Clint Johnson of ac: Dallas
Interview by Te’Shawn Crenshaw for Splat Life Media
Splatlife: Clint, how have you been lately? You and the team are looking solid at your practices. What are your predictions for Cleveland?
Clint: Been great man, reading books, cooking meals, and staying on top of my personal goals. As a team we’ve got a good feeling about Cleveland. Last event we didn’t show our true colors so we’re anxious to show up at this event with more focus and preparation in our back pocket. With that being said we will be a Sunday club team, and we want to progress still, by beating our 3rd place finish at Dallas
Splatlife: Nice, I agree you guys have a lot more to show of your potential. So what’s practice looking like for the upcoming weekend, who will you play against?
Clint: I’m not entirely sure, word on the street is we’re practicing X-factor. If that’s the case I believe it will add to our fire for the event. We’ve been practicing our semi pro team, “diesel” however that’s only going to get us so far. Preparation is crucial for success and practicing X-factor instead of another weekend with our “diesel” guys will be more beneficial for ac:Dallas.
Splatlife: Makes sense. How’s ac:Diesel doing? What do you feel the advantage is over them and do you think some of the players could be playing pro right now? Name drop if you want (laughs).
Clint: Diesel is improving each practice as a whole, they’re in a situation where players are coming and going which makes it hard to stay consistent. However there is a ton of talent on that team. I could definitely see Jesse Stephens or Shon Saucedo playing on the pro squad in the future.
Splatlife: Why do you think new players come and go on that team? It’s a good organization as a whole.
Clint: People have real lives that sometimes interfere with paintball. Whether it be work, family, personal, or what have you. Things come up unexpected all the time, and we do our best to work with the players on that matter. The organization is a great one, we’re constantly challenged and that’s what makes our team grow.
Splatlife: Speaking of real life, what is a day in the life like for you?
Clint: Typically mon-fri I wake up at 7am and eat breakfast. Then head straight to the gym and train for 60-90 min depending on the lift. Following that I go to work from 10am-8pm. After I get home from work I work on my own business for a few hours that is currently in the works. Then Saturday and Sunday I’m typically at practice in either Austin or Dallas with the rest of the squad.
Splatlife: For those that don’t know, it’s not uncommon for a paintball player to work this hard. What is your voice of reason to keep that daily routine and what do you do that allows you to work so long?
Clint: Life is about consistency, practice must be consistent as well as workouts. Staying healthy and in shape has always been a major goal of mine. As far as work goes, I’m a marketing director for the supplement industry. I spend many hours at our location and fitness centers. Then, on the side I’m working on a program that generates revenue through numerous programs and websites. It’s not uncommon for me to go to bed late and wake up early. It’s all part of the grind, and the grind will continue.
Splatlife: That’s awesome man, I admire the hustle! Was this what was part of the motivation to make you want to play pro?
Clint: Paintball like any other professional sport, teaches you life lessons. I stuck with paintball because it was a challenge every time I played. There was always a grind and if you made a mistake you paid dearly for it. That’s definitely what kept me in the game and what made me chase the dream of playing pro. The challenge, it’s what keeps you going. Paintball was also an outlet for me to travel and experience things that I would have never seen if it wasn’t for this sport. So that I’m grateful for.
Splatlife: Within paintball or not, who influences you the most?
Clint: Mark Johnson hands down, this is a guy who has watched me play as a rookie at the local field, to playing alongside of me at the pro level. He has helped me mentally and financially since 2011 and I couldn’t thank him enough. Mark has guided me throughout the years and has drilled knowledge and wisdom into my tiny little brain. I’ve spent countless hours with him on the field, driving to practices, and flying to events and I truly enjoy every second I’m with him. He’s my right hand man and he taught me how to “ride with dale”.
Splatlife: So since you both have the last name “Johnson” is he your actual dad or has he just played that role? I’ve been confused forever.
Clint: To be honest i was separated at birth with a few other johnsons. Rare, I know. Took me months to get a birth certificate. Mark hasn’t claimed me as his just yet, however we are still waiting on the test results to see who my dad really is. I believe our episode on jerry springer is coming out this fall.
Splatlife: Well said, well said (laughs)! Any significant moments you remember in your paintball career? Words of wisdom or a play that happened?
Clint: A Significant moment would definitely be at this past years NXL Dallas. We played Dynasty in an insane preliminary match. They ended up coming back at the end and sending the match into overtime. As we walked on to to field to play the overtime pointe the crowd was chanting,
“AC! AC! AC!”
Man oh man that got me hyped, here we were playing the best team in the world and the crowd was cheering for us. Next thing you know we win the point and beat dynasty. I played lights out and I’ll never forget that match against dynasty.
Splatlife: From what you learned from the course of your career up to this moment, what would you tell a kid that wants to work their way to professional paintball?
Clint: Don’t let things distract you from your goals. There will be sacrifices made, and if you truly want to go pro the decision is yours. I’ve missed school, work, birthdays, weddings, funerals, graduations, and so on. But i don’t regret it for one second, because going pro was my goal and here I am.
Splatlife: Thanks for doing this interview with me man! Is there anyone you’d like to shout out or thank before we close?
Clint: Man there’s been so much support from so many people i don’t even know where to start. Definitely everyone in the Ac program, my family and friends, and of course all of our sponsors. Without these people the dream would’ve just been a dream.