’s entertain and grab the attention, steal the attention from the room. So that led to, you know, I didn’t hear back from Billy [Corgan] but then I see some of these big dirt sheets with these fabricated stories about how ‘Outlandish’ Zicky Dice had major locker room heat backstage. And it seems like somebody was trying to sabotage my career. I didn’t have heat with anybody except for one person I butted heads with and that was that. The champ, baby. The champ. Yeah.
“He had reached out a few days before the championship match aired, and he said, ‘Hey are you free to talk?’ And I said, ‘Yes, here’s my phone number.’ He didn’t call after 45 minutes of myself pinning Ricky Starks and winning the championship. I received a novel in my direct messages about him going off on me, and how I’m an effing embarrassment because I swiveled my hips too long before doing the finish and I’m too jokey and blah blah blah. So I said, ‘Oh, I’m so sorry, sir, is there anything I can do to help you? Is there, let me know next time.’ I turned my tail, I’ll be honest with you. And then I find out he texted his buddies saying, ‘Oh, I just let Zicky Dice have it.’ So I was like alright, we’re playing a game now. So that was that. Let that go, and then that led into a little cameo debacle, and that led to us butting heads again.”
Zicky also highlighted the fact that he had many people from the NWA roster on his Twitch stream before and after those reports came out, so it should be clear that he didn’t have heat with them. Zicky later explained that he got a long, long NDA basically saying he couldn’t talk about NWA or the friends and family of the NWA or he’d be sued, but refused to sign it and let his contract run out. He says he kept quiet for the time being, but now that he’s a free agent is looking to spread his wings and could see AEW as a destination.
“I did business, I didn’t complain about it and I made the best out of what I was given. And now I’m ready for the bigger stage, whatever that is. The phone lines are open.”
If you use any portion of this transcript, please credit Colin Tessier of WrestleZone.com with a h/t to Fightful for the original video interview.