"Working for it. It's what got me here, it's what's going to keep me here. It's what's going to take us, where we need to go."
-Nate Robinson, New York Knicks
Working for it has been a crucial recipe for success in any sport.
Hard work always outworks talent, if talent doesn't work hard. It's the will of the man, not the skill of the man.
Subscribing to a workaday rigorous sweat-inducing regimen has paid dividends for Beach Tennis USA's Marty Salokas, known to the burgeoning beach culture as "Kodiak."
The Hermosa Beach, Ca., native hustles first, asks questions laster.
He keeps his eyes on the prize, buying into the hardnosed ideology that the national championship is essentially won during the off-season.
You get what you put in.
After last year's flameout, Salokas and his partner, aging superstar Donnie Young, will look to right the ship. They are serious about stifling Team Italy's attempt at a threepeat.
Salokas has added some juice to the lopsided rivalry this season, guaranteeing victory.
"Mark my words...The italians will go down this year by our hands," Salokas recently stated in a blog post.
"We want to win the National Title this year and we will be happy with nothing less. We fear no team."
After hoisting the championship trophy at the prestigious San Diego Smash, Salokas has some time to rest before trekking up to Long Beach, Ca.
Don't expect him to rest on his laurels.
"We can get back into our rigorous schedule," explained Kodiak.
"We’re talking early morning running in the sand, sets and sets of stairs, hours in the gym, and the toughest of all…sitting on the beach, relaxing and playing the game we love."
Salokas continued, "We play this game for the love of the sport and our love to fight and win. My partner, Donny Young, has really helped me grow."