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Amir Malik on his first trip to the National Finals: ‘I just want my shot to shine.’

He did great during season 12. But he wants more.

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Elizabeth Morris/NBC

“Definitely slow. I was taking my time.”

That’s not exactly how we’d describe Amir Malik’s American Ninja Warrior Semifinals run. He completed the extended course on the second night of the Semifinals in just over five minutes, finishing fifth overall for the night.

“Definitely being more cautious than I usually would. But I just wanted to clear. I wanted to hit that buzzer and get redemption on the Spider Trap. I’m just glad that I got that.”

Amir’s reference to the Spider Trap is a call back to season 12. In that year’s Semifinals, Amir was just feet from the buzzer, pushing up the last set of doors on the Spider Trap, when his footing gave way and he fell short of the accomplishment. This time around, Amir would do anything to avoid that.

Elizabeth Morris/NBC

“It (hitting the Semifinals buzzer) gave me a lot of motivation, and also a lot of stress relief. I feel like if I wouldn’t have (cleared), it would have put more pressure on me to do better. Coming into Vegas, the mindset is to go out there and have fun. But I think I’m going to really enjoy this big stage to the fullest.”

Amir was season 12’s top rookie. He was the only first-time competitor to make it to the final eight and the Power Tower Playoffs. But he still feels like there’s more left to prove. By debuting on the abbreviated 2020 season, he wasn’t able to take on the iconic Las Vegas National Finals.

“I would expect myself to make it to Stage Three. If I don’t make it, I’ll obviously be upset, but my one goal was to hit that (Semifinals) buzzer. Everything is just extra at this point.

Compared to last year, I feel like this is the true test. All of the big cities. This is where the real Ninjas shine. I just want my shot to shine.”

Amir will get his shot when American Ninja Warrior moves on to the National Finals in a few more weeks!