19 Sep

Tennis News This Australian Tennis player smashes two racquets, spits at an official in Cincinnati Masters

first_img Cincinnati: Controversial Australian star Nick Kyrgios was fined USD 113,000 after his explosive Cincinnati Masters meltdown which saw him smash two racquets, launch an abusive tirade at the chair umpire before appearing to spit at the official. The ATP said the massive sanction included individual fines for ball abuse, leaving the court without permission, an audible obscenity and unsportsmanlike conduct during his second round loss to Russia’s Karen Khachanov. Kyrgios, 24, was warned that he could also face another suspension from the sport once a full investigation has taken place. After the world number 27 lost 6-7 (3/7), 7-6 (7/4), 6-2 to Khachanov, he called umpire Fergus Murphy a “fuckin’ tool”, refused to shake his hand while spitting in the direction of the chair.  He had earlier been handed a time violation, docked a point and was warned again after leaving the court without permission at the end of the second set after which he was seen to destroy two racquets in the corridor. Kyrgios screamed at Murphy that he was the “worst umpire, hands down”. The various Kyrgios infractions included four fines of USD 20,000 each for unsportsmanlike conduct plus another USD 20,000 for verbal abuse.  “In addition to the on-site fines, the ATP is looking further into what happened during and immediately after the match to see if additional action is warranted,” said an ATP statement. “That could result in an additional fine and/or suspension.”   Kyrgios also had a run-in with Murphy at Queen’s Club in June after he accused a line judge of “match-rigging” and was given a code violation by the umpire. At the Italian Open in Rome on the eve of Roland Garros, he was disqualified and fined for throwing a chair on to court. He has also been at loggerheads with the world’s top two players, Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal this year.  He accused Djokovic of trying too hard to be liked and blasted the Serb’s post-match “cup of love” celebrations as “cringeworthy”.  Djokovic, Nadal clashesAfter beating Nadal in Acapulco earlier this year, the Spaniard said the Australian “lacked respect”. The pair met in a bad-tempered Wimbledon second round match in which Kyrgios admitted deliberately spearing a forehand directly at Nadal.  “Why would I apologise? I mean, the dude has got how many slams, how much money in the bank account?” said Kyrgios after his four-set defeat. “I think he can take a ball to the chest, bro. I’m not going to apologise to him at all.”   For good measure, Kyrgios picked up a code violation for unsportsmanlike behaviour and described the umpire as a “disgrace”, claiming his handling of the Centre Court blockbuster as “pathetic” for failing to warn the Spaniard over what he claimed was his pedestrian pace of play.  In 2015, in one of his more notorious outbursts, Kyrgios was fined for making a sexually disparaging remark in Canada about the girlfriend of three-time major winner Stan Wawrinka. The following year, he was banned for eight weeks after being accused of not trying at the Shanghai Masters.  German legend Boris Becker said he was saddened by Kyrgios’s behaviour.  “Absolutely agree that spitting/foul language/tanking should be punished hard but we have dilemma since we want strong personalities lead the sport (Roger/Rafa/Nole),” the six-time Grand Slam title winner tweeted. “NK has the game/charisma/guts but not yet the clarity of thought/maybe never ….it’s a shame.” Nick Kyrgios was fined for making a sexually disparaging remark in Canada in 2015.Kyrgios was banned for eight weeks after being accused of not trying at the Shanghai Masters.Kyrgios was disqualified and fined for throwing a chair on to court. For all the Latest Sports News News, Tennis News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps.center_img highlightslast_img read more

18 Sep

Update on the latest sports

first_imgTENNIS-SUSPICIOUS MATCHESTennis Integrity Unit eyes suspicious exhibition matchesLONDON (AP) — The Tennis Integrity Unit has raised concerns over 24 “suspicious matches” at exhibitions organized while the men’s and women’s tours are shut down amid the coronavirus pandemic. The TIU, which investigates match-fixing cases in the sport, said Friday it received reports of the matches at private tournaments staged between April and June.The reports are filed by gambling companies who track unusual betting patterns around matches. Suspicious betting patterns don’t necessarily mean a match was fixed. A similar effect can also happen if insider information about a player’s injury leaks. Associated Press Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditVIRUS OUTBREAK-SPORTSNHL to resume season in Canada next monthUNDATED (AP) — Hockey is the latest sport to finalize a return to competition after NHL owners and players approved an agreement to resume the season. July 11, 2020 The return-to-play plan, tentatively approved by the NHL and NHL Players’ Association on Monday, was ratified by the league’s board of governors and with majority approval from players following a three-day voting period that ended Friday. Along with it, the two sides also formally approved a four-year extension of the collective bargaining agreement.Games are scheduled to begin Aug. 1 in Toronto and Edmonton, Alberta. Coronavirus cases in the U.S. are pushing the league into Canada for the summer and fall until the Stanley Cup is awarded in late September or early October. Training camps open across North America on Monday, which is also the deadline for players to opt out of participating with no penalty. In other developments related to the COVID-19 pandemic:— The Pac-12 has become the second major conference to shift to a conference-only fall schedule amid growing concerns over the coronavirus pandemic. The decision covers football, women’s and women’s soccer and women’s volleyball. Conference-only schedules will be announced no later than July 31. The announcement came a day after the Big Ten opted to eliminate nonconference games for all fall sports. The Atlantic Coast, Big 12 and Southeastern conferences are still weighing options for fall sports. Update on the latest sports — Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott has tested positive for COVID-19. The 55-year-old tested positive late this week after experiencing flu-like symptoms and is self-quarantining at the direction of his doctor, according to a statement by the conference. Scott is continuing to carry on his duties as commissioner remotely.— Arizona Cardinals owner Michael Bidwill has tested positive for COVID-19. The team says after Bidwill developed symptoms, he tested positive and went to the hospital on the recommendation of his doctor. His condition has improved and he’s expected to be released this weekend. The team believes the 55-year-old Bidwill caught the virus while traveling and spending time on the East Coast for several weeks. He’s been working remotely since March and the team says he hasn’t had in-person contact coaches or players.— Swiss top-tier soccer club Zurich said it had more cases of coronavirus Saturday among its players and staff who are now in home quarantine. Zurich did not specify how many new COVID-19 cases were reported after the initial announcement Friday that a player had tested positive. Zurich’s Swiss Super League games on Saturday against Sion, and on Tuesday at Basel, have been postponed during the 10-day quarantine period through to next Friday. Zurich has seven league games left and it is unclear how that program can be met ahead of UEFA’s Aug. 2 deadline to complete domestic seasons. — German soccer club Union Berlin is offering free coronavirus tests for more than 20,000 fans as part of a plan to hold games in a full stadium in September. The Bundesliga (BOON’-dehsh-lee-guh) club will offer testing ahead of each game to fans and club staff. Each person must test negative for the virus within 24 hours of kickoff. Union wants to implement the plan in time for the first home league game of the new season, which could be as soon as Sept. 18. The club’s plan is more ambitious than those of other German clubs because it relies on mass testing instead of social distancing. The Berlin city government has a ban in place on mass gatherings until Oct. 24. OBIT-JACK CHARLTON England World Cup winner Jack Charlton dies at 85UNDATED (AP) — England World Cup winner Jack Charlton has died. Charlton was an uncompromising central defender who played alongside his brother, Bobby, in England’s World Cup-winning side in 1966 before enjoying coaching success with Ireland. Charlton was Footballer of the Year in England in 1967. He spent all his club career at Leeds from 1952-73, tying its all-time record of 773 appearances. He won every domestic honor, including the league title in 1969. His biggest achievement came with the England national team that beat Germany 4-2 after extra time in the 1966 World Cup final at Wembley Stadium. Charlton died at home on Friday in his native Northumberland in northeast England. He was 85.Premier League games will be preceded by a minute’s silence this weekend as a tribute to Charlton and players will wear black armbands. Private tennis exhibitions have proliferated after the ATP and WTA tours closed down in March. Some have little or no oversight. Besides a smattering of events with big-name players, there are many smaller events around the world with low-ranked players.last_img read more

17 Sep

Urology department gifted $13.3 million

first_imgThe USC Institute of Urology announced Tuesday that it received a $13.3-million donation to fund the institute’s USC Urology Robotics Center of Excellence and the Program for Prostrate Cancer Targeting.Gift · The USC Institute of Urology, located in the Healthcare Consultation Center I, received a $13.3-million anonymous donation. – Photo courtesy of USCThe anonymous gift was presented at the Urology Vision 2012 meeting, held Feb. 7, which highlighted the institute’s progress and advances since Dr. Inderbir Gill, chairman of the USC Urology Institute, arrived at the institute in 2009.President C. L. Max Nikias, who attended the event, said the gift will propel USC to be a global frontrunner in urology.“Today the USC Institute of Urology is an internationally renowned powerhouse in robotic and open surgery. Tomorrow we look forward to being a cutting-edge comprehensive world leader in urology,” Nikias said. “Surgeries that were once considered fantasies are now a fact. Our Institute of Urology is helping redefine and reshape the field of urology.”Gill said the institute focuses on the development and utilization of state-of-the-art technology.“To be successful, you need a market differentiator,” he said. “A true market differentiator implies being the world’s best at a specific endeavor, which also drives your economic engine. You are lucky if you have one true market differentiator. USC urology has two: robotic kidney and prostate cancer surgery and open bladder cancer surgery.”Since Gill’s arrival, the number of major urological surgeries and patient admissions has grown by more than 65 percent annually, having performed more than 2,500 bladder surgeries. Department collections also increased 65 percent between 2010 and 2012.The department, which includes seven clinical sub-specialty centers, has 21 faculty physicians and researchers, 18 urology residents, 10 postgraduate fellows, five physician assistants and 29 staff members.The institute received more than $3 million in research funding from the National Institute of Health in 2012, and was ranked No. 2 in the nation for urology. U.S. News & World Report ranked the institute 18th in the nation.last_img read more

16 Sep

Helton says the QB battle will last another week

first_imgFink’s mindsetDespite speculation that he would look to transfer if he did not win the starting job, Fink emphasized that he remains committed to the program. “I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else,” Fink said. “I honestly think this is the best spot for me, and at the end of the day, I’m just going to be the best teammate I can be. I’m a USC Trojan for life, no doubt about it.” Freshman quarterback JT Daniels winds up to throw a ball at practice on Tuesday at Howard Jones Field. He’s competing with sophomore Matt Fink and redshirt freshman Jack Sears for the starting spot. (Emily Smith | Daily Trojan)With just 10 days left until the season opener, head coach Clay Helton remained hesitant to announce the winner of his three-man quarterback competition between true freshman JT Daniels, redshirt sophomore Matt Fink and redshirt freshman Jack Sears. Helton’s decision got even more difficult on Tuesday with Daniels, widely believed to be the frontrunner after his impressive performance throughout training camp, throwing two interceptions in 11-on-11. “The same thing it’s always been – decision making, timing, accuracy,” Helton said, when asked what the factors will be in his choice. “We can fix timing and we can fix accuracy a lot better than we can fix the decision making. The guy that makes the best decision and goes to the right guy with the ball the most often is going to have the best chance to lead us to victory.”Helton acknowledged that Fink has the most experience running the offense since he’s the oldest, yet needs improvement on understanding protections and knowing where his hot routes are. Helton also said that Sears has stood out with his solid arm and athleticism, but still needs to understand the whole offense better. Most notably, however, Helton remained bullish on Daniels. Speaking about Daniel’s interceptions, Helton attributed the turnovers more to the savvy play of USC’s veteran defensive backs, noting the Daniels’ timing and decision making were correct. Helton also downplayed the importance of the mock games.“It’s more of a mental game … trying to get substitutions and working on certain situational stuff,” he said. “There’s not as many full speed routes being thrown.” Helton reiterated that point by saying Saturday’s final mock game will hold little weight in his final decision. “[The focus is] trying to make it as gamelike as possible,” Helton said.  “Substitutions, changing personnel groupings, situations on the QB … all the things that happen in games that make you mad as a coach, and being able to see who’s ready and who needs more time to develop.” Decision DateUnlike the QB competition two years ago between Sam Darnold and Max Browne, which Browne initially won, Helton isn’t under any pressure to give Fink or Sears a chance due to seniority. The general consensus has been that Helton is tempted by the prospect of having Daniels under center for potentially four years, but it appears now as if he is genuinely undecided. Helton explained that he wants to sit down with all three individually and talk to their parents in a private setting first out of respect and honor to all of the guys before ultimately making the announcement. last_img read more

31 Aug

British doctor reports she was raped in St Lucia Tourism interest…

first_imgPhoto Courtesy of independent.co.uk A British Doctor has claimed that she was raped while a women’s only sailing break in St Lucia.The woman, 45-year-old Georgina Mortimer, was attacked in her bedroom at Rodney Bay within hours of arriving, according to the reports. The mother of two reported that the attack lasted 15 minutes, with the rapist fleeing after someone started knocking on her door.The victim later said she discovered that there were 60 cases of rape reported in St Lucia, in the last year.The incident has drawn the ire of the Saint Lucia Hotel and Tourism Association (SLHTA) which expressed concern about the level of criminal activity against visitors in Saint Lucia.“It is very concerning and it is something that we have got to pay attention to,” SLHTA Chief Executive Officer, Noorani Azeez said in relation to crime on the Island.“That information is going to reach far and wide in a very short space of time. I think perhaps we need to reach out to them a bit more frequently, give them an update as to what is going on if it is not already being done, provide more timely status of what’s happening if it is not already being done – you know, I think more engagement will help to address some of the pain that they are going through right now, as well as making the necessary resources available so that the legal system can process these and other outstanding cases,” he said.“As a country – as a people we have got to do what we can to be vigilant and address these issues. But you know, it is one thing to talk the talk but it is another thing to walk the walk,” the SLHTA official was quoted by the St Lucia Times as saying.last_img read more

31 Aug

Barbados police detain head of offshore University

first_imgPolice have detained the chief executive officer of the Washington University of Barbados, Gopi Venkat Rao, after he was linked to a scheme that swindled hundreds of students of thousands of dollars.Venkat Rao is wanted in India amid allegations that he had promised the students admission to foreign medical universities. Soon after his arrest on Friday, nearly 200 students gathered for a meeting with a high level government team led by the Minister of People Empowerment and Elder Affairs Cynthia Forde and including Parliamentary Secretary for the Ministry of People Empowerment Neil Rowe, and officials from the ministries of labor,health, and education, and the Welfare Department.Students dupedThe students and faculty employees were only made aware of Venkat Rao’s deceit on Sunday, September 30 after media outlets India Times News Network and The Hindu newspaper had reported that over 200 students were duped by an educational consultancy firm of which he is the owner.Six of Venkat Rao’s staff members were arrested in India, and police launched a hunt for the director, his wife Nikita Venkat and an associate identified as Zameer, The Hindu reported.Promised placement in US medical colleges According to media reports, the fraudsters convinced clients that they had secured tie-ups with medical institutions in several countries. They allegedly promised them seats in medical colleges in the United States and China.A consultant for the Washington University of Barbados, Subash Agarwal, questioned the procedures the unaccredited university went through to be registered in Barbados.The on-line publication Barbados TODAY reported that Agarwal was speaking as a parent who invested US$32 000 in his daughter’s education.He was recruited by the Venkat’s company in India and was assured that the institution met all the necessary health requirements by a video which was presented to the staff before their arrival in Barbados.The video featured prominent Barbadian politicians guaranteeing that the institution met the necessarily stipulations, said Agarwal.Assured by former Min. of EducationHe claimed a month after the general elections, former Minister of Education Ronald Jones visited the campus and assured the staff and students that they would soon be accredited by the Barbados Accreditation Council.“They provided a letter to all the consulting people, gave us videos of the health minister, Prime Minister, videos in their function at the university . . . . I thought all was well.”last_img read more

28 Aug

“It will be a big mistake to sack Sellas Tetteh” – Clifford Aboagye

first_imgGhana U20 star Clifford Aboagye says the Ghana Football Association will be making a big mistake if they relieve Sellas Tetteh of his post as head of the Black Satellites team.There have been calls for Tetteh to be sacked after failing to reach the semi final – a target he set for himself – at this year’s Fifa U20 World Cup in New Zealand.But Clifford, who has worked with the coach at two World Cup tournaments noted that the Liberty Professionals technical director is the best person for the U20 job.“He has done it before, won the U20 World Cup so I don’t think this is the time we should tell him to go,” said Aboagye, in an exclusive interview with Joy Sports. “I know him very well and I have been with him in four major tournaments and he is a very good coach. I think he should rather be encouraged to do something better, the fact that we couldn’t reach the semi finals at the last tournament shouldn’t be a reason for people to say he should be sacked.“For me he is technically good I think he has to maintain his position.” Aboagye, together with a few other players, excelled at the tournament although Ghana was knocked out of the round of 16 of the tournament. Black Stars difficulty?It is not abnormal in Ghana for teams that do not do well at youth level to be ignored when places for senior teams are being considered. Will the same fate befall Aboagye’s team that crashed out of the U20 World Cup?“I don’t think that is the point but I believe it is up to the coach and his technical team to choose who is ready or not ready to play in the Black Stars,” Aboagye noted.“We as footballers it is always a dream to play for the senior national team and we are ready for any call up.” Clifford Aboagye plays his club football in Spain with Granada.–Follow Benedict on Twitter @KwesiBenedict. Get more updates with the #JoySports hashtag on Facebook/Twitter.last_img read more

16 Aug

‘Miracle On Ice’ forward Mark Pavelich arrested for allegedly attacking neighbor with pole, report says

first_imgMark Pavelich, who was a member of the of the 1980 USA “Miracle On Ice” team and later played in the NHL, allegedly attacked his neighbor with a metal pole after the two went fishing, according to the Duluth News Tribune.He was arrested Monday on charges of second- and third-degree assault, possession of an illegal shotgun and possessing a gun with a scratched off serial number in a Minnesota District Court. His bail is set at $250,000. Pavelich, 61, was ordered by a Minnesota judge to undergo a mental health evaluation to stand trial. The results of Pavelich’s mental health exam have to be reported to the court within 60 days in advance of a competency hearing, according to the Tribune.”There is reason to doubt (Pavelich’s) competency,” wrote Judge Michael Cuzzo in court order for the evaluation on Monday. Related News Capitals executive scores with $1M in Powerball winner The victim, James T. Miller, 63, claims Pavelich struck him with a 3- to 4-foot-long metal pole after the former hockey star accused Miller of “spiking his beer,” according to the criminal complaint, which was obtained by the Minnesota Star Tribune. Miller returned to his home but was going “in and out of shock.”Miller was hospitalized and he reportedly suffered two cracked ribs, a bruised kidney, a fracture to one of his vertebrae and several bruises across his body.Pavelich is expected to return to court Oct. 20.center_img Panthers to retire Roberto Luongo’s No. 1 jersey Pavelich was an integral member of Team USA’s 1980 squad that miraculously defeated the four-time defending gold medalist Soviet Union. The U.S. went on to win the gold medal, and the victory was dubbed “Miracle on Ice.”After his Olympic victory, Pavelich went on to play six full seasons in the NHL. He spent five years with the Rangers, scoring 99 goals in his first three seasons, before joining the Minnesota North Stars in 1986-87. He had a brief pro stint in Italy, but then returned to play two games with the San Jose Sharks in 1991-92.last_img read more

16 Aug

The Camp ”I’m Next” of NTA Tennis Academy of Sarajevo

first_imgNTA tennis academy of Sarajevo organizes a training camp ”I’m next” for the 16 best B&H youth, up to 12 and 14 years old.The camp starts today and ends on 31st August. Instructions on the topic ”Tactical and mental preparation” for young tennis players of B&H will give Aleš Filipčić from the Department of tennis at the University of Ljubljana.For the participants is organized medical examination, a workshop with psychologist, lecture of the Agency for anti-doping control, as well as several presentations and projections related to the topic of the camp.Upon completion of the camp all players will participate in the invitational tournament, which is rated for NIKE Junior Tour. Nike Junior Tour winners in the categories of juniors up to 12 and14 years old, even this year will participate in the World Nike Masters, which will be played in December in Florida (USA).(Source: Fena)last_img read more

14 Aug

Damian Priest on making big strides in NXT, ready for huge Fatal 4-Way match

first_imgJoin DAZN and watch more than 100 fight nights a yearThe 37-year-old Puerto Rican is thriving with the brand, putting on impressive matches with the likes of Pete Dunne and Killian Dain over the past year. On Wednesday night’s edition of NXT television (airing weekly on the USA Network from 8-10 p.m. ET), he’ll be part of a huge Fatal 4-way match against Dominik Dijakovic, Keith Lee and Cameron Grimes with the winner becoming the No. 1 contender for the NXT North American championship, which is currently held by Roderick Strong.Sporting News recently spoke with the “Archer of Infamy” about his improvement since joining NXT, being a part of the brand during its current growth period, being able to adapt his style as a big guy, and his unique entrance. Tomorrow night on #WWENXT:👊 @RealKeithLee, @DijakovicWWE, @ArcherOfInfamy & @CGrimesWWE battle for a shot at the NXT North American Title⚫️ The #DustyClassic kicks off with #Gallus vs. #UndisputedERA and The #ForgottenSons vs. #Imperium… and MORE!https://t.co/1lfm05TiQt— WWE NXT (@WWENXT) January 7, 2020SPORTING NEWS: You have an opprtunity at the WWE Performance Center of having Shawn Michaels as one of your coaches. What’s the experience like have him break down your work and offer advice?DAMIAN PRIEST: My in-ring work, in general, and concept of this business has completely changed. This is my 16th year and I feel like I’ve learned more in the past year than I have in the first 15 because, obviously, with the brains of those two guys, it’s invaluable the amount of knowledge they  have and not necessarily wanting to change you, just making what you do better which is the main philosophy that I learned there which is really cool. It’s been amazing and just the idea that I used to watch these guys on TV on a weekly basis and now, I’m texting and messaging them and picking their brains any time I want. It’s insane.SN: We’ve been watching you now for 16 years but, in some ways, it feels like we, the audience, are just now getting to know you. Do you feel that way?DP: Yeah. I’m the first one to admit that. People say “what took so long?” Well, me. I took so long. I know it was my own fault and I’m proud of what I’ve accomplished lately. I wish I would have known now what I knew then but that’s the main thing. I feel like because of the knowledge that I’ve gained here, it’s like I just started. It really does feel that way and I’m still constantly asking “was that OK, is this good, how canI make this better?” like if I just started. To me, it’s a journey with everyone. You guys watch me and it’s like you’re seeing me for the first time, like I’m brand new and I feel that way too. I don’t feel like I’ve been doing this for that long. I feel like I just started so I completely understand that because I feel it too and I’m the one in the ring doing it. SN: You mentioned how much of a difference it’s made for you since joining NXT and working with people like Terry Taylor and Shawn Michaels. What, in particular, has been the biggest different in your growth as a performer?DP: Just understanding why. We do a lot of things in this business. Not just in the ring, everything involved in the business. But sometimes we forget that there’s got to be a purpose and we get so used to doing things just for the sake of doing them. I call that, because I am from the indies, I call it indie style where you do things for instant gratification no matter what we’re doing but here, it’s not that. Here, we have to explain it to ourselves as to why we do the things we do and have them make sense. Once you can do that, and you can make everything that we do and try to make it make sense, it makes everything so much better. I think I’ve actually gained more knowledge here as far as understanding as far as when I do something, it has to mean the most possible and there has to be a reason behind it.What’s my motivation? What’s my goal? Just a lot of things I never thought about before. Before, you just go into a match or promo or appearance but there has to be more to it. I used to fight before I was in pro wrestling and it’s the same thing for preparation. You can’t just go out there and start swinging wildly. You actually have to have a game plan, you have to have a reason and know how to defend yourself and create a game plan. It’s kind of the same thing where I never put two-and-two together and never realized that’s the way I should have always attacked this business.SN: You’ve been with NXT now for just over a year. What was that transition like? Was it intimidating or exciting?DP: For me, it was both of those things. I was excited, obviously. When I decided that this was what I wanted to do with my life so many years ago, there was one goal: to make it with this company. This is the company I grew up watching. This is where I wanted to be since I was a kid. So when I finally got here, it was exciting but then it was wait a minute, now I have to deliver and I’m standing toe-to-toe with the absolutely best that this business has. I’m standing across the ring from this talent that this company has is intimidating and having all these geniuses and legends in the business around you, speaking to you, it’s very intimidating and nerve-racking. So at first, yeah, I almost wasn’t sure if I was good enough or if I belonged here because it’s just so much in front of you so it takes a minute to get acclimated. I feel confident now and that’s because everyone helps you and makes sure that you’re confident enough to be here because there’s a reason why we got hired. When I first came in, it was very cool but it was very nerve-wracking at the same time where you start questioning yourself a lot. SN: Was there anything in particular that helped you get over that?DP: Just being there all the time because they keep us busy. I think that helps when you get used to doing something and you have consistency. It helps you get over the hump. It’s just like working out. A muscle will be sore at first but eventually, it will get used to it and it will grow and get better. I don’t think there was any particular moment. I’ve had plenty of sit-down talks with plenty of people, coaches — our head coach (Matt) Bloom is awesome, he’s a great guy to talk to if you have a problem, even if it’s personal — and it’s cool because these guys were “the boys” too, and girls, and they can give you a perspective that an office person can’t because they get it, they were there. They help us out and guide us and make as easy of a path as possible to success..@ArcherOfInfamy FLIES to the outside in a WILD brawl with @PeteDunneYxB and @KillianDain on #WWENXT! pic.twitter.com/6PwQ9xqRCi— WWE (@WWE) November 14, 2019SN: One thing that really stands out about NXT is the team effort and it’s something that gets talked about, especially by people that went through NXT. It wasn’t too long ago in the wrestling business where it was more about yourself than the brand. So, what’s it like being a part of this brand and this mentality of everyone focused on pulling for one another and the brand?DP: Yeah, you described that perfectly as far as the way it used to be. Now, I think a lot of it what has to do with it is that everyone wants the business to succeed now. Before, everyone just worried about one person and that was themselves. Now, it goes without saying that we have to be somewhat selfish because this in an individual business at the end of the day but overall, we still want the business as a whole to succeed so we have to work together to do that. There’s not one person that can do that on their own and I think we all understand that. And  a lot of us have similar stories, overcoming adversity, the struggles of being out there and making zero to very little money just trying to make it and finally getting an opportunity.A lot of us have dealt with that so we can connect on that level so it helps and then, again, being around each other and seeing everybody work hard and motivating each other. It helps make you want to motivate somebody else and it keeps going and it’s a revolving door of people helping people. When you also have a staff around us doing the same thing and encouraging  it, it makes it easier. It’s taught us, especially at the PC (Performance Center), it really focuses on the positive side of what we do because there are a lot of negatives. Obviously, we’re on the road all the time, we’re away from family but the positive is to keep motivating and helping each other so that we can live the happiest we can doing something we actually love.SN: There’s so much going on with NXT right now, especially over the past few months since the start of the weekly show on USA Network. There are a lot of different directions and potential matchups that are possible every week. What’s it like to be in the middle of that?DP: (laughs) It’s insane. it’s so cool. Every week, I come to work and  it’s exciting because sometimes I don’t know who I’m going to work with or who I’m going to be in the ring with or what’s the plan but you know it’s going to be good no matter what. There’s nothing where I walk in going “oh, I hope I don’t have this today”. There’s no such thing so it’s exciting. It doesn’t matter who I work with because the talent across the board is through the roof. There is nothing going to work where I’m thinking I hope I don’t have to do this today. It’s always exciting. I don’t remember ever being happier in my life as far as career-wise and that’s because it’s exciting every weekend and every Wednesday. There are so many possibilities because there’s so much talent here. SN: You’re not only a big, agile guy but your style works so well with so many different people. We’ve seen that with someone like Killian Dain to somebody like Pete Dunne. Now, you have this big Fatal 4-Way match on NXT TV this week against Dominik Dijakovic, Keith Lee and Cameron Grimes. What do you think you mesh so well with people of different sizes and styles?DP: You know, everybody is different. For me, I was just honest with myself years ago and I wanted to be able to adapt and be good enough to put on a good performance against anybody and I worked on it. I worked on my agility to be able to move with somebody my size or bigger. And then I worked on things where if I have to slow down the pace and be the big man, so to speak, with someone smaller. I purposely like at that and it goes with watching matches, watching some back, watching people that knew how to work and then taking what pertains to me and finding something there and then using what I’ve learned. Then, having guys like Shawn Michaels kinda help me perfect it if there’s such thing in this business.I’m prideful in that because I work hard at it. I work hard at the fact that I wanted to be able to put on at least a halfway decent performance against anybody from any style. I’ve worked on developed a consistent in-ring ability with any star so I’ve studied European wrestling, Japanese wrestling, South American wrestling, and obviously American wrestling. I’ve studied a lot of different things and tried to train with people who teach that style so that I can adapt to it even easier. And like you said, we have this Fatal-4-way match and, you talk about styles and size differences, and here we go.SN: You have one of the coolest entrances in all of wrestling. How did that come together?And the earth becomes my throne…@WWENXTSick music by @thesilencer1027 🤘🏹#LiveForever pic.twitter.com/zLIgdPmyAo— Damian Priest 🏹 (@ArcherOfInfamy) June 28, 2019DP: When I was kid and fell in love with this business, it had nothing to do with the coolest move in the world or anything. For me, it was the spectacle, the idea of we can be perceived as something bigger than just your neighbor. I’ve always kept that, even when I worked in other companies, I always made sure that my presence was felt a little differently than everybody else. There’s no shortage of good pro wrestlers and good entertainers. There’s so many of them nowadays. But I’ve always been adamant about the way I was presented. I wanted to make sure it was special every time. I didn’t want somebody to turn on the TV midway through an entrance and change the channel. I wanted them to be intrigued without me even performing yet in the ring. That’s how I feel in love with the business. Back in the day, I watched The Undertaker’s entrance, I watched The Ultimate Warrior’s entrance and I was intrigued without even knowing what they were going to do in the ring. It was mesmerizing and I wanted to make sure that was a part of what my presentation was. I had a writeup of ideas that I brought to Triple H. He was super cool, didn’t turn down any ideas, he just morphed them to make them better and was very adamant about — in agreement with me about — that my presentation had to be unique and special because there’s no shortage of guys that can go in the ring. This company, especially our brand, it’s known for our go, go, go, in-ring style so that’s not an issue. The issue was creating something that stood out a little bit differently and created something a little more special which I’ve tried to do my entire career no matter where I worked. Here, with the production team we have, we’re able to do it in a way cooler way and I was excited. That was one of the things I was most excited about when I signed on to come to work here was the idea, the possibilities of presentation and how I could really get people’s attention without even having to throw a punch. It was exciting and then, when we actually did it, it’s my favorite thing. All the time when we go over things and ideas and I’m like as long as I have a full entrance, whatever you guys need me to do and everybody starts laughing because that, to me, is so important, the presentation aspect. I’m proud of what we’ve been able to do and the way it’s perceived. People dig it and I’m glad because we worked hard at it.SN: On a final note, how are your friends and family in Puerto Rico following the recent earthquake?DP: I literally just got off the phone about 20 minutes ago. Yeah, everyone seems to be doing OK. I guess it’s more frightening because of the unknown of what’s coming. If another one hits in the water and there’s a big tsunami or something. It’s more of the fear of what might come next. As of now, everyone is OK. There’s a lot of power outages and structural damage here and there but the people are OK for the most part. That’s the main fear right now is what could come next. With everything that’s happened in recent years, they’re pretty resourceful  at this point. In that sense, they’re going to continue doing their thing on the island but it just stinks because it’s one thing after another there. It can take a long time to get to where you want to go.NXT superstar Damian Priest is a perfect example. After 15 years of working on the independent circuit, he finally impressed the WWE brass and signed with the NXT brand in late 2018. It was a long road for the fighter-turned-wrestler who always had aspirations of making it to this stage. last_img read more