Mustafa Ali spoke with ESPN this week to promote his match against Cedric Alexander in the finals of the WWE Cruiserweight Championship at WrestleMania 34 this Sunday. Featured below are some of the highlights from the interview.
On balancing being a police officer in Chicago, taking care of his family and working as a part-time wrestler prior to coming to WWE: “Yeah, it sucked, man. There were days I’d wrestle at 9 o’clock, and afterward, I often didn’t shower and would just throw on sweatpants. I had my police gear in the car and would rush to get to the station by 10:30, clean myself off as best I could and be ready for my shift by 10:59.”
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On the reaction from the Chicago police force when Daniel Bryan mentioned the fact that Ali worked with them during a WWE Cruiserweight Classic broadcast: “When I eventually came back to roll call, everyone was staring and smirking at me. I said, ‘What’s going on?’ And they said, ‘How was your vacation?’ I told them it was a lot of fun, but they kept pressing. ‘Where did you say you went again? Who did you go with?’ She took a picture and sent it around to everyone, so yeah, they eventually found out.”
On being a babyface in WWE: “Just take a look at anything you do. Go to the movies, and you see a guy with a turban. He’s a terrorist, right? We’re getting better, but we have so much more to do. I’ve been told that to see someone like me on TV, someone [with a foreign name] who’s not the bad guy but rather an American who comes out with a smile and high-fiving the fans, is encouraging. It gives me hope.”
Check out the complete Mustafa Ali interview at ESPN.com.
- eWrestling.com: WrestleMania 34 News Coverage All Week Long