As seen above, WWE NXT Superstar Damian Priest recently appeared on the "X-PAC 12360" podcast with WWE Hall of Famer Sean "X-Pac" Waltman. You can download the podcast on iTunes or Spotify. The folks at the show also sent us highlights from the episode.
Priest is set to do battle at NXT "Takeover: WarGames 2019" on Saturday night in a Triple Threat with Pete Dunne and Killian Dain. The winner will then challenge NXT Champion Adam Cole at WWE Survivor Series the next night, with the title on the line. Priest talked to Waltman about the "Live Forever" mantra that his character uses, and how close he really is to his character.
"This is the closest to me that I've ever been in this business," Priest said. "The idea to live forever is to accomplish as much as I can in this business so that my name gets remembered.
"When you think about iconic rock stars, like Morrison, and bands like Priest and Motley Crue, they'll never get forgotten. So the idea is to have that image, because that's the way I want to live, or at least how Damian Priest wants to live, because that's the way somebody who's never going to be forgotten lives. And to a certain degree, that is me. I try to live kind of like a rock star-ish life, where I like going out, I like going to concerts, I head-bang. This is all real stuff."
Priest also recalled his original WWE tryout back in 2010, when WWE's developmental territory was still known as FCW or Florida Championship Wrestling. Priest said he was upset about not getting hired, but now he knows he wasn't ready.
"I remember then being upset that I didn't get hired," Priest said. "Looking back, if I wasn't ready five years ago, then nine, ten years ago, I definitely wasn't ready. Not even close. I wasn't even in shape. I was in a shape, it was round, but I didn't know the inside of a gym at all. I looked horrible, I was sloppy in the ring. But to me, I thought I was ready. Looking back now, I can be honest with myself and know that, although it took me a very long time to get here, I'm the most prepared I could be."
Formerly known on the indies as Punishment Martinez, Priest finally signed with WWE in October 2018. Priest really does credit "the power of positive thinking" with helping him go places in the world of pro wrestling. He said the whole "being positive" thing isn't a work.
"It's not a work," Priest revealed. "That 'being positive' thing, it really works. I, like anybody else, would hear stories of others [about] the power of positivity, and I always thought, 'Okay, whatever.' But then, when you really start making an effort to do it, it's incredible the amount of positive that can happen in return. Just because you're not so focused on the negative, and you just keep moving forward and moving forward and moving forward. So even when I did my [first] PC tryout and I was turned down, while I was upset, it didn't stop me. I still kept on working hard, and I still got more opportunities. I got an actual job in wrestling and I got to travel different parts of the world wrestling, which I'd never done in all the years I'd been in the business. And then, when I wrote this place off, all of a sudden, I'm getting a phone call, and I'm like, 'This is unexpected, but wow.'"