TJ Lavin has been a constant over many seasons of The Challenge, and that made it a no-brainer that he’d also host spinoffs that arrived for the MTV franchise.
That started with All Stars on Paramount Plus and continued with CBS’ The Challenge: USA, which featured American reality TV stars from CBS.
More recently, he’s the main host of The Challenge: World Championship, a global competition spinoff featuring MTV Legends and MVPs from the international spinoff shows.
He recently sat down to talk to longtime castmate Johnny Bananas about the spinoff season which they filmed in Capetown, South Africa.
During the chat, TJ revealed which of the MVP competitors he was most impressed by when he saw them in the challenges or eliminations.
This report may contain minor spoilers from The Challenge: World Championship’s first two episodes.
TJ Lavin impressed by several MVPs in The Challenge: World Championship
During the Death, Taxes, and Bananas podcast, the seven-time champion asked his guest TJ about The Challenge: World Championship MVPs and if any were surprises in terms of their abilities. TJ was quick to praise two individuals.
“Yeah, Troy was a very big shocker to me,” TJ said during the podcast episode, speaking of The Challenge: Australia’s Troy Cullen.
TJ also said that the show’s producer Sky told him that he’d like Troy because he was a “bad-a**,” and TJ admitted she was right.
Troy, a former Australian Ninja Warrior competitor, was one of the two winners of Australia’s spinoff season, alongside Bachelor Australia star Kiki Morris.
However, another competitor stood out quite a bit to TJ, and that was The Challenge: UK’s Zara Zoffany.
TJ said it was during the first few challenges of the season that he noticed Zara’s impressive abilities when it came to running.
“I was like, ‘Yeah right, lady, like you think you’re going to run like that for how long we’re doing this?'” TJ said.
“And then sure as s**t, she goes and does her thing, and they cook, then some sprinting, and she’s just passing everyone. I’m like, yes, girl is amazing.”
“Like she’s amazing, and I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw her running like that Sprint, that fast that far for that long, and just killed it,” TJ shared.
In addition to those individuals, TJ praised Kiki and Grant Crapp but then said most of the international cast defied his expectations.
“I was impressed with all the ladies on this season. You know, everybody every, you know, what? The men too, like, all of them were killing it,” he said on Bananas’ podcast.
TJ reveals which ‘quitter’ he’d give a second chance on The Challenge
The focus turned from the World Championship spinoff to fan questions, with Bananas saying one fan wanted to know which of the quitters over the years of The Challenge TJ would give a second chance to.
“Probably Jay [Gotti],” TJ said without hesitation, adding, “I mean, Jay is like he’s a nice kid.”
TJ went on to say he made up his favorite “Take care. Hope to see you never” phrase on Jay.
Jay, who debuted on The Real World: Skeletons, was part of The Challenge: Battle of the Exes II season, where he teamed up with his ex Jenna Compono.
While TJ said that’s where his famous phrase came from, it actually seemed to originate during a different season and moment.
Early on during The Challenge: Rivals III season, Brandon Tinde opted to quit due to having trouble being away from his girlfriend. That meant Brandon’s partner, Briana LaCuesta, was also automatically done for the season.
“I don’t even remember the kid’s name, but he quit because he missed his girlfriend in Mexico, and that was where the phrase, ‘All right cool, don’t take care. Hope to see you never,’ came [about],” he shared during a Challenge YouTube video.
Based on TJ’s comments, it seems like none of The Challenge: World Championship MVPs are quitters, and also that he would be fine with Jay returning to another season of The Challenge.
The Challenge: World Championship episodes arrive Wednesdays on Paramount Plus.