Heath Slater

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This article is about the professional wrestler. For the American football player, see Heath Miller.
Heath Slater
Heath Slater WrestleMania 32 Axxess.jpg
Slater in March 2016
Birth name Heath Miller III
Born (1983-07-15) July 15, 1983 (age 33)
Pineville, West Virginia,
United States
Residence Tampa, Florida,
United States
Spouse(s) Stephanie Miller
Children 2
Professional wrestling career
Ring name(s) Heath Miller[1]
Heath Slater
Heath Wallace Miller Esq.[1]
Sebastian Slater[1]
Billed height 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)[2]
Billed weight 216 lb (98 kg)[2]
Billed from Pineville, West Virginia[2]
Trained by Curtis Hughes[1]
Debut August 2004[3]

Heath Miller III (born July 15, 1983)[1] is an American professional wrestler and actor. He is signed to WWE, where he performs under the ring name Heath Slater. Miller has been employed by the WWE since 2006.

Early life

Miller was born in Pineville, West Virginia.[1] He is an only child and was raised by his mother, stepfather, and grandparents.

Professional wrestling career

World Wrestling Alliance (2004–2006)

Miller was initially trained at WWA4 Wrestling School and began to wrestle in WWA4 events, and also in numerous Georgia-based wrestling federations.

World Wrestling Entertainment/WWE

Deep South Wrestling (2006–2007)

In December 2006, Miller signed a developmental contract with World Wrestling Entertainment, and was assigned to Deep South Wrestling (DSW), a WWE developmental territory.

Florida Championship Wrestling (2007–2010)

Miller as the FCW Florida Heavyweight Champion in 2009.

When the WWE ended its relationship with DSW in the spring of 2007, Miller was one of over twenty developmental wrestlers to be sent for further training at the new Florida Championship Wrestling (FCW) territory. At a June 2007 FCW show, Miller appeared as the manager of fellow developmental talent Shawn McGrath under the name Heath Wallace Miller Esq. However, Miller reverted to using his real name and resumed his singles career while continuing to manage McGrath.

In 2007, Miller was given a talk show called The Happy Hour during some FCW shows.[4] During one segment, Billy Kidman was the guest; Miller claimed to idolize Kidman but then commented that Kidman's career was declining. This created a feud and led to a series of matches between the two.[4] In January 2008, Miller started defending the FCW Southern Heavyweight Championship on behalf of the champion Ted DiBiase, Jr., who was injured.[5] DiBiase soon forfeited the belt and Miller was declared the champion.[6]

Miller and his tag team partner Steve Lewington lost to John Morrison and The Miz for the WWE Tag Team Championship on February 15, 2008 at an FCW show. Miller and Lewington then advanced to the finals of a tournament for the inaugural Florida Tag Team Championship in February 2008. Miller and Lewington defeated Brandon Groom and Greg Jackson and The Thoroughbreds (Johnny Curtis and Kevin Kiley) to reach the finals.[7][8] On February 23, 2008, Miller and Lewington lost to The Puerto Rican Nightmares (Eddie Colón and Eric Perez) in the finals.[5] On September 11, teaming with Joe Hennig, he won the FCW Florida Tag Team Championship.[9] As champion, he changed his ring name to Sebastian Slater. On October 30, 2008, Slater and Hennig lost the title to The New Hart Foundation (Harry Smith and TJ Wilson) in Tampa, Florida.[9] He later returned from injury and defeated Justin Angel. On August 13, 2009, at the 50th FCW TV taping, Miller defeated Tyler Reks to become FCW Heavyweight Champion.[9][10] Slater lost the FCW Heavyweight Championship to Justin Gabriel in a two out of three falls match at the September 24, 2009 TV taping.[9][11]

The Nexus and The Corre (2010–2011)

Main articles: The Nexus and The Corre

On February 16, 2010, Miller, now using the ring name Heath Slater, was announced as one of eight FCW wrestlers to compete on the first season of the new WWE NXT show, with Christian as his storyline mentor. On the inaugural episode of NXT, Slater won his debut match as he and Christian defeated Carlito and Michael Tarver in a tag team match. Two weeks later, Slater defeated Carlito, becoming the first NXT rookie to beat a WWE pro in a singles match. On the March 30 episode of NXT he came fourth out of eight rookies in the first Pros' Poll. On the April 6 episode, Slater won a keg-carrying contest against all other rookies. This resulted in him being in the main event that night, a match against Kane, which he lost. In an upset victory on April 20, Slater defeated Chris Jericho in the main event of NXT. However, Slater remained at fourth in the second Pros Poll, revealed on May 11. He was eliminated from NXT on May 25, coming in last in the Pros' Poll.

Slater (second from right) with the rest of The Nexus at SummerSlam.

On the June 7 episode of Raw, Slater and the other season one NXT rookies turned heel by interfering in the main event match between John Cena and CM Punk, attacking both competitors, Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler, and Justin Roberts before dismantling the ring area and surrounding equipment.[12] On the June 14 episode of Raw, the rookies (sans Daniel Bryan, who had been released from his contract) attacked General Manager Bret Hart, when he refused to give them contracts.[13] At the Fatal 4-Way pay-per-view, the seven rookies interfered in the WWE Championship match, and as a result costing Cena the championship to Sheamus. The following week on Raw, Vince McMahon fired Hart and announced the hiring of the Anonymous General Manager, who had signed the seven season one NXT rookies to contracts.[14] The following week, the group was named The Nexus.[15] On the July 12 episode of Raw, The Nexus competed in their first match together, without Darren Young, a six–on–one handicap match against John Cena, which they won when Gabriel pinned Cena.[16] The Nexus continued to feud with Cena and the Raw roster, resulting in a seven-on-seven elimination tag team match at SummerSlam. During the match Slater eliminated both Chris Jericho and Edge. Afterwards Slater was eliminated from the match by Daniel Bryan, ultimately Cena's team won when Cena eliminated Gabriel and then Barrett to win the match.[17]

In October 2010, Cena was forced to join The Nexus as a result of losing to Barrett at Hell in a Cell and at Bragging Rights, Cena and Otunga won the WWE Tag Team Championship.[18][19] On the October 25 episode of Raw, Barrett made a tag team match, with Justin Gabriel and Slater facing Otunga and Cena for the championship. Gabriel and Slater won when Barrett ordered Otunga to allow Slater to pin him, becoming the new Tag Team Champions.[20][21] Gabriel and Slater held the championship for nearly two months, before losing it to Santino Marella and Vladimir Kozlov in a four-way elimination match also involving The Usos and Mark Henry and Yoshi Tatsu on the December 6 Raw.[22] Gabriel and Slater received a rematch for the championship at the TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs pay-per-view on December 19, but lost by disqualification when Nexus member Michael McGillicutty interfered.[23] On the January 10, 2011 edition of Raw, Gabriel and Slater refused to take part in new Nexus leader CM Punk's initiation and walked away from the group.[24]

Slater at the 2010 Tribute to the Troops event.

The following day, at the January 11 taping of SmackDown, Gabriel and Slater helped their former leader Wade Barrett and Ezekiel Jackson attack Big Show.[25][26] The following week, Gabriel, Slater, Barrett, and Jackson announced they had formed the Corre, and later that night Gabriel defeated World Heavyweight Champion Edge in a non-title match, following interference from the other members of The Corre.[27][28] After winning a non-title match against the champions Kozlov and Marella on the February 4 episode of SmackDown, Gabriel and Slater received a match for the WWE Tag Team Championship two weeks later, but lost via disqualification when the other members of The Corre interfered.[29][30] They received a rematch at the Elimination Chamber pay-per-view on February 20 and defeated Marella and Kozlov to win the WWE Tag Team Championship for the second time.[31][32] The following night on Raw, Gabriel and Slater lost the championship to John Cena and The Miz, but won the championship back minutes later after Barrett invoked The Corre's rematch clause and The Miz quickly turned on Cena.[33][34] The Corre began a feud with The Big Show and at WrestleMania XXVII, the team of The Big Show, Kane, Santino Marella and Kofi Kingston defeated The Corre.[35] At the April 19 taping of SmackDown, the duo of Gabriel and Slater lost the Tag Team Championship to the team of Kane and The Big Show. In a backstage segment following the match, Gabriel was attacked by Slater, who thought Gabriel blamed him for their loss. On the May 6, 2011 edition of SmackDown, Gabriel, Barrett and Slater attacked Jackson, removing him from the group. Barrett walked out on Gabriel and Slater in a 6-man tag team match against Jackson and The Usos on the June 10, 2011 edition of SmackDown, leading to Gabriel and Slater telling Barrett that The Corre was over.[36][37] Slater and Gabriel then started a feud with The Usos. On the June 17, 2011 edition of SmackDown, Gabriel and Slater were defeated by The Usos, later defeating them in a rematch on the June 24, 2011 edition. The next day he together with Gabriel were announced for the Smackdown Money in the Bank match in Chicago, Illinois. They were again defeated by The Usos on the July 8, 2011 edition of SmackDown, having a visible disagreement and argument in the ring following the match. On the July 15, 2011 edition of SmackDown, Slater started a feud with Gabriel when he verbally berated him saying that Gabriel was holding him down. That same night, Slater lost to Gabriel after receiving a 450° splash.[38] At Money in the Bank on July 17, he and Gabriel participated in the SmackDown Money in the Bank ladder match, which was won by Daniel Bryan. On October 17, WWE suspended Heath Slater due to a Wellness Violation for 30 days.[39]

Feud with the Legends (2012)

WWE's returning veterans celebrate over a vanquished Slater on Raw 1000.

On the June 11, 2012 edition of Raw, Slater began appearing in segments involving WWE veterans returning to Raw as a build-up to Raw's 1000th episode on July 23. 2012. In the segments, Slater would enter the ring and issue challenges to "the so-called legends" or "any former WWE champion," which resulted in him losing a series of squash matches, with the first two losses to Vader and Sycho Sid. He was further humiliated in a comedic segment featuring Roddy Piper, Wendi Richter and Cyndi Lauper. He did manage to defeat Doink the Clown on the July 2, 2012 edition of Raw, however, following the match, Diamond Dallas Page came to the ring and performed the Diamond Cutter on Slater. On the July 9, 2012 edition of Raw, after losing to Sin Cara, Slater berated the audience and issued a challenge "to any former champion" and guaranteed he would defeat him; Bob Backlund accepted the challenge. After Backlund played up to the crowd for a few moments, Slater hit him with a cheap shot. Backlund then applied the crossface chickenwing submission hold and kept it locked in long after Slater had tapped out. In following matches Scotty 2 Hotty, Rikishi and Road Warrior Animal all defeated Slater in further squash matches.

On July 23, 2012, during the 1000th episode of Raw, he demanded a "no disqualifications, no countout" match and guaranteed his own victory. Lita responded to the challenge, however before the match could begin, Lita announced she had "hired herself a little protection," after which APA emerged. Slater attempted to leave; however, he was forced back to the ring by all of the legends who had humiliated Slater in the preceding weeks on Raw. Lita performed a twist of fate on Slater, followed by a clothesline from hell by John Bradshaw Layfield. Lita then pinned Slater after performing a moonsault. As Slater lay prone in the ring, the legends celebrated while Farooq taunted him with his catchphrase "Damn!"

3MB (2012–2014)

3MB in 2013.

On the September 21, 2012 edition of SmackDown, Drew McIntyre and Jinder Mahal interfered in Slater's match against Brodus Clay by attacking Clay.[40] The trio later settled for the name of the Three Man Band, or 3MB for short.[41] Slater would then go on to become the brash and confident leader of the 3MB. From October 2012, 3MB racked up many wins against Team Co-Bro (Santino Marella and Zack Ryder) and the Usos, all of them due to illegal interference. At the TLC pay per view, 3MB's winning streak came to an end at the hands of The Miz, Alberto Del Rio and the Brooklyn Brawler. The next night at the Slammy Awards show, 3MB lost again to Miz, Del Rio, and Tommy Dreamer. Drew McIntyre and Jinder Mahal often interfere in Slater's matches at Slater's behest, defending the leader of the trio.[42][43][44] On the 20th Anniversary of Raw on January 14, 2013, 3MB won an Over the Top Challenge against Sheamus. Slater and McIntyre represented 3MB in the NXT Tag Team Championship tournament to crown the inaugural champions, but were defeated in the first round by Adrian Neville and Oliver Grey on the January 23 NXT.[45] He participated in the Royal Rumble coming from number 10 but was eliminated by John Cena. On the April 12 edition of SmackDown Slater, along with the rest of 3MB, attempted to ambush Triple H as he was addressing Brock Lesnar, however The Shield then came out and attacked them. On the April 15 Raw, 3MB called out The Shield but instead it was Brock Lesnar who came out and attacked the three of them, delivering the F-5 on Slater twice on the barricade. On the April 29 episode of Raw, 3MB attacked The Shield, but The Shield would quickly turned the tables on them. Team Hell No came to the ring, seemingly to aid 3MB, but The Shield escaped and Team Hell No attacked 3MB instead. Over the next couple of months the group continued being used as partimers but mostly as jobbers, while doing that on the main brand TV shows they would feud with Zack Ryder on Superstars.

3MB in 2014.

On the November 11, 2013 edition of Raw, while on tour in the UK, 3MB changed their name to The Union Jacks, but were defeated by Santino Marella and Los Matadores. On the November 13, 2013 edition of WWE Main Event, Slater and McIntyre would defeat The Prime Time Players. On the November 15, 2013 edition of SmackDown, The Union Jacks were defeated by R-Truth and The Prime Time Players. On the November 18, 2013 country music edition of Raw, 3MB competed as The Rhinestone Cowboys. McIntyre and Mahal lost to R-Truth and the debuting Xavier Woods in Nashville, Tennessee. Similarly, this trend of name changes continued to amount the group losses as they also lost to The Prime Time Players on SmackDown, as The Fabulous 3Birds, which was a play on legendary tag team, The Fabulous Freebirds. On the November 29, 2013 edition of Smackdown, they were billed as The Plymouth Rockers, a play on The Rockers tag team, even coming out to the Rockers' theme music and faced Los Matadores, along with their mascot, El Torito in a losing effort. Shortly after that match, Slater took time off from WWE to deal with personal issues. He returned on the January 6, 2014 edition of Raw, which saw 3MB defeated by Rikishi and Too Cool. On April 4, 2014, Slater broke his losing streak, picking up the win against Kofi Kingston on WWE Superstars. At WrestleMania XXX, all three members entered the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal and eliminated both The Great Khali and Xavier Woods as a unit, before all three were eliminated by Mark Henry. After WrestleMania, 3MB entered a feud with Los Matadores, which saw Hornswoggle ally himself with the trio so as to feud with El Torito. 3MB won their first match since December 2012 after Slater and McIntyre beat Los Matadores on the April 28, 2014 edition of Raw. On June 12, 2014, both Mahal and McIntyre were released from their WWE contracts, thus disbanding 3MB.[46]

Slater Gator (2014–2015)

Slater Gator in September 2014.

On the June 16, 2014 edition of Raw, Slater showed signs of a face turn as he stood up to Rusev and Lana by responding to their anti-American promos. However, he was quickly defeated by Rusev, who applied the Accolade on Slater to get the win. On the June 26, 2014 edition of Superstars, Slater faced Adam Rose in a losing effort. On the July 11, 2014 edition of SmackDown, Slater teamed up with Titus O'Neil to face The Usos in a match which Usos won. At Battleground, Slater competed in a battle royal for the vacant Intercontinental Championship; Slater did not win the match, but managed to eliminate Cesaro in upset fashion and received the biggest ovation from the crowd in his career, but was then quickly eliminated by Sheamus. On the July 21, 2014 edition of Raw, Slater confronted Flo Rida about their previous confrontation. This resulted in Flo Rida once again pushing Slater to the ground. Slater then began to regularly team up with Titus O'Neil. On the July 29, 2014 edition of Main Event, Slater and O'Neil became known as "Slater Gator" and picked up their first win over Tyson Kidd and Zack Ryder.

On the August 4, 2014 edition of Raw, thanks to a distraction from Dean Ambrose, Slater scored an upset victory over Seth Rollins and he followed it up a week later with a count-out victory over Dolph Ziggler thanks to yet another distraction, this time from The Miz. During this period, Slater Gator also scored victories on Main Event over Los Matadores and Goldust and Stardust. Slater's brief winning streak was ended when Slater Gator were defeated by Los Matadores on the August 25, 2014 edition of Raw. Slater Gator then began a feud with Adam Rose and his bunny, who has attacked Slater on many occasions. In his return to Raw on November 17, 2014, he returned in Uncle Sam attire and became the next victim against Rusev. Later at Survivor Series, Slater remained and Titus O'Neil lost to Adam Rose and The Bunny. In December 2014, a warrant for Slater's arrest was issued, rendering him inactive until all legal issues are resolved. The charges were dropped on January 15, 2015.[47] Slater returned to action in a dark match against Luke Harper on February 3, 2015. On the February 12, 2015 edition of SmackDown, Slater Gator competed in a tag team turmoil match, where they were quickly defeated by the team of Daniel Bryan and Roman Reigns.

The Social Outcasts (2015–2016)

On the February 16, 2015 edition of Raw, O'Neil made a face turn and reformed The Prime Time Players with Darren Young, effectively disbanding Slater Gator. Later that night, Slater stated on social media, "I'm going to start focusing on ME!!! I'm better on my own... It's about time I get what I deserve," cementing their breakup.[48] At WrestleMania 31, Slater competed in the 30-man Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal, which was won by Big Show. Slater returned to the scenes on the April 20, 2015 edition of Raw when he was at catering, only to receive an RKO through the table by Randy Orton. On the May 28, 2015 edition of Superstars, Slater picked up a victory against Adam Rose. Slater would appear mostly on Superstars and Main Event losing to the likes of Fandango, Neville, R-Truth, and Zack Ryder. Slater started appearing on Raw, trying to answer John Cena's United States Championship Open Challenge, but was denied each week.

It had been announced on Michael Cole's Weekly WWE Interview that Heath Slater came eighth in the Superstar Of The Year Slammy Award. On December 28, 2015 edition of Raw, Slater appeared on Miz TV, but he was knocked out by the Big Show.

The Social Outcasts in April 2016

On the January 4, 2016 Raw, Slater debuted a new stable of himself, Curtis Axel, Adam Rose and Bo Dallas calling themselves "social outcasts". Slater went on to defeat Dolph Ziggler after interference from his stablemates.[49] On the January 11 episode of Raw, now billed as The Social Outcasts, the group would face The Wyatt Family to a no contest when Ryback got involved.[50] On the January 14 episode of SmackDown, the four defeated the team of Goldust, Damien Sandow, Jack Swagger and Zack Ryder in an eight man tag match. On the February 15 episode of Raw, Slater defeated Zack Ryder with the help of The Social Outcasts. On April 3, Slater competed in the 3rd annual André the Giant Memorial Battle Royal at WrestleMania 32 but was eliminated. In May, The Social Outcasts began filming The Marine 5: Battleground, taking them out of action.[51]

The Social Outcasts returned on the June 27 episode of Raw, confronting Enzo Amore and Big Cass.[52] The following week on Raw, The Social Outcasts faced Enzo Amore and Big Cass in a losing effort.[53]

Singles competition (2016–present)

While his fellow Social Outcast members got drafted by the end of the 2016 WWE Draft, Slater was the only active superstar not selected by either show.[54] Slater appeared on the July 26 episode of SmackDown Live, cutting a highly acclaimed worked shoot promo addressing the issue,[55][56] only to receive a Gore from a returning Rhyno shortly after.[57]


Other media

Miller was one of the main cast members of The JBL and Renee Show from 2013 to 2015 on WWE.com, where he played "Big" Clem Layfield, a storyline nephew of John "Bradshaw" Layfield. He consistently appears on Xavier Woods' YouTube channel UpUpDownDown, where he plays video games alongside Woods and other WWE superstars. Miller is currently the host of WWE Game Night on WWE.com and WWE's YouTube channel.

Miller, as Heath Slater, is a playable character in the video games WWE '12, WWE '13, WWE 2K14, and WWE 2K16.

Filmography

Year Title Role
2017 The Marine 5: Battleground TBA

Web shows

Year Title Role
2013–2015 The JBL and Renee Show Himself / "Big" Clem Layfield
2016–present WWE Game Night Himself

Personal life

Miller is married and has two children.[58] He resides in Tampa, Florida.[59]

In wrestling

Championships and accomplishments

References

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