David on ‘The Challenge: USA’ Exit: ‘I Gave It Everything’

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    David on ‘The Challenge: USA’ Exit: ‘I Gave It Everything’

    The Challenge: USA brought out another classic elimination for the penultimate episode of the season: Balls In. And by the end of it, both players — Big Brother‘s David Alexander and Enzo Palumbo were exhausted.

    Yes, the friends faced off, despite Alexander, who lost the daily, trying to appeal to the daily’s winners Big Brother‘s Angela Rummans and Survivor‘s Ben Driebergen to send in Survivor‘s Tyson Apostol or Domenick Abbate. And in the end, it was Alexander who was eliminated.

    Alexander opens up about that elimination, why he wants to do another season, and more.

    There seemed to be a real division in the house, with you and Enzo separate from the others. How were you feeling about your standing?

    David Alexander: I didn’t feel that huge alliance. I know that Alyssa wasn’t as strong with me because I sent Derek home. She was really, really, really, really, really, really upset at that. And I think she probably held a grudge to that and didn’t really care. But at the same time no, I didn’t feel [that].

    Looking at that daily, is there anything you think you could have done differently? You and Tyson were first, so you had nothing to go off of.

    Yeah. We were literally just winging it and I think we might have gotten just as far as each other. It sucked going first. That was really probably the worst challenge that we had all season to go first on because you literally choose how you’re gonna play it before you even get the chance to play it. So you can’t change the strategy in the middle of it. You get three minutes to try to get as far as you can. If this was something different, I think I would’ve been talking to you next week, not now and been running the TJ’s final. It would’ve been so dope.

    David Alexander in The Challenge: USA

    Jonne Roriz, courtesy of Paramount

    Is there anything you could have done to keep Ben and Angela from throwing in Enzo or at least consider what you said about wanting to go against Dom or Tyson?

    No. Angela and Tyson were [tight] from day one. Me and Angela were pretty cool, but as the game went on and I think the perception of myself not being that good — even though I did challenge that a few times by winning — obviously from last night’s episode, people still felt that same way… So I don’t know if there’s anything I could have done. That’s why when I was frustrated, I just walked away because I’m just like, there’s no going back on this. They already told me and Enzo. You don’t go and tell these people unless you’re really up to something and it’s too late in the game to really surprise somebody at this point. So it sucks.

    How’d you feel going against Enzo?

    It sucked because it was BB choosing to put two BB people against each other and to get so close to the end, you would think like Survivor did — Survivor put their differences aside. Sarah, Tyson, and Ben have so much more animosity amongst each other than anybody, but they literally put their differences aside when it came to playing strategy to get further. So it just hurt.

    Enzo Palumbo and David Alexander in The Challenge: USA

    Jonne Roriz, courtesy of Paramount

    If I get a chance to play again, I’m gonna remember how strategy is ultimately the most important thing, not relationships. Who knows what the future holds on this show, but I think it’d be interesting if I see some familiar faces and how they play and how they doubted me. I hope y’all been paying attention. I’ve been training this summer, if there’s a chance to play this thing again, and I’m not gonna be nice David. No, that’s done. F**k that. There’s money on the line. I could help my mom if I win this type of game. There’s certain things that this can give me an opportunity with and now that I’m keeping that in mind, if I play this again, it’d be a different [game].

    It seemed like Big Brother was the show that really fell apart in terms of like a show alliance first.

    Yeah, because people hold grudges. People play for TV moments. They wanna take the big shots. “Hey, I’m on The Challenge. Look what I did. I got somebody back for winning their show, right?” The Xavier situation. Ultimately it wasn’t strategy. It was people playing into the emotions instead of thinking strategically. But it is a tough game. Big Brother fell apart. Just from the last episode, we could see the influence of Survivor. I wish we had more BB people. But I was the second to last BB out. I could have been in the final. Oof. Just thinking about it, just … so close.

    David Alexander and Enzo Palumbo in The Challenge: USA

    Jonne Roriz, courtesy of Paramount

    You did get to do that classic Challenge elimination, which looked so exhausting. You scored first, but by the fifth round, it looked like you were just both gassed out completely. Is that why you tried to just throw the ball in?

    Oh yeah, that was completely exhausting. If exhaustion’s here [holds hand up], I was a level above exhaustion. I had nothing left. Even after I tried to throw it in, I think I couldn’t even defend against him after that. It was, to this date, the most exhausting thing I have ever done.

    Yeah, you didn’t get up right away.

    I couldn’t get up. I tried. Even before I came out to congratulate Enzo, I had to be behind the tent for like 20 minutes just to catch my breath. I was throwing up. That’s why I’ve been training so hard this summer. That feeling alone of being so close to something and something I think I could have won, should have won, had the advantages in, and to lose, it eats at me still a little bit.

    Do you think you would’ve been able to beat Tyson if you had gone against him like you wanted?

    Yeah. At that point, Tyson hadn’t done anything physical, never been in an elimination, never faced moments to go home, and honestly anytime Tyson wasn’t winning and he had a risk of being thrown in elimination, he would walk around set, kicking rocks.

    David Alexander and Enzo Palumbo in The Challenge: USA

    Jonne Roriz, courtesy of Paramount

    What’s something we didn’t see that viewers should know about?

    Early on in the season, I got lit one night and I had this alternate ego that we almost ran with, Jamal. He was a flirt. He was having a good time, dancing. But then when Cashel and Tiffany got thrown in, I was hungover like they were. When that happened, I was like, no more drinking. I am done having good times. I can have a good time without getting wasted. So that was a little behind the scenes — Jamal was gonna be this character that I just completely shut down because I wanted to win.

    You talked about coming back, so you would do another season.

    I would gladly do another season. I’m hoping I can see something familiar faces so I can get some motivation.

    Would you want move over to the MTV version or stick with CBS shows?

    I do like CBS. I like that it’s something new we’re all experiencing for the first time, so I’m not going against somebody who is established and knows all of how it works. You do it so much you kind of get a cadence or rhythm to it, like running. … And I would love to see some of these same faces because I want some payback.

    Enzo Palumbo and David Alexander in The Challenge: USA

    Jonne Roriz, courtesy of Paramount

    How would you train differently for it?

    I would actually work out. This is what I’m doing this summer: training, physically preparing, doing stuff I’m afraid of, swimming. I will toot my horn. I went into this thing not the most prepared. I literally quit my job two weeks before I went into the thing. Got my passport a month before they flew us out. Wasn’t in my best shape because I’m working all the time. So I walked in, not as an athlete, but as an employee at a company and I was just like, alright, let me see if I can do this. And I got better and in better shape as the season went on because I trained a s**t ton at the compound. But if this version of myself got a chance to play it again, it would be a different game by far.

    Do you think this season’s version of you would’ve been ready for the final if you’d made it?

    Yeah. Because I know ultimately my strongest asset throughout the entire season was my mentality. I knew people were doubting me throughout the entire season. I felt it and I got to watch it and see it. But guess what? All the people that were doubting me throughout it, I got to see them go home. This is something I’ve kind of had a chip on my shoulder about, especially in my reality show experience, but I knew that every single challenge, there is a physical aspect — I do CrossFit, I wasn’t in my best shape, but I had the foundation — but it came to the mentality. Are you afraid? Can you stay calm under pressure? All these different things, which I showed a consistent level of being able to do. I knew the final would touch you mentally, physically, and emotionally. And I felt like not everybody there had it to get to the end. I’m curious to see if and how many people quit next week.

    Is there something that could have made you quit?

    I wouldn’t have quit. To get that close to helping my family, how could I give up? Somebody can beat me. Enzo did beat me. And I did not quit. I know 100 percent I did not quit. That’s why I can sit here with a smile and say I gave it everything and I’m OK with that. Given an opportunity to just cross a finish line, all I have to do is keep going? I would’ve got there.

    The Challenge: USA, Wednesdays, 9/8c, CBS

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