Michael "Mikey" Nicholls (20 August, 1985) is an Australian professional wrestler, where is his best known for his time with WWE where he competed in their developmental territory NXT under the ring name Nick Miller. He has wrestled internationally in Australia, the United States, and also Japan. He is best known for his work in the Pro Wrestling Noah promotion, where, as part of The Mighty Don't Kneel, he is a former two-time GHC Tag Team Champion. Other promotions he has wrestled for include New Japan Pro Wrestling in Japan and Ohio Valley Wrestling, Pro Wrestling Guerrilla and Ring of Honor in the United States.
Professional wrestling career
Early career (2001–2011)
Nicholls started training in Perth at the Dynamite Factory, the wrestling school of Explosive Pro Wrestling. he moved to California and started working for promotions in the United States, such as Pro Wrestling Guerrilla, NWA Pro Wrestling, and World League Wrestling.
Nicholls has trained at the New Japan Pro Wrestling's L.A. Dojo, based in Los Angeles. He wrestled for NJPW in Tokyo in 2006. Also in 2006, Nicholls unsuccessfully challenged for the NWA British Commonwealth Championship.
In June 2007, after NWA split with TNA, Nicholls was involved in the Reclaiming the Glory tournament to crown a new NWA World Heavyweight Champion, but was defeated in the tournament by Fergal Devitt. In September 2007, Nicholls defeated champion Karl Anderson and Ryan Taylor in a 30-minute Iron Man match for the Empire Wrestling Federation American Championship. In 2009, Nicholls wrestled for Ring of Honor.
Pro Wrestling Noah (2011–2016)
On 23 February 2011 Haste made his debut in Pro Wrestling Noah as he had a try-out match against his teammate Shane Haste. A month after the try-out match both men started to work full-time with the Japanese promotion. Nicholls competed in both the 2012 and 2013 Global League tournaments as a singles competitor. On 7 July 2013 Haste and Nicholls, known together as The Mighty Don't Kneel (TMDK), won the GHC Tag Team Championship after they defeated Toru Yano and Takashi Iizuka. On 16 September, Nicholls unsuccessfully challenged Kenta for Noah's top title, the GHC Heavyweight Championship. At the end of 2013, the Tokyo Sports magazine named Nicholls and Haste the tag team of the year, making them the first foreign team to win the award since Stan Hansen and Vader in 1998. Nicholls and Haste lost the GHC Tag Team Championship to Maybach Taniguchi and Takeshi Morishima on 25 January 2014. They regained the title from Dangan Yankies (Masato Tanaka and Takashi Sugiura) on 10 January 2015. They lost the title to K.E.S. (Davey Boy Smith Jr., Lance Archer) on 11 February. On 28 December 2015, Noah announced that Nicholls and Haste would leave the promotion following their contracts expiring at the end of the year. On 11 February 2016, Noah announced that Nicholls and Haste would return to the promotion the following month to take part in a five-show-long farewell tour, entitled "Departure to the World". Their final Noah match took place on 10 March and saw them defeat Naomichi Marufuji and Mitsuhiro Kitamiya.
Other promotions (2012–2016)
After starting out in Noah, Nicholls returned to the United States and Ring of Honor in February 2012. He and Haste won a tournament at ROH Rise & Prove, defeating two other teams to qualify for a match against the Briscoe Brothers. At the ROH Showdown in the Sun iPPV in March 2012, the Briscoe Brothers defeated Nicholls and Haste in a Proving Ground match.
Also in February 2012, Nicholls and Haste wrestled television matches for Championship Wrestling From Hollywood. Also in March 2012, Nicholls and Haste started wrestling for Ohio Valley Wrestling, during their stint there, they were defeated in a title match for the OVW Southern Tag Team Championship by Rudy Switchblade and Jessie Godderz.
On 20 December 2014, Nicholls and Haste made their debut for New Japan Pro Wrestling, when they, along with Naomichi Marufuji, were revealed as Toru Yano's tag team partners at Wrestle Kingdom IX on 4 January 2015. At the event, the four defeated Suzuki-gun (Davey Boy Smith Jr., Lance Archer, Shelton X Benjamin and Takashi Iizuka) in an eight-man tag team match.
World Wrestling Entertainment / WWE
On 25 March 2016, WWE confirmed the signings of both Nicholls and his tag team partner, Shane Haste. They will begin training at the WWE Performance Center in April, while working for the promotion's developmental branch NXT. During the 19 May NXT tapings, Nicholls and Haste were renamed Nick Miller and Shane Thorne, respectively, while TMDK was renamed TM-61. They debuted on the 25 May episode, losing to Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa. Returning for the 15 June episode, TM-61 defeated Blake & Murphy. TM-61 went to return during the July 13 NXT Tapings, where they wrestled twice. Their first match aired on the 27 July episode, where they defeated Adrian Nails & Rob Ryzin. Their second match aired on the 3 August episode, where they lost to The Revival (Dash Wilder & Scott Dawson). During the 20 August NXT Tapings aired on the 24 August episode, TM-61 lost to The Authors Of Pain (Akam & Rezar). On the 7 September episode, TM-61 defeated the team of Ariya Daivari & Tony Nese. Beginning on the 12 October episode of NXT, the second annual Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Tournament was held. In the first rounds of the tournament, TM-61 advanced after eliminating Riddick Moss & Tino Sabbatelli. TM-61 received their first title opportunity during the 16 September house show, challenging The Revival (Dash Wilder & Scott Dawson) for the NXT Tag Team Championship. During the 13 October Tapings, TM-61 returned for the semifinals of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic, aired on NXT's 9 November episode, where they eliminated team SAnitY members Alexander Wolfe & Sawyer Fulton. Three days later on 19 November at NXT TakeOver: Toronto, TM-61 returned to compete in the finals of the Tag Team Classic, where they were defeated by The Authors Of Pain. They went on to finish the year with a match during the 13 December house show in Sydney, Australia, where they defeated Riddick Moss & Tino Sabbatelli.
TM-61's televised return was aired during the 4 January 2017 episode held in their home country of Australia, where they challenged once more for the Tag Team titles held by new champions team #DIY (Johnny Gargano & Tommaso Ciampa), but did not succeed in winning the titles, despite exchanging significant offense with the champions including high-risk maneuvers in their bid to become new Tag Team Champions. On the 18 January episode of NXT, TM-61 defeated The Revival. The team would not return to NXT television until the 18 October episode, although it was a dark match in which they defeated Steve Cutler & Wesley Blake. For much of the early months of 2017, Miller wrestled in singles matches during house shows, against opponents including Wesley Blake, Tian Bing, Lars Sullivan, Chad Lail, Marcel Barthel, Sawyer Fulton and The Velveteen Dream. During the final months of November and December, TM-61 wrestled in house shows against teams including Danny Burch & Oney Lorcan, teams SAnitY, Trent Seven & Tyler Bate (later named Moustache Mountain), Heavy Machinery (Otis Dozovic & Tucker Knight) and The Street Profits (Angelo Dawkins & Montez Ford). Returning in 2018, TM-61 challenged for the NXT Tag Team Championship during the 25 January house show against reigning champions and members of The Undisputed ERA Bobby Fish & Kyle O'Reilly. During the 7 March episode of NXT, TM-61 joined the opening rounds of the third annual Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Tournament, where they were eliminated by The Authors Of Pain. On 6 April during the second night of the 2018 WrestleMania Axxess weekend event, TM-61 competed in the NXT Tag Team Title Invitational, advancing in the opening rounds after eliminating Danny Burch & Oney Lorcan. The following night of the Axxess, TM-61 advanced in the semifinals after eliminating The Forgotten Sons (Steve Cutler & Wesley Blake). They returned to NXT programming on the 2 May episode, defeating The Street Profits. Throughout mid-2018 between house shows and televised programs, TM-61 met teams including the War Raiders, Heavy Machinery and Danny Burch & Oney Lorcan. By June 2018, Miller and Thorne's team were renamed The Mighty. Debuting under their name during the 14 June house show, they lost a tag match against the War Raiders. The Mighty made their televised debut on the 20 June episode, in a rematch lost against the War Raiders. The team returned for the 4 July episode winning their first victory under their new team name, in a two-on-one handicap match, defeating one-half of team Heavy Machinery Otis Dozovic. On the 13 July house show, Miller competed in a number one contendership triple threat match for the NXT Tag Team Championship, representing TM-61 against Montez Ford of the Street Profits and Wesley Blake of The Forgotten Sons. The match concluded with Miller as the winner, earning TM-61 the right to challenge reigning Tag Team Champions Kyle O'Reilly & Roderick Strong of The Undisputed ERA later on during the show. TM-61 however did not succeed in defeating the champions. They returned for the 1 August episode, losing a match against Heavy Machinery. On the 26 September episode, The Mighty returned to defeat the Street Profits. Beginning the next month with a match during the 6 October house show, TM-61 lost to the War Raiders.
On December 14, Miller requested and was granted his release from WWE. According to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Miller asked for his release in order to spend more time with his family in Australia.
Return to Independent circuit (2019-present)
Four months after his departure from WWE, Nicholls returned to the ring under his real name on 2 February 2019. He made his return to Melbourne City Wrestling at MCW Uprising, defeating JK Moody. He went on to wrestle in events for New Japan Pro Wrestling, including matches in the 2019 New Japan Cup Tournament. In addition to his continuous work in NJPW, Nicholls also wrestled in matches in his home country for the promotion Explosive Pro Wrestling.
- Finishing moves
- Signature moves
- Southern Cross Stretch (Modified figure-four leglock)
- Diving crossbody
- Corner Clothesline
- Lifting spinebuster
- Sliding lariat to seated opponent
- "Mean Machine"
Championships and accomplishments
- Explosive Professional Wrestling
- EPW Championship (2 time)
- EPW Tag Team Championship (2 times) - with Shane Haste
- EPW Wrestler of the Year (2004, 2005)
- EPW Best Wrestler of the first five Years (2006)
- EPW Match of the Year (2002) - vs. Jimmy Payne at Retribution
- EPW Telethon Rumble winner (2009)
- NWA Pro Wrestling
- NWA Australian National Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- NWA Australian National Championship Tournament winner (2007)
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated
- PWI ranked him #185 of the top 500 singles wrestlers in the PWI 500 in 2015
- Pro Wrestling Noah
- GHC Tag Team Championship (2 times) – with Shane Haste
- Global Tag League Fighting Spirit Award (2015) – with Shane Haste
- Tokyo Sports
- Best Tag Team Award (2013) – with Shane Haste
- Westside Pro Wrestling
- EPW Match of the Year (2012) - TMDK vs. Team Victoria at State of Origin
- International Impact Award (2009, 2011 co-winner)
- Tag Team of the Year (2010) - TMDK
- The Grand Slam Club (2011)