John Cena On Not Understanding People Wanting To Be Famous, Wrestlers Being Nerds – Wrestling Inc.


John Cena has been known as the quintessential company guy for the WWE for over a decade. He was recently a guest on ID10T with Chris Hardwick and had some interesting thoughts on the wrestling business.

Cena explained a unique correlation between wrestlers and comic book characters. Cena said wrestlers can be considered nerds in a sense because of how they create their characters and present themselves as superheros or villains.

“We are in the business of imagination, and a lot of that creativity rests on your own shoulders. When you say ‘nerdy,’ and the things that nerds are drawn to, the creativity to video games or comic books, if that is what defines a nerd then we are all nerds because our job is to go out there and be a superhero and a super villain. It’s not like, I want to run a 40-yard dash as fast as I can. Now, creating a superhero character, if your character can look muscular or big, then you have the advantage of having your character look like a superhero. So, it’s only in your best interest to be in superhero shape, so that comes with the territory. We are not in a pure sport environment,” Cena said. “It’s a comic book existence, so that is why we share on certain views on culture and that is why we are so nice about everything because we shouldn’t be doing it as a job. It’s not an occupation that should exist. I think all of us should earn a living because we are never home, and our body certainly takes a beating, but I wouldn’t want to be doing anything else. I think any of my colleagues would be saying the same thing. It’s like, the joke is on them for paying us to do it. I know personally that i wouldn’t want to be doing anything else. I know that it is a time-dependent thing, so I am going to enjoy as long as I am on it.”

Cena was asked about wrestlers who get into the industry with the sole intent of becoming famous. Cena chided people who think that way because he believes the essence of the wrestling industry is about learning and performing. Being a professional wrestler is not easy, and he believes it takes a true commitment to the business to be successful.

“If your goal is, ‘I want to be famous’, what the f**k is the tangible of that? I don’t understand that. When I see a ring and I get in, and I say that I just want to learn, and I just want to sustainably do this for my entire life, for as long as I physically can, then the ups and downs will come. When it is up, you can keep the perspective of saying to yourself that you shouldn’t be here anyway, it’s a great perspective to have because it keeps you working hard,” he said. “Sometimes you see complacency in our workplace, and I don’t understand that, because if you really wanted to be here, and when put a microphone in front of them, and when they say that they have wanted to do this since they were a kid, then you have to take the bad s**t with the good stuff because it’s not all good, and it’s tough work, but you should enjoy all of it. You really get to test a person’s mental when things aren’t going their way. Oftentimes that is the case, but at the end of the day, you are a freaking pro wrestler. You may not have been paired with the person you wanted to work with, but at the end of the day, you are getting paid to perform in front of people, which is a good thing.”

John Cena On What Movie Recently Made Him Cry, Masculinity, Becoming A Father One Day

Cena also discussed his status as a company guy. He gave a lengthy explanation about his love for the WWE and how he has grown over the course of his storied career.

“For the longest, my goal, I’m a weird case because I love the company I work for. I am a company man. I know that I will not perform anywhere else in Pro Wrestling outside of the WWE because I love the company I work for. You have this life ark of I would like to become a Professional Wrestler. I would like to earn a WWE contract. I would like to become a champion. Then, when you ask yourself why you would like to become a WWE Champion and when you broke that down, it was so more people could enjoy WWE,” he said. “I hate the fact that Pro Wrestlers are judged a certain way. I hate the fact that when you walk into a room and people scour and say, ‘Oh, it’s those guys.’ That is fact. That is the way it is. We run episodic television, with no reruns, no off season. We have an incredible global reach. We have a streaming model that is off the charts. Just now, after 40 years of doing this, people are like, oh, wow, okay, this kind of works. The acceptance is due to the fact that YouTubers can be successful. I guarantee YouTubers face the same stigma of only being popular because of YouTube. That just hit me the wrong way early on in my career and it made it a goal of mine early on that I would like to leave this place better than I found it, which is why I did The Marine early on. I didn’t want to do movies. I enjoyed living the life, and going town to town feeling the heartbeat of the excitement of that animal. You guys know that if you are out there and telling a joke, or if they are buying the bit, you get immediate satisfaction; or, if you are bombing, it’s also immediate notice, like, I’m going to change this.

“It is always another town, and it’s always another chance,” he continued. “It’s the passion of the live animal that is unlike any other thing in this world, but the business model made sense. If I take a WWE performer and make him a movie star, then that is more eyes on WWE. Got it! That works with my mission statement, I am going to do this. I did a string a movies that were unsuccessful, and I gave it everything that I had, but my heart wasn’t into it. My heart was in the ring, and now after 15 years of being in the ring, I have to strip it down to the bear minimal of why I keep coming back to this thing? I don’t need to. I have been well taken care of by the WWE, so what it is? Why am I not able to have myself drift away? I love the storytelling aspect of it. It’s not the physical bumps, it’s not like I’m going to do a stunt better than the next guy so that people can appreciate my athletic ability. I am in the twilight of my athletic ability, but I am drawn back because of the material. This guy hates you for this reason, or, if often than norm, when the Creative Writer comes to you and says that you are going to be working with this guy, you guys figure it out on what to do.

“A lot of our guys frown upon that, but I literally take the guy and go into a room and ask him why we are fighting. We can come up with anything. Did I look at your girl the wrong way? Are you jealous of me, am I jealous of you? That is the imagination aspect, which is what makes us nerds. We can take something out of nothing. That is what reintroduced me to film, and I have used my fortunate career in the WWE to not have to do movies. To be handed a script, to read a script, and be like, that was great. I can be whatever they want me to be in it because i just read the story. If the story is good, then you just tell me whatever piece I am and I will be that piece. It is a different thing because you don’t have the heartbeat of the live audience, but I get to still be creative in my own way, but to answer your question, I never thought of crossing over other than the reason to change perception of what it means to be a WWE performer. Now, I can get the thing I am most passionate about, which is telling stories for the audience, but under a different format.”

If any any these quotes are used, please be sure to credit ID10T with Chris Hardwick via Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.

Source: ID10T with Chris Hardwick

Peter Bahi contributed to this article.



Jets 2018 Draft Report Card: Grading every pick – New York Daily News



It’s time to take out our red pen and pick apart the Jets 2018 draft class.


We won’t truly know how stupendous or horrific these picks actually are for a few years, but it’s always fun to reveal our immediate impressions. Here are our pick-by-pick grades:


Round 1 (3): USC quarterback Sam Darnold


Did the best quarterback in this coveted draft class really land in Gang Green’s lap? Pinch me. This must be some sort of glorious dream. For the third time in four years, a blue-chip prospect projected to be off the board when the Jets were on the clock fell to Mike Maccagnan. Here’s hoping the Jets general manager has already sent a fruit basket to the Giants for passing on the USC signal caller.


I’m borderline giddy about this pick. Darnold will be a star as long as the Jets don’t screw it up.


Trust the process. Don’t rush the process.


Darnold will get an opportunity to play this season, but don’t expect miracles.


First order of business: Let’s see how quickly the rookie absorbs Jeremy Bates’ playbook in practice, training camp and the preseason. Josh McCown will be a terrific mentor during this process.


Darnold has the makings of being a difference maker. I am head over heels about this pick.


GRADE: A-plus

Sam Darnold will make-or-break the Jets’ draft class.

Sam Darnold will make-or-break the Jets’ draft class.

(Julie Jacobson/AP)


Round 3 (72): Fort Hays State DL Nathan Shepherd


Talk about a circuitous route to the NFL.


Here’s what we know: Shepherd is likely an extremely nice human being. After all, he’s Canadian. Here’s what we don’t know: Will a guy who took two years off in the middle of his college life (for financial reasons) and thrived in Division II be able to make a meaningful contribution in the NFL?


The scouting community loves the 6-4, 315-pounder. Todd Bowles will use Shepherd as a 3-4 defensive end to help replace Mo Wilkerson. Best case scenario: The rookie can find his niche as a rotational player in 2018.


Although Mike Maccagnan downplayed the fact that Shepherd will turn 25 in October, that sort of bothers me. He’ll need time to adjust to this level of play.


GRADE: C-plus


Fourth Round (No. 107): Miami TE Chris Herndon


Herndon might be the most athletic tight end on the roster when he is healed from a torn MCL suffered last November. The 6-4, 253-pounder isn’t expected to be fully healthy for another 4-6 weeks. The Jets desperately need pass-catching help. Herndon and Jordan Leggett, who missed his rookie season due to injury, will get plenty of opportunities this summer. Herndon has the athletic and pass-catching edge. Who knows, maybe he solves Gang Green’s problem at this position.


GRADE: C

Miami tight end Christopher Herndon could make become a contributor when he's healthy.

Miami tight end Christopher Herndon could make become a contributor when he’s healthy.

(Lynne Sladky/AP)



Sixth Round (No. 179): Tulane CB Parry Nickerson


This could be a sneaky good pick for Maccagnan. Nickerson is a massive health risk given his history of multiple knee surgeries, but he’s a blazer. His 4.32 40-yard dash time is clear evidence of that. The 5-10, 182-pound Nickerson didn’t play in the slot in college, but that will be his best opportunity to see the field in 2018. Current nickel corner Buster Skrine will be a free agent after the season.


If he can stay healthy – and it’s a big if – the Jets might have gotten a steal.


GRADE: B


Sixth Round (No. 180): UCONN DT Foley Fatukasi


The 6-4, 318-pound Queens native will have an opportunity to be a part of Bowles’ defensive line rotation. He might be able to provide some nose tackle relief.


At this point in the draft, you’re just keeping your fingers crossed that the guy is good enough to earn a spot on the 53-man roster.


GRADE: C-minus


Seventh Round (No. 204) Virginia State RB/KR/PR Trenton Cannon


The Jets are keeping their fingers crossed that the 5-11, 185-pound Cannon can emerge as a viable option on kick returns and punt returns. His Division II college production in the backfield was nothing to sneeze at (1,638 rushing yards and 17 touchdowns), but he’ll have to prove his worth on special teams. Gang Green desperately needs returner help. Why not take a flier with this kid?


GRADE: B-minus


OVERVIEW


The brain trust addressed a couple of important areas of need. No, offensive line was not one of them. But I’m not going to get bent out of shape over it. Let’s see how the current group performs in Rick Dennison’s scheme. In the end, this draft will be judged on how Darnold’s career unfolds. If he becomes a franchise quarterback, Maccagnan will be hailed a genius. If not, well, you know.


But I got a pretty damn good feeling about the Malboro Man’s grandson.


OVERALL GRADE: B (with a possibility of being an A-plus in five years).

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James Haskell slams rugby as 'pathetic sport' after high tackle ruling – Stuff.co.nz


Wasps No 8 James Haskell lets rip at rugby’s rules after he was penalised for making a high tackle.

Former England No 8 James Haskell says rugby is becoming pathetic after his Wasps side was denied a try because of a high tackle he made.

Haskell, who played a season for the Highlanders, came off the bench for Wasps against the Northampton Saints on Sunday and was disheartened by the referee’s decision when a John Bassett touchdown was disallowed because of a high tackle by Haskell in the build-up.

“I’m pretty emotional about that last penalty, I don’t know what’s happened to rugby. It sounds like I’m fading out at the right time because it has becoming a bit of a pathetic sport at the moment I think,” he said afterwards.

A riveting game was decided by a Christian Wade double but Wasps could have won by more if Bassett’s try had been allowed.

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It was the 33-year-old’s last home game for Wasps, who beat the Saints 36-29.

James Haskell has been a part of English Rugby World Cup campaigns and a Lion's tour in New Zealand.

DAVID ROGERS/GETTY IMAGES

James Haskell has been a part of English Rugby World Cup campaigns and a Lion’s tour in New Zealand.

The former international has struggled to find a home within the English Premiership and may have to look abroad. However, if his post-match comments are genuine, he will be happy to leave the game altogether.

The win clinches a top-four spot for Wasps and a semifinal against the Newcastle Falcons.

Former England international James Haskell played a season in Super Rugby with the Highlanders in 2012.

LOREN BATTERSBY/GETTY IMAGES

Former England international James Haskell played a season in Super Rugby with the Highlanders in 2012.


 – Stuff



Starting with Browns' Baker Mayfield, most intriguing story lines out of the NFL draft – USA TODAY


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SportsPulse: Shaquem Griffin, a one-handed linebacker who made history by being drafted by the Seahawks, on what motivates him and the crazy story of how he found out he got drafted.
USA TODAY Sports

With the 2018 NFL draft now in the books, the dust will begin to settle for the talent acquisition portion of the offseason. Now comes the assembly phase. Rookie minicamps will soon take place, veteran strength and conditioning workouts continue, and in roughly a month, offseason practices begin.

Here’s a look at 10 of the most intriguing post-draft story lines around the league:

State of the Browns: This offseason featured dramatic moves for Cleveland. From the trades for wide receiver Jarvis Landry, quarterback Tyrod Taylor and cornerback Damarious Randall, to the signing of seven free agents. Taking Baker Mayfield first overall marked the pinnacle. But how quickly will it all come together? Hue Jackson (1-31 the last two seasons) will start Taylor while developing Mayfield. How long will they manage to keep the Heisman Trophy winner in a backup role? That depends on Taylor’s success. Meanwhile, future Hall of Fame left tackle Joe Thomas has retired. Cleveland will try to replace him with second-round pick Austin Corbett.

Win-now Giants: By passing on Sam Darnold or another top quarterback at No. 2, and instead taking running back Saquon Barkley, the Giants signaled they remain fully confident in Eli Manning. Barkley continues the upgrading of Manning’s supporting cast after the free-agent signing of left tackle Nate Solder. Now, the attention shifts back to Odell Beckham Jr. The Giants resisted pressure to trade him. Now will they give him the rich contract extension he seeks?

More: NFL draft grades 2018: Which teams had best, worst classes?

More: Key impressions from NFL draft: Steelers grab another potential receiving star

The Patriots’ present: Forget prepping for life after Brady. Bill Belichick remains focused on the now. He gave Brady his replacement for Solder (Georgia left tackle Isaiah Wynn 23rd overall), and added a potential big-play running back (Georgia’s Sony Michel 31st overall). The Patriots have suffered key losses in free agency before but always plug in new pieces and keep rolling. They aim to do so once again.

Jon Gruden’s comeback: Gruden and general manager Reggie McKenzie passed on a much-needed top-flight defensive player at 15th overall. Instead, they picked UCLA’s Kolton Miller, who could start at right tackle. Defensive help followed on Days 2 and 3 of the draft. But the Raiders still have a hole at inside linebacker with veteran play-maker NaVorro Bowman remaining unsigned. Gruden’s other ongoing mission involves helping quarterback Derek Carr reach elite status. Giving him a weapon like wideout Martavis Bryant (acquired via trade from the Steelers last week) should help.

Ravens’ QB picture: You knew they would take a developmental quarterback with Joe Flacco aging. But Ozzie Newsome made a splash, trading back into the first round to take Lamar Jackson. The rookie could benefit from a developmental year behind Flacco and fellow former Heisman winner Robert Griffin III. But after this season, Flacco has no guaranteed money left on his contract.

Vrabel’s first go-round: The former Patriots linebacker began his head coaching career by taking a pair of athletic, versatile and physical linebackers (Alabama’s Rashaan Evans 22nd and Boston College’s Harold Landry 41st). Those moves signify the kind of mindset Vrabel wants his squad to adopt. Over the next few weeks, Vrabel and offensive coordinator Matt LaFleur will continue installing their systems while laying the foundation for what they hope is a productive first training camp.

Year 2 in Buffalo: Coach Sean McDermott and the Bills find themselves in an interesting position. They’re trying to make it back to the playoffs after squeaking in last season. But they’ve hit the reset button on offense by shipping Taylor to Cleveland, signing A.J. McCarron in free agency, and drafting Josh Allen seventh overall. Meanwhile, they’re also having to replace two long-time veteran offensive linemen in Richie Incognito and Eric Wood. Can fifth-round guard Wyatt Teller (Virginia Tech guard) help here? Buffalo will have to rely heavily on its defense again. Two draft picks, linebacker Tremaine Edmunds (16th overall) and defensive tackle Harrison Phillips (third round) could provide sparks.

Seattle’s new Griffin: The Seahawks delivered one of the more emotional stories of the draft when they selected Shaquem Griffin in the fifth round. Griffin, who joins his twin brother, defensive back Shaquill, on the roster, becomes the first NFL player with only one hand to be drafted. He shined at the scouting combine with dazzling speed and aims to prove he’s more than a feel-good story. The 6-0, 227-pounder will likely see time in sub packages as a linebacker, and on special teams.

Rams’ reload: After an aggressive March and early April (trading for cornerbacks Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib and wide receiver Brandin Cooks while signing defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh), the Rams used the draft to bolster depth. In OTAs, the focus will center on fitting all these new pieces together with the core group that produced the NFC West title. Another priority: signing defensive lineman Aaron Donald to a much-deserved contract extension.

Recovering quarterbacks: The Miami Dolphins passed on drafting a quarterback despite Ryan Tannehill coming off two major left knee injuries in the past 18 months. They’ve said all along that they view him as their starter for 2018 and expect he’ll be ready to take the field for offseason practices. But Tannehill hasn’t played a game since December of 2016. Meanwhile, OTAs will feature continued recoveries for two other QBs coming off ACL tears. Neither Houston’s Deshaun Watson nor Philly’s Carson Wentz will practice this spring, but continue to aim for Week 1 returns.

Follow Mike Jones on Twitter @ByMikeJones.

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Hawkeye tennis drops quarterfinal match – The Daily Iowan


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Iowa men’s tennis dropped another match to nationally ranked Ohio State in the Big Ten Tournament quarterfinals.

By Lauren Jimmerson

lauren-jimmerson@uiowa.edu

The Iowa men’s tennis team dropped its second match in the Big Ten Tournament on April 27 at the Hawkeye Tennis & Recreation Complex. The Hawkeyes fell, 4-0, to No. 1 seed Ohio State for the second time this season.

For only the eighth time this year, Iowa lost the doubles point. The Buckeyes claimed the victory (6-2) over Kareem Allaf and Jonas Larsen. Will Davies and Piotr Smietana fell to Ohio State’s 54th-ranked tandem (6-3), and Jake Jacoby and Joe Tyler were trailing when the match was suspended.

Even after dropping the doubles point, head coach Ross Wilson still believed the squad performed well.

“I thought coming out in doubles, obviously, No. 3 doubles came out ready to go,” he said. “They got up, and [had an] early break, and were serving four out of five when the doubles point got stopped. [We] were up on an early break at 2 as well, just couldn’t hold it there. And 1, I think it just got away from us. We have played so well at No. 1 doubles all year, it’s just really tough to lean on a team when they have won 19 matches at that spot.”

Ohio State entered the weekend boasting five nationally ranked singles players, led by fifth-ranked Mikael Torpegaard playing No. 1 in the Buckeye lineup.

Following him are No. 40 JJ Wolf, No. 95 Kyle Seeling, No. 101 John McNally, and No. 110 Martin Joyce.

After they handed the Buckeyes an early lead, Wilson challenged the Hawkeyes to return in singles.

RELATED: Men’s tennis secures quarterfinals appearance

“Going into the singles I told the guys, let’s see what happens when we get to four-all, five-all sets, and the guys accepted that challenge and really did well,” he said.

Wolf quickly shut out Smietana, sweeping the Iowa freshman in straight sets. Shortly after, Tyler fell in straight sets to McNally. Joyce clinched the match for the Buckeyes, prevailing over Davies (6-3, 6-4).

Allaf entered the weekend undefeated in conference matches. The redshirt sophomore claimed a tiebreak victory in the first set one and was leading in the second when the match was clinched. Larsen dropped his first set and was trailing in the second when the match ended.

Josh Silverstein battled in a close match against Torpegaard. The Iowa senior entered a tiebreaker but could not follow through on his serves.

“One of the things [Silverstein] struggles with is his first serve,” Wilson said. “If he’s out there, and he’s really into it, and he’s got great energy, he’s such a good competitor and can create so much momentum as the match goes on.”

The Buckeye ultimately claimed the first set, but Silverstein pushed back to gain a 2-1 lead when Ohio State clinched the match.

Overall, Wilson is discouraged by the loss but remains content with the progress he has seen this year.

“I know we lost some [close] sets, but we were right in there and able to win it. Unfortunately, it didn’t go our way, but Ohio State is a great team,” he said. “We’ve made some great strides this year, and I’m just really happy with where we’re at and with what we have coming back.”

The Buckeyes went on to capture their third-consecutive Big Ten Tournament Championship on Sunday, sweeping Illinois in the final match. Ohio State has now won eight tournament championships.

 

 

 

 

 



Michigan State football has plenty of NFL draft prospects for 2019 – Detroit Free Press


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Michigan State’s offense won the annual spring game, and coach Mark Dantonio tried to put the Spartans in tough situations.
Chris Solari/DFP

EAST LANSING — Michigan State had just one player — center Brian Allen — taken in this year’s NFL draft.

Keeping the Spartans’ draft streak alive next year shouldn’t be as dramatic.

ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr. said earlier this month that the Spartans “will have several” NFL prospects next year at this time. And depending on how this season goes for a number of MSU’s juniors, it could be more.

The phrase “it’s never too early to look ahead” defines two things in football — recruiting and the NFL draft. So let’s glimpse into the crystal ball to see which Spartans might be hearing their name called at the 2019 NFL draft.

Seniors

Felton Davis III, WR: Davis blossomed into one of QB Brian Lewerke’s top targets and a third-team All-Big Ten pick by the coaches. At 6-foot-4, he could have considered entering the 2018 draft, but his size and sure-handedness projects him as the 11th-best wide receiver for next year according to draftscout.com.

Jake Hartbarger, P: A four-year starter and honorable mention All-Big Ten pick in 2017, Hartbarger has shown the ability to both boom punts vertically and hang them up horizontally to pin opponents deep in their own territory. He is rated ninth among 2019 punters by draftscout.com, but NFL teams showed a willingness to draft punters, taking four in this year’s draft.

LJ Scott, RB:Scott bypassed entering the draft following his junior year, though he has yet to have a 1,000-yard rushing season in college. He is ranked the 14th-best running back for 2019 by draftscout.com, but showing durability and ability to hold onto the ball could boost him into a second-day selection.

More: Michigan State’s Chris Frey agrees to deal with Carolina Panthers

Matt Sokol, TE: A converted high school quarterback, Sokol continues to grow into his position and develop as a pass-catcher and blocker. His acumen and athletic ability has him rated fifth at tight end by draftscout.com.

Khari Willis, SS: NFL teams love a strong safety who can crash down and fill gaps in run support, which Willis excels at doing. The All-Big Ten honorable mention in 2017 is ranked 13th at strong safety for the 2019 draft by draftscout.com.

Others (with draftscout.com ranking): David Beedle, OG (21st); Andrew Dowell, OLB (57th); Grayson Miller, SS (40th).

Juniors

David Dowell, FS: Dowell earned first-team All-Big Ten by the media and honorable mention by the coaches in his first year as a starter, thanks to ranking second in the league and 11th nationally with five interceptions. He is the seventh-best safety prospect for 2019 according to WalterFootball.com.

Justin Layne, CB: The converted wide receiver has the combination of size (6-3), speed and ball skills that NFL scouts love. He’s only entering his third season at MSU after playing as a true freshman but earned honorable mention All-Big Ten last year.

Brian Lewerke, QB: NFL teams are starting to look more at mobile quarterbacks who can run the ball, and Lewerke fits that bill. He would need a strong season of throwing the ball downfield with accuracy, however, to consider leaving early.

Raequan Williams, DT: An honorable mention All-Big Ten pick by the media, Williams was one of the anchors up the middle for MSU’s run defense that finished second nationally. A big junior season could vault him up draft boards, and he is considered the 10th-best defensive tackle who could enter the draft by WalterFootball.com.

Others: Joe Bachie, LB; Mike Panasiuk, DT; Darrell Stewart Jr., WR; Kenny Willekes, DE.

Contact Chris Solari: csolari@freepress.com. Follow him on Twitter @chrissolari. Download our Spartans Xtra app for free on Apple and Android devices!