‘Wild thing’: Aussie tennis champ and ‘troublemaker’ Nick Kyrgios’ surprise guests star in new video podcast series

Good Trouble with Nick Kyrgios

Australian champion tennis player Nick Kyrgios is not part of this year’s Australian Open in Melbourne, but that doesn’t mean he’s out of the game.

In fact, he’s right on centre court.

Three days before the Australia Open, Kyrgios went head-to-head with the World No.1 men’s player, Serbian Novak Djokovic in a special live episode to promote the launch of his new video podcast series, Good Trouble, on January 24.

The often controversial, outspoken Kyrgios is not playing this year due to serious knee and wrist injuries, as well as playing only one match in 14 months and falling off the world rankings list.

Instead, he’s teamed up with US Open champ Naomi Osaka’s story-driven production company, Hana Kuma, to do what he does a lot of, talking the talk, this time with a diverse celebrity guest list.

And they’re all people the 28-year-old spent a lifetime wondering about.

Described by Hana Kuma as a “tennis king, norm challenger and wild thing”, the boy from Canberra who thrilled audiences and rattled opponents in tennis tournaments around the world – think smashing rackets, hugging spectators, hitting under-arm-leg serves – is sitting down with UK foul-mouth chef Gordon Ramsay first up, and later on boxer iron Mike Tyson … just to name a few.

Posting his Djokovic chat on Instagram, Kyrgios explained his reason for the pivot.

” … being injured and not being able to play the sport that has opened all the doors in my life is hard and very challenging.

“Sometimes it’s a struggle to continue to rehab and try and get my body back to the top of the sport … but it’s also given me the chance to start Good Trouble, my talk show that allows me to connect with extraordinary people.

“My goal was always to learn and understand how these people tick, so I could not only better myself but help better other people.

“I still can’t believe a kid from Canberra is able to sit down and talk to these amazing people,” he wrote.

Hana Kuma says the “beloved troublemaker” will explore “the personal journeys of individuals who are making waves by doing things on their own terms”.

“The series takes inspiration from Kyrgios’s own career, marked by his unorthodox style and willingness to defy the norm, and extends that narrative to a broader spectrum of guests.

Kyrgios courtside throughout this year’s AO

Alongside the new highly produced video podcast series, Kyrgios has been snapped up by ESPN and Eurosport for court side commentary and analysis for January’s AO.

He made his US debut during the Tennis Channel’s ATP Finals coverage last November and was widely praised for his insight and candour in the commentary box, writes TennisNow.

Fans stood up and noticed – including former US tennis champ Chris Evert who was “so happy” to listen to his insights – after calling his mate Djokovic’s first-round match win against the 178th-ranked 18-year-old Croat Dino Prizmic.

“Called some really dope matches. Prizmic got GAME. This guy gonna be good for a long time,” wrote Kyrgios afterwards.

“This gonna be a couple fun weeks,” he posted on X (formerly the social media platform, Twitter).

Post-match, Eurosport’s expert Barbara Schett asked Djokovic if he knew who called his game for the first time.

“Nick? NK Rising baby!” he replied, smiling.

“That’s nice. Great to have him around, he’s one of the most popular players in the last five, ten years with what he brings to the game.

“Great guy, we had a fun convo for his podcast. I don’t know if he enjoys four-hour matches. I wish I had his serve in some moments tonight.”

The bromance

The bromance between Kyrgios and Djokovic began during the Joker’s highly controversial deportation from the 2022 AO after the Serbian refused to be vaccinated at the height of the global COVID-19 pandemic.

In a first-person piece in The Age (owned by Nine newspapers), How I learnt to love Novak Djokovic, the greatest of all time, Kyrgios wrote about the decision to support him.

” … we share a realisation that most times that we step onto a court, the crowd either loves us or hates us.

“I sat back throughout that COVID period and watched the world turn on him. I watched our country turn on him.

“I remember thinking to myself that if that was me in his situation, I would love to have someone to help me through it, so I gave him some support.”

Djokovic acknowledged that during his centre court Good Trouble chat on January 12, where the pair sat on chairs covered in swathes of burnt-orange fabric.

“You were one of the very few colleagues on the tour to use his platform, use his voice, to support me (during the deportation) and that is something I will never forget.”

Kyrgios’ centre court chat with the champ will air after the tournament ends, along with another yet-to-be-announced chat.

Some speculate it will be with John McEnroe, who is here for the Nine Network’s hosting team. Others reckon it could be his Special K doubles partner, Thanasi Kokkinakis.

Naomi Osaka joins the chat sessions. Photo: Naomi Osaka x Hana Kuma

Meanwhile, Kyrgios’ selection of guests on his Good Trouble with Nick Kyrgios video podcast kicks off with multi-Michelin-starred chef Ramsay, and will drop a new episode every week.

We’ll be able to watch his interview and chat skills first hand as he then catches up with Emmy Award-winning journalist Jemele Hill and global bestselling author and award-winning podcast host of On Purpose Jay Shetty.

There’s also a couple of tennnis players, the current men’s top 25 tennis player Frances Tiafoe and four-time Grand Slam champion Osaka.

Then we’ll hear from Emmy Award-nominated actor-comedian Rainn Wilson, serial entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk, and lastly, boxing legend, tennis fan and recreational player Tyson.

Good Trouble will be available on Hana Kuma’s YouTube channel and on all podcast platforms from January 24

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