NDA: Dustin, tell us a bit about yourself—where you grew up and live now…and your family. Besides work (and darts) any hobbies or interests?
DUSTIN: Well I’m from Bloomington Illinois. Was born and raised around the area. Grew up here in the city and surrounding small towns. Got an awesome 11 year old son. I play drums in a band. Love to travel and go fishing.
NDA: What do you do for work?
DUSTIN: I deliver car accessories for GM.
NDA: How and when did you start playing darts?
DUSTIN: Well started playing darts after softball games with my friends. We’d go play our softball games, go to the bar, throw darts and have some beverages. Then started playing leagues and tourneys out of my uncle’s bar. Been playing 11 years or so. Don’t really remember when I started lol
NDA: At what point did you realize you were good and could compete at the top level of the sport?
DUSTIN: Honestly it took awhile before I realized I belonged playing at a high level. It was NDA Vegas years ago that Randy (aka Big Dog) got done beating me and gave me a lecture telling me to step up and I need to realize I belong in the top level.
NDA: How often do you play now?
DUSTIN: Right now not playing much since everything is shutdown. Before everything happened I’d plays tourneys on the weekends and travel for tourneys and that’s about it.
NDA: What’s your practice routine like? Does it change much or is it pretty regimented?
DUSTIN: What’s practice? Lol To be honest local tourneys are my practice. I really don’t practice or have any routine. I really need to start one though.
NDA: Who is your dart league operator/coordinator and what’s the main value they bring to the table?
DUSTIN: JJ Ventures Is my operator. They offer great opportunities. Anywhere between getting us sanctioned for NDA to running their own tournament weekend (prp wknd) to running tourneys to win trips to Europe. They really have a lot to offer dart players around the state.
NDA: As an elite player, what’s the coolest thing you have gotten to experience as a dart player?
DUSTIN: Oh man. I’ve gotten to experience a lot of amazing things. Got to travel to Spain and play on Team USA, got to travel to Malaysia to compete on Team USA, and when I was supposed to be on Team USA at NDA and Spain (Radikal) this year in April, but they were cancelled. This game has allowed me to travel around the world and compete against the best dart players in the world.
NDA: What do you like most about darts?
DUSTIN: I always say the best part about this sport is the people you meet. I’ve met a lot of amazing people all around the world. Getting to travel around the states and world is truly a blessing as well.
NDA: What advice would (or do) you give to new/novice dart players?
DUSTIN: Do what I don’t, PRACTICE. Lol. You have to practice. Be humble. Show respect towards other players. Be a good sportsman, don’t be sore loser. You win some, and you lose some. Remember, there will always be another tourney. We always want to do our best and want to win, but it doesn’t always work in our favor.
NDA: If you could pick one person you’d like to play a game of darts with, who would it be and why? (It doesn’t have to be a dart player…it can be anyone!)
DUSTIN: That’s a tough one. There’s so many. Lol Peter Wright I’ve always wanted to meet. I think I’d choose him. He seems like a great guy and great ambassador to the sport.
NDA: As a veteran of attending and playing at Team Dart, how does it rate among the dart events you participate in?
DUSTIN: Team Dart is one of the most competitive tourneys I attend. Being an international event, it brings a lot of great talent from overseas. Germany being one of the countries. They always bring over some of the best. Always tough against them. But there’s a lot of great talent that attend that event.
NDA: What have you been doing to get through these challenging times? What is your typical day like?
DUSTIN: I work and come home and sit and watch movies. Really miss being out playing darts and hanging out with friends. Cannot wait til this passes and we can be out with our dart family again.
NDA: What is your favorite…
…Movie: oh man I have too many. Anything with Chris Farley
…Music or band: I listen to almost anything. Country and Rock mostly
…Food: Toss up between steak and shrimp maybe equal. lol
…TV show: Manifest
…Thing to do in Vegas (besides playing darts!): Hang out with friends on the strip. And enjoy a nice cold Fat Tuesday beverage. Lol I don’t drink much, as a lot of people know, but I enjoy those drinks. Sight see of course. There is so much to do and see out there. I love traveling to Vegas.
NDA: Anything else to add?
DUSTIN: I would like to add that I want to thank all my family and friends for all the support. I never thought this game would take me to do things that I’ve been able to do. I also want to thank you guys for everything you do to provide us dart players with an amazing tournament. It accommodates different levels of play for dart players. I always tell dart players this is the tournament to attend because it gives you the experience of a bigger tourney, playing against your level of play. I also want to shout out to all my sponsors Dartbrokers, Impulse Sports Apparel, Shot Darts, and The Shot Spot. There have been some other sponsorship ideas in the works before all this shutdown stuff happened. Again thank you again for everything and having me do this. Can’t wait to get out and see the dart family again.
Published May 11,2020