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Monday, June 11, 2012
2012 Real Street: Nick Merlino

By Mike Sinclair
XGames.com

While in Los Angeles, Nick Merlino varial heelflips over a sidewalk gap. Real Street »

Where do I start with Nick Merlino? Nick is completely insane, he's one of the gnarliest guys I've ever seen ride a skateboard and he has more energy than anyone else in the van. Nick makes skating look so easy and he's usually jumping down some of the biggest stuff around. He's also 100% confident in his bag of tricks and he knows what he can do -- I've never seen him nervous. Nick's just doing what he loves -- skateboarding -- and he does it with a New Jersey attitude. Love him or hate him, Nick Merlino always impresses and is betting on your VOTE!

ESPN.com: How's it going Nick?
Nick: It's going good -- it's going awesome!

Any skating going on today?
Yeah, I never stop. I just skated this picnic table down the street.

Nick Merlino.

How's your ankle?
It's feeling really good now. I say another two weeks and I should be back to 100%.

What happened to you ankle exactly?
I was in Tallahassee, Fla. on a Dekline trip and I was trying to grind this twenty-two stair rail we found. I was going to try to run the steps out but my foot slid forward on a stair, I rolled it and it popped really bad. That took me out and ended my filming for Real Street pretty early on.

Since you were injured, how much time did you film for Real Street?
Probably two weeks but I had some stuff that I was sitting on since "WTF!" dropped.

Did you put anything different in this part than your "WTF!" part?
I tried to switch up my tricks a little but I try to stick to the stuff that's the most comfortable to me.

Do you prefer High Definition footage or Standard Definition footage more?
I like the VX Mark 1, Standard Def a lot more.

Do you think Standard Definition is done after this year?
It kind of looks that way but I hope not. I don't back HD at all but that's what most companies are moving towards.

Nick Merlino kickflip frontside board slides a rail in Phoenix, Ariz.

Your entire Real Street part is in HD.
We'll that's why my part sucks then -- I blame HD!

What would you do with 100k if you won Real Street and the Fan Favorite vote?
Realistically, I'd give half to my dad to save it for me, spend a bit and save some for taxes. I suck at saving money.

Who are you voting for this year?
I like Joey Pepper, he's tight. He's East Coast and skates rugged East Coast spots -- that's what I like to skate. I'll vote for him and Matt Bennett.

Who will win?
I think I'm gonna win. You gotta think big!

Will we see you in the World Series of Poker if you win?
I was actually thinking about that, if I won a ton of money, I would see if I could enter for sure.

Any advice for someone filming a Real Street part?
Yeah, don't blow it like me!