When 15-year-old Jarrius Robertson took the stage in his dapper, custom suit and dark shades to accept the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance at the ESPY Awards on Wednesday, the charming young man stole the show.
After his inspirational acceptance speech, ET’s Nischelle Turner caught up with Robertson — a football, basketball and wrestling superfan who has been battling a rare, chronic liver disease called biliary atresia since he was born, and has undergone numerous surgeries over his short life — who opened up about what it meant to win the prestigious honor.
“It means a lot, because I know I’m inspiring everybody all over the world,” he shared.
Robertson was joined backstage by WWE star John Cena, who also presented him with the honor, and the 40-year-old wrestler opened up about what he finds so special about Robertson, pointing to his “character and personality, but moreover his fighting spirit. It’s admirable.”
While walking the red carpet together, the two couldn’t have had a better time posing for photos and goofing around like close friends.
However, Robertson made it very clear that he was absolutely sure he could woo Cena’s fiancé, Nikki Bella, away from him. When asked if he could steal the WWE diva’s heart, Robertson quipped, “Yeah, pretty much.”
“And I thank you for being gracious enough not to do that,” Cena replied, laughing.
While Cena and Bella looked beautiful together at the event, the wrestler said it really wasn’t a date night — at Robertson’s hilarious insistence.
“I’m here to be his muscle and protect him,” Cena explained. “That’s why we’re here.”