heavy machinery
Photo Credit: Bill Pritchard

Levi Cooper: My Bond With Otis Was ‘Apparent Pretty Quickly,’ Events In WWE Won’t Ever Affect Our Brotherhood

Levi Cooper recently spoke with WrestleZone about his professional wrestling career, including how he started teaming with Otis in NXT. Cooper (known then as Tucker Knight) started teaming with Otis (aka Otis Dozovic and Niko Bogojevic) in August 2016 and soon after took on the name “Heavy Machinery.”

The team would soon become one of WWE’s most popular acts. Despite having other partners in NXT (Tucker teamed with Elias, and was part of the ‘Shoot Nation’ stable early on), Heavy Machinery seemed to click right away in an organic way. Asked about building chemistry with Otis so quickly, Cooper said it was obvious from the start that they worked well together, and it’s developed into a friendship that is still strong today.

“It became apparent pretty quickly, to me, anyways that we had something there that we could work out. There was just a foundational level of understanding between the two of us. He grew up in Superior, Wisconsin, I grew up in Hubbard, Oregon, both kind of middle class, blue-collar, small-town type of upbringings. On top of that, we were both highly successful amateur wrestling heavyweights. Being a successful amateur wrestler, that’s like one blanket but heavyweights fall under a different category, we’re a little different than other amateur wrestlers. We didn’t have to cut weight so we were always happy and not miserable, spitting in a cup or whatever. [We’re] eating burgers, enjoying our lives and beating people up. So, I think because both of us kind of already had those two things, what’s understood doesn’t have to be said or talked about,” he explained. “So it was like ‘hey, I know what you did, you know what I did’ and we’re not gonna measure dicks here or nothing, we’re on the same team, let’s get it on.

Cooper said he also developed an older brother-like bond with Otis, explaining that he always felt protective of his teammate in the same way he looks out for his own brother. He said that his friendship with Otis is still going strong today, and those were some of the reasons they gelled with each other.

“We still talk every week,” he noted. “We have a very deep friendship and the things that happened inside of WWE cannot and will not ever have an effect on our relationship or our brotherhood. So, I think it was that kind of foundational level and understanding that we had with each other and we had a bond because of these things.”

Read More: Levi Cooper Had An Idea For A ‘Country Club Assh-le’ Gimmick In WWE, Now Focusing On Amateur Wrestling Background