WWE NXT UK Superstar Ilja Dragunov recently spoke with talkSPORT and said he thinks he's starting to really connect with the WWE fans. Dragunov was asked if he feels like the connections are happening as he seems to be one of the most popular Superstars on the NXT UK brand right now.
"I think so, I think so. I have a very different style to a lot of other performers," Dragunov said.d "It's very expressive, kind of different and it's not always easy to get into it, but I think the passion I express, my style and my drive, sure.
It's slowly connecting with the people. I love to see them doing the orchestra with me, feeling the passion I'm going through. It's a very nice experience for me and yeah, I feel like I'm more connected to the people."
WWE Hall of Famers Triple H and Shawn Michaels both praise the NXT UK brand often, and Triple H was said to be "obsessed" with Dragunov in one report. Michaels is basically running the NXT UK brand these days and Triple H has called it a passion project for The Heartbreak Kid. Dragunov was asked how glad he is that he made the choice to join WWE to work with Michaels and Triple H, considering how he had a lot of options before signing the WWE deal.
"I get the feeling people understand me and that's very important to me, it's why I love my work here so much," he said. "They understand what I'm doing without really telling them a lot. And in WWE, I've seen absolute professionals on a whole new level that I've never seen before, I don't regret a single day that I'm here."
Unbesiegbar continued with the praise for WWE when asked what it's like working so closely with top talents like Michaels and Triple H. "Yeah, what can I say?! Of course, it's learning from the best. It's just stuff you can't imagine when you're getting into it [professional wrestling]. It's a completely new horizon for me and I know things I never thought I'd know and I see them from a different perspective. I've grown as a performer every single day. This is the most exciting time in my life," he said.
The 26 year old Russian signed with WWE in February 2019 after a successful international run. Regarding potential European dream matches he'd like to have in WWE, Dragunov said he'd like to face RAW Superstar Aleister Black of The Netherlands.
"There's a lot of names. I think when it comes down to European names, guys like Aleister Black, who I knew before his time in WWE. I think we would connect very well and that's a fight people would want to see, maybe," Dragunov said.
Fans have been looking forward to a NXT UK Title run for the intense Dragunov since he signed with the company. He was asked if it's time for a feud with current NXT UK Champion WALTER.
"I think every person here on this brand is looking forward to facing the biggest star on the brand, which is obviously the champion," Dragunov said. "I have great history with WALTER and I love those big fight feels. Like, the matches that feel like fights and wars, everything that is raised out of brutality and passion. At some certain point of time, it needs to happen."
For those who missed it, Dragunov entered the main event scene at the weekend NXT UK TV tapings in Coventry, England, where this interview was recorded. You can click here for the spoilers (day 1, day 2), which include news on Dragunov's next move.