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Saturday, December 5, 2015

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All Eyes On: HighRisk Impact

By @YourBuddyCJ

The beginnings of a wrestler's career isn't something you hear about that often. We all see the glitz, the glamour, and the fame of it all, but how about when they're still working their way up through the ranks of the wrestling world? I got a chance to talk to two guys who are doing just that. They are making names for themselves through promotions in the South, and I can certainly see them making it to one of the big stages in the future. Get to know Austin Knight and Dante HP, collectively known as HighRisk Impact.

CJ: Tell me where your love of pro wrestling began...

Dante: I was sitting in bed with my dad and we were flipping through TV channels and we came across Monday Night Raw. It was like the last few minutes of it and there was a bunch of people in the ring fighting and then you hear (Glass shatters)  Here comes Stone Cold Steve Austin and he starts beating everyone up and stunning people all over the place. Then after the ring was cleared, he began smashing beers and drinking them.

Austin: My family never really enjoyed watching wrestling. I had an uncle, though, who was a special needs person. He loved sitting down every Monday flipping between Raw and WCW. He really enjoyed the characters. I used to sit and watch it with him, and in a matter of days I fell in love with it. Heck, you could say it was love at first sight! I was always a Bret Hart guy growing up, but that changed with the Attitude Era.

CJ: Do you remember the first match you ever saw?

Dante: As far back as I can remember watching wrestling, I saw the Hardy Boyz vs Edge and Christian in a tag team ladder match. It was so awesome!

Austin: I really couldn't tell you who were the first people I saw in the ring, but I can tell you the ones that stuck with me. Shawn Michaels, Bret Hart, Goldust, Mr. Perfect, Randy Savage. The list could go for days.

CJ: Is that when you decided it was something you wanted to pursue as a career?

Dante: When i decided this was something I wanted to pursue as a career was after the ladder match. I loved the Hardy Boyz and their high-flying aerial moves. They are who made me want to pursue a career in Pro wrestling.

Austin: No, not really. I was really content with just being a fan. I never really thought I could do what these super humans were doing. I mean, come on, I was a nerdy kid. I couldn't have dreamt of what I would be today.

CJ: What was going through your minds the first time the two of you stepped in the ring?

Dante: First time I ever stepped in the ring, it was surreal. I didn't feel like it was real almost, and I was nervous as could be! I did the best I could, I had been taught the basics and other than that I had just done moves I liked or thought was cool. Now, years later, I see how bad I was.

Austin: Butterflies, Fear, and Excitement! The best match I had ever had, until I go back and watch them. You can see the frail kid trying not to faint, haha. It was something that I don't think I can ever match in terms of emotion.

CJ: Did you guys win your first match?

Dante: No

Austin: Come on, who does? I got beat pretty bad. Welcome to the indies, kid.

CJ: How did you come up with your in-ring names, Austin Knight and Dante HP, and where does the team name, "HighRisk Impact" come from? I personally think those are great names.

Dante: I came up with my in ring name from a video game for PS2 haha, Devil May Cry. The main character's name is Dante and the HP is my initials. The tag team name was both our ideas, Austin like the word Impact and I like the word HighRisk, so combined we became HighRisk Impact! Then I came up with our saying (Take the Risk.....Leave an Impact!)

Austin: It was one of those things where you are in a spot and have to think of something quick. Ever seen Spider-Man before he faces Bone-Saw? "What's your name kid?" It was sort of given to me and I ran with it.

CJ: What do you use as a finisher?

Dante: Sit-out Powerbomb and 450 Splash.

Austin: A man shouldn't limit himself to one move! If I had a signature, though, I would claim the superkick and frog splash!

CJ: Who do you consider to be your influences in the wrestling business?

Dante: Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy my top 2. Also there is Ricky Morton and Robert Gibson the Rock n Roll Express. They were really awesome!

Austin: Shawn Michaels and Randy Savage no doubt. These two were complete opposite, but had everything you needed to be a star. If I had 10% of their talent, I would be happy. Tag team wise, The Rock n Roll Express no doubt. HI RICKY!

CJ: What would you say is your biggest achievement as pro wrestlers so far, both individually and as a tag team?

Dante: As a singles competitor, I would have to say my biggest achievement was winning my first championship when I became the Severe Attitude Wrestling Cruiserweight Champion. Then as a tag team when we won our first tag team championship in ETCW in Alcoa, Tennessee. Now on another note, my biggest achievement so far is being blessed to be able to live this dream! I honestly have done more then I thought i ever would and I am excited for what the future holds!

Austin: Well, I would say just being able to perform in front of people who are wanting to do it themselves. I want to show people that it is okay to chase your dreams. I would've never thought I would be doing what I am today and I love it. Tag Team wise, we are rising so quickly that it seems so unreal. Who knows where we will be in the next few years!

CJ: Have you gotten a chance to learn from any old-timers in the business? If so, who were they and what did they teach you?

Dante: Yes. We both train now with Ricky Morton at the School of Morton in Chuckey, Tennessee. If you wanna be a Pro Wrestler, it is the place to be. I have trained and learned from Les Thatcher and his amount of knowledge is limitless when it comes to this business!  I have talked with Dr. Tom Pritchard and learned some from him. Last but not least, I met Jim Cornette and got to talk with him too.

Austin: Oh yeah, we are very lucky to be able to say we have trained with Les Thatcher and Ricky Morton, two people who have unlimited knowledge of the sport. Les taught us why you should do something and when to do it. Ricky is showing us the flair and teamwork aspect of the business. We have also met people like Jim Cornette and Tom Pritchard, both of whom passed knowledge to us.

CJ: Is a shot at getting into WWE your ultimate goal?

Dante: Honestly, No. My goal is to get to Ring of Honor. Now, when I get to that destination, who knows. I will say if WWE was to give us a try out, you can bet I'd be all over it!

Austin: Never say never. My main goal as of now would be Ring of Honor and New Japan. If WWE came knocking at the door, then of course I'm going!

CJ: If you had the chance to step in the ring with anyone, past or present, who would it be and why?

Dante: I would have to say mine would be Mr.Wrestlemania himself, Shawn Michaels! Why? He was and still is the best.

Austin: Shawn Michaels, no doubt! He has done it all. He's been in the best matches year after year, an icon and living legend. He could come back now and do it all over again!

CJ: What is your favorite match of all time from a fan perspective and why?

Dante: Wow that's a broad question! I am going to say it would be the TLC matches, they were just so unique and different!

Austin: Ricky Steamboat and Randy Savage. The perfect match. From A to Z it was flawless. I wish I could rewatch it again with no memory. It is amazing.

CJ: Finally, what advice would you give to anyone who is looking to get their start in professional wrestling?

Dante: I would say this: If you can dream it! You can live it! Get trained properly and take it serious. Above all, don't give up! it will be tough, but when you can see it coming to life, the reality of looking back on where you started is awesome!

Austin: You have to live it, breath it, and desire it. Treat it like job, not a hobby. Get trained with someone who has been somewhere. Don't waste your time trying to be everyone's friend and be yourself!

Check out some matches featuring HighRisk Impact here:



  1. What about the person who gave you your first shot? What about the guy who brought a brand new ring up to your all house and left it for you to train in? What about the guy who worked with you to get you all in the business? I guess he's not worth mentioning huh? Well Johnny Raynor would be so proud. And by the way do not use any pictures from Continental they belong to me.

  2. As probably the world's heavyweight champion of trolling..all I can say to the comment above me is....lol