March 18, 2022
Detroit, Michigan, USA
Q. Ultra dangerous guy there. Super explosive, much like yourself. A super dangerous guy. What was the game plan going into that one to get a rematch from last year's final?
DATON FIX: Play the same. We are there about points. Would have liked to score more points. Only put up five points. You know, he is a good competitor. He is a quick -- I kind of feel he was just kind of sitting back waiting for me to take a sloppy shot. He was going to try to run corner, staying back, kind of dropping to his knees. He was just trying to sneak or go behind, steal something late.
Q. Daton, I apologize. You know, obviously, you talked so much about extending scores. What changed for you tonight to kind of extend the score and get the 5-1 victory?
DATON FIX: You know, you're in the national semis. I've been waiting a whole year to get back to national finals to face the guy I have. I'm guessing he won.
Q. He did.
DATON FIX: Yeah, that's the match I've been looking for for about a year now, so it's here tomorrow. It's going to go down. It's been on my mind ever since it took place last time, so you know, wish I would have scored more points, but I can do that tomorrow.
Q. Daton, how many points do you think you have to score tomorrow night? You know how hard he is to score on, and have you watched the video at all from last year's match?
DATON FIX: I just know I need to score more than him, whatever that is. He scores one, I score more than that. If he scores five, I'm going to score more than that. That's the mentality I have.
Yeah, the match from last year, I really feel like I did a good job dictating the pace on our feet and really the entire match. I think I ended up getting three stall calls. Just took a sloppy shot in overtime, and he scored.
Q. I know last year you were really disappointed in your performance here on the finals. You were good all year long until the finals wasn't. The Daton Fix that a lot of people thought they would see or you thought you would perform like, when did something happen in the international scene? Was it when you won the trials to wrestle for the world team that you started to say, I'm back, I'm ready to go and do the things I used to do and have fun doing it?
DATON FIX: Yeah, you know, I took a little time off after the Olympic trials. Obviously, that didn't go how I would have liked it to go either, so I came off two pretty devastating defeats there in about a two-week span, and I just took about a month off and really relied on my faith and the people around me, my family, my girlfriend.
Those people really kind of got me back in the right mindset, and whenever I came back and started training again, I just really liked what I was doing with my training, and I just kind of took what I was doing in the room to the world team trials and wrestled really well there and took me to a world silver medal. Would have liked it to be gold, but I came away with silver. Hopefully I get that one back here as soon as I can as well, but since then, I've just kept up with that same mentality in my training, and I think it's paid off a lot.
Q. Daton, I don't need to tell you how tough the times have been in the Oklahoma State program the last two months, especially to lose to Ferrari. How have you avoided thinking about that and just focusing on yourself?
DATON FIX: It's hard. Especially being I'm a really big team person. Everything I do is not only for me. It's for way more than me. I wouldn't be anything without God, first and foremost, and I do it for him. I do it for my family, my friends, my teammates, my coaches because I know that I wouldn't be who I am without all of them.
It's no fun getting to celebrate by yourself. Having all those people with you and encouraging you and pushing you, it just makes it even sweeter in the end whenever you get to go back and celebrate with them.
Q. I've been bothering you all year about this. I really want you to come back next year. Is there any chance we can get you back next year for another year?
ROMAN BRAVO-YOUNG: I don't know. Maybe I can be convinced, but right now, not worried about that. There's a lot of times and other things that I want to do, but for now just take it step by step, and if I do decide to come back, I'll make that decision later on in the year, but if not, it's a great way to go out. Another NCAA final. It's grateful to be in this position. Like I said, do my part and hopefully get closer to the team title.
Q. Why are you so hard to score on you?
ROMAN BRAVO-YOUNG: I'm not too sure. I was wrestling Gilbert every day. Gilbert helps me quite a bit. He is tough and strong, but I think I just have a lot of defense and just move my feet quite a bit. Other than that, I don't know why.
Q. A couple of good shots, a couple of -- what was the key to converting?
ROMAN BRAVO-YOUNG: That's probably my eighth or ninth time wrestling. It gets harder every time. Like I said, when I got off the mat, I have to thank him. I wouldn't be where I am today without him. He pushes me in different kinds of ways. I'm doing extra workouts and stuff. I knew how to get one takedown, and I just found I away to get that at the end, once again, but, yeah.
Q. Roman, rematch from last year's NCAA final with Daton Fix, obviously he is a world silver medalist and as tough as it gets. Beat him in overtime last year. What do you have to do to repeat the performance, repeat as a national champion, and knock off Daton Fix tomorrow night?
ROMAN BRAVO-YOUNG: Just got to find a way. It's obviously going to be a tough match, and we wrestled before, and I just have to do what I do. Grateful win or lose, but other than that, I'm going to go out there and move my feet and have a good time and enjoy it. You don't get to wrestle in the NCAA finals too often. I'm excited. It's going to be a fun night, and hopefully I'm in the finals along with my teammates.
Q. Congratulations. What's it mean to be a repeat NCAA finalist at least and especially, like he said, against Daton again?
ROMAN BRAVO-YOUNG: It means everything to me, and I don't think -- I don't think a lot of people understand how tough it is and how tough this tournament is. You can see a lot of people go down upset, and not only is it tough wrestling, but the mindsets and roller coaster of emotions. You have to be on point every single match. You can't slip up. It's not easy.
I think I've been undefeated all year, and it's definitely hard when everyone is coming after you. I have to be on every match. I can't get hurt. I have to watch what I eat, diet, and everything. It's definitely a lot in the process, but I'm grateful. I am going to enjoy it. It's not an easy process.
Q. Most guys get pretty intense before their match. You see them getting shaking and running in place and all ready to go. You are skipping around smiling and having a good time. Where does that come from?
ROMAN BRAVO-YOUNG: I like to move my feet and be loose, and you think I said this last year, in ten years, no one is going to remember this, no one cares. They might remember me winning or being in the finals, but other than that, this is all earthly things that really don't matter. Doing the right things and living a good life and inspiring other people. That's all I really care about.
Q. You have had some battles with Austin DeSanto. You touched on it a little bit. This might have been one of the last times you'll wrestle him. When you reflect back on that in match-ups with him, what will you remember the most?
ROMAN BRAVO-YOUNG: Hell of a competitor. Honestly, if that's one person in the bracket or somebody you don't want to wrestle, it's him. He is coming at your face and complete opposite style of me. I like to dance around. He comes at you hard. He is a hell of a competitor, and you know, I'm sorry I had to be the one to beat him, but he had a great career doing whatever he is doing. He inspires me and pushes me. After that dual, I almost lost, and I didn't like the way I wrestled, so I just hit a different gear after that. I really needed him to be where I'm at today.
Q. You kind of touched up on DeSanto, and he is a great wrestler, and no one really wants to wrestle him. I think you have beaten him five times in a row. How do you consistently come out on top?
ROMAN BRAVO-YOUNG: It's hard. It's not my style. It is complete opposite. I know he knows what I do. Found a way to get it done in the end. We got in a crazy scramble. Ran out of bounds a little bit when I was down, but other than that, just found a way. It's not easy, but those big moments, you have to stay calm and poised.
Q. You talked about -- what is Daton Fix's style? What do you expect to see?
ROMAN BRAVO-YOUNG: He is solid. He is strong. Good inside. It's going to be a fun match, and I'm excited for it. Yeah, it's funny, like I said, I've watched him growing up and I have seen him be on all these world teams. I saw him after NCAA's last year and he took second in the world. He is the real deal. That just excites me. I haven't gotten as many chances as he has on the world stage, so this is my stage for now. I hope we go out and put on a show. That's it. Just enjoy it.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports