No Way Jose Q&A: Say hello to NXT's newest Superstar
Arguably the most rhythmically inclined Superstar ever seen in NXT, No Way Jose has epitomized the term “making an impression.” Between his Latin dance moves, infectious smile and untamed energy, No Way Jose has quickly become a fan favorite of the NXT Universe. This week, WWE.com sits down with the new Superstar to talk NXT competition, his unique style and so much more.
WWE.COM: Tell us, who exactly is No Way Jose?
NO WAY JOSE: If I wanted to be brief, you can say No Way Jose is a one-man fiesta! But since we have time, let’s dive into this a bit. The name itself is a nickname that stuck, because back in the day, my Latin temper was a bit more volatile. Would anyone want to mess with Jose back then? No way!
But with time, I grew up and tamed the fire once I started opening my eyes to the rhythm of life. There are so many people everywhere, all doing their own thing, but when they come to a show they want to smile. People want to have a great time. The way I see it, there ain’t no way you’re wiping this smile off of my face. That’s what I’m all about now: a nickname to remind me of where I came from, along with a smile and carefree attitude to show where we can end up.
WWE.COM: We’ve seen you incorporate a very unique offense into your matches thus far. What inspires your style?
JOSE: I’ve been all over the world experiencing different cultures and enjoying the uniqueness every culture has to offer. When given the opportunity, I realized no matter where you are, dance is something everyone enjoys and everyone has their own take on it. From the samba in Brazil, merengue and bachata in the Dominican Republic, to polka in Germany and even the can-can in France, dance is universal. I'm trying to create my own from the lessons I’ve learned, and it seems like dance-fighting is becoming a thing. It’s like capoeira, but not as smooth. Incorporate that with some of the highlights of my childhood sport, baseball, which is huge in the Dominican Republic, and it all just fits naturally for me in the ring.
WWE.COM: What kind of music do you enjoy listening to away from the ring?
JOSE: To be honest, I listen to just about anything. Everything has its own uniqueness, and once you get past the initial “I've never heard this”-type of shock, you learn to enjoy it. Merengue and bachata are my go-to choices, but throw in anything, anything at all — some rock, funk, hip-hop, K-pop, J-pop, bebop and all that jazz — and you'll see me rocking to the rhythm of the beat!
WWE.COM: What kind of mindset do you have in the ring?
JOSE: You ever been in the club or having fun with friends and your song comes on? “Oh that's my jam!” you yell. You lose yourself in the moment. Well, buddy, I actually have a song (“No Way,” available on iTunes) and when it hits, that's my jam, that's my moment. I know this is my opportunity to showcase what I got, so I get excited and I think the people feel that energy. In turn, I feed off of that energy they give back. It’s fiesta time, no doubt, but I know it’s time to go to work.
WWE.COM: We touched on it a little bit earlier, but tell us more about your upbringing.
JOSE: In the Dominican Republic, you see the resorts and such, but where I come from we didn’t have that kind of stuff. I grew up in the parts of the city you won’t put on a postcard, but it’s home. We struggled, but we survived. Seeing my father work from 2 a.m. to overtime, my mom work all day and then take care of three children who were a handful, the struggle was real, the bills were never ending, but we made it thanks to them. I was always taught to not let the tough moments beat you, but, instead, find a way to overcome. It was easy to be angry, but the toughest lesson to learn was that you can always smile and let the positive vibes win.
WWE.COM: Let’s look down the road here in NXT. Who are some of the Superstars you look forward to facing?
JOSE: Everyone wants to face the champ, and right now that man is Samoa Joe. He’s been doing this for a very long time and the respect is there, but so is the opportunity to be the best. Then you have the longest-reigning NXT Champion in Finn Bálor, who's shown the world for years what he's made of, so to face him would be great. To wrestle Shinsuke Nakamura, my Twitter nemesis but a well-respected and very charismatic and talented competitor, would also be fun. I would like to see if The Drifter would ever play a few songs for me to dance to, but he’d probably say, “no way,” and a fight would ensue. Then there's a fellow Latino that I'm sure we'll all get to know very well in Manny Andrade. The brother is an international Superstar who's sure to make a splash.
WWE.COM: Lastly, when that bell rings and No Way Jose exits the ring, what do you hope the NXT Universe gets from your performance?
JOSE: At the end of the day, I want to have them vibing to the match, getting down with the moves, getting up and dancing in their space. I love to see the enjoyment in their faces, I love to hear the laughter, and I even want them to roar with anticipation as we take my opponents for a spin on “Fiesta Airlines.” I want them to feel the same vibes I'm giving and know that No Way Jose’s time to shine is now.
Follow No Way Jose on Twitter @WWENoWayJose.