sPidA: Your coming off a great win on your MMA debut, was a submission your game plan or were you just prepared where ever it went?
Guerrero:For my debut i was ready for anything, i just wanted to make the fight entertaining for the fans and for everyone that came out to support me. This was my debut, i had been waiting for this moment for years so i didnt want to lose my first fight. When i got to the venue i was thinking i would be neverous walking to the cage but i was mentally and physically prepared, i was not nervous at all and i was very calm during my fight. It was just the right time to do work.
sPidA: You representing a great fight team, what guys do you have out there pushing you to reach your limits?
Guerrero: Man Full Contact Fight Academy is full of talent. We have guys like Hector Munoz, Roger Narvaez,Cory Bellino,and Josh Rios to name a few. These guys push me to the limit and they do not take it easy on me lol, at the same time they help alot. I am greatful to be part of such a great team and although the Flick brothers are not in town anymore , they too helped me so much. My jiu jitsu coach Aurelio Gallegos also has alot to do with us being well versed in the ground game.
sPidA : Has competing in MMA been in the works or was seeing your training partners compete just motivate you to do so?
Guerrero: To be honest i have been training MMA since 2007 and i was supposed to make my debut a few years back but things just kept on happening, then in 2009 i herniated 2 discs and that just set me back even further. I was so depressed that i couldnt train or do anything but be in pain. My doctor told me that i was never going to train or be the same again and i was determined to prove him and everyone else that said i wouldnt train again wrong. So i did alot of research and found a book online from a Dr. who specailized in spinal injuries. I bought that and followed his directions and i also found a local chiropracter who had a drx – 9000 (spinal decompression machine) and nearly a year later i was back at it.
sPidA: You’ve been to Cowboys Dance Hall before making your debut, what are your thoughts on the place, enjoy yourself there as a fan?
Guerrero: Cowboys Dance Hall is a great place for MMA! So many fans come out to not only support their local mma fighter but the sport of mma and that is awsome.They also advertise pretty well, facebook, the radio etc. so they are pretty popular. As a fan of MMA myself I enjoy watching the fights, Jen does a awsome job of match making and that makes for some exciting fights.
spidA: I know your Team trains in all aspects of the fight game, is there one your better at(strking/grappling) are you still improving both?
Guerrero: I am still improving on both. I love the stand up game and my jiu jitsu is good. our jiu jitsu program run by Aurelio Gallegos is one of the best in Texas. We have 3 BJJ Black Belts in one place and so many technical jiu jitsu guys so our ground game is no joke. Our stand up is second to non, Hector Munoz has very technical kickboxing and im eager to get to the level he is at. I just need to let my hands go on this next fight and thats what we are working on. My hands are good, i have been boxing since 2001 but soon enough i will show what my hands are like, and with kicks being involved its just even better because i love to throw combos that end with kicks.
sPidA: With promotions like M1 Global,BELLATOR and the UFC are you setting your goals to reach these promtotions?
Guerrero: I would love to fight for anyone of those promotions. Bellator puts on some awsome fights and the possibility of fighting for them is more realistic since they travel alot and have come to our area a few times. Id also like to fight in Japan, But of course the UFC is the main one. Im far from it but i will do my best to get there.
sPidA: What was the first live MMA bout you had seen, do you remember your thoughts on watching it live?
Guerrero: My first live event was one of the Renegade Extreme Fighting fights back in the day. A family friend from my home town of Alice, Texas would fight and i got to go with him and I got to be back stage. I also had my seconds license at 17 so being around the fighters and guys like Rocky Long and Carlo Prater who were very friendly got me hooked! Just to see the fighters before their fight, during and after was just like wow, these guys just put it all out there, i couldnt wait to get my turn. Oh and i got to meet my favortie fighter Yves Edwards at one of the Renegade Events in Houston that was a great night lol
sPidA: When not training, whats a chill day for you? (unwind,TV, Flying a kite ,<~kidding)
Guerrero: I am a huge History buff so i like to read up on history when ever i can. I also work in the I.T field so dealing with new technology is common so i like to read up and learn about how things work and how i can become a better I. T Professional. I also like to watch Ghost Adventures and Nat Geo and i cant forget playing Xbox live, That is always fun. But most importantly Im really close to my family, so when im not training i like to spend as much time as i can with them. I work 8-5, then go home to get my things and head to Corpus by 5:30. It takes me about 45 min to get to the gym so if they are home after 5 i get to see them briefly but usually they are not and by the time i get home from training my mom and step dad are asleep and my sisters are at their houses. You know time flies and i see my nieces and nephews growing up so fast it makes me sad that im not involved more in their lives. I wish that i could spend more time with everyone but one day this life i have chosen will be worth it.
sPidA: With a nickname like GUNN, can your opponents always expect an all out war,who gave you the nickname or how did it come about?
Guerrero: The nick name Tommy Gunn has been around since i was a kid. Before i chose to fight the older guys would say “whats up Tommy Gunn” so when i decided to fight i knew what i was gonna use. My opponents should expect to go all out for 15 minutes because thats what i train for but with the Gunns (my striking) should be what they worry about, but Im always ready for anything and everything.
sPidA: Is your family involved in your choice of acticities,how has their reaction been to watching your fight or hearing of it?
Guerrero: My family is very supportive of what i do.Since my jiu jitsu tournaments they have always been involved and now MMA they want to be there for me. My mom doesnt agree with it but she accepts it lol. She will see when i buy her a house one day that I chose a good profession. One of my sisters and uncles got to see my fight live along with one of my nieces and nephews and numerous cousins so they were very excited when i won. When i got home my family including my mom who never wants to hear about it was asking details lol so it was cool to come home with my first victory. There will be more to come thats for sure and hopefully they will be recorded so i can show my grandpa who is now a MMA fan. He used to bad mouth the guys hugging on the ground but now he is retired and watches alot of MMA reruns so he likes to see his favorite fighter Urijah Faber fight lol. He was so upset when Mike Brown beat Faber, he now hates Mike Brown. He also appreciates the submissions, its funny to sit with him and watch fights with the things he says like grab the arm and the neck so i hope we will be watching my fights on his tv or he will be watching me fights live on tv.
sPidA: If you could fight any other athlete in the world(non MMA) whom would it be and why?
Guerrero: If i could fight any other athlete non MMA I would have to choose Shooter McGavin from Happy Gilmore lol just kidding id say i would like to fight Juan Manuel Marquez. Not because i dont like him, because i think he is one of the best Mexican boxers out there. So if i got to fight him i would get to say i fought a legend in the sport of boxing. For some reason i also want to say Eli Manning because im a Dallas Cowboy fan and he upsets me alot lol
sPidA: Thank you for your time bro,I’ll be seeing ya come May, anything else you’d like to blast to end this inreview?
Guerrero: Your welcome and Thank you for taking the time to interview me. I know im just coming up but i intend to make a name for my self in MMA. I just want to thank the Lord for another day of life and for me being able to do the things im doing now and for the people in my life. I want to thank my family who I love very much for being there for me and put up with me. My friends who support what i do and my team mates and coaches who put it on me and help me prepare for my fights or tournaments. and to the MMA fans who come out to support their fighter, thank you for making this sport a great one!
sPidA: You’ll be competing in your 2nd MMA bout come April 14th,what did you learn from your debut in Mixed Martial Arts?
Stephanie: I learned soooo much from that fight. I mostly learned that in MMA you can not be one dimensional but well rounded. I think I’m becoming more well rounded.
sPidA: You’ve stayed active in Grappling Tournaments ,would you say your strong point would be your grappling?
Stephanie: Yes, its definitely what I love to do. Its like a chess match on the ground. Being a smaller chick its fun to be able to hold bigger guys down or be able to make space, reverse position and tap them out despite the weight difference.
sPidA : With all due respect to your gym Urban Jungle, have you crossed trained any to prepare you for your upcoming bout at the Legacy Amateur event come April 14th?
Stephanie: Yes! I’ve actually worked with some great coaches from 4 oz fight club. Jeremy and Bob push me in different ways. Those guys have a passion for fighting and I love how welcome they have made me feel. I think its smart to have other coaches helping out and giving me pointers and also being able to spar with other females. I’ve worked with some other great female fighters like Jennifer Scott and Kristy Kester over at 4 oz. I recently started working with my old boxing coach Aaron Pena from Gracie Barra, but Urban Jungle is my home gym. Tony and Michelle are definitely the ones who have inspired me to become a personal trainer and a fighter.
sPidA : Working as a personal trainer, is it easier to stay motivated before any of your competitions?
Stephanie: I think so.I basically live in the gym. My co-workers are so supportive of my training. Everyone I work with is always giving me advice as to what I should be eating, how I should be training and also when I need to rest and recover. They also help passively stretch me out so that’s always nice.
sPidA: What athletes in Mixed Martial Arts/Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu do you look up to for motivation, any that you would like to train with?
Stephanie: Marc Ramirez one of my teammates at Urban Jungle who is someone I look up to. He helps keep me motivated and when we hang out its mostly talking about fighting and training. Recently another fighter Justin Rieswerg whom I got to hang out with during his last fight camp, taught me a thing or two about fighting and nutrition. All the women I went to fight camp with last July in Vegas G2 seeing what they are all doing really helps motivate me. I got to train with Carla Esparza and she has become one of my favorite fighters and I sooooo love her style. I would love to train with her again.
sPidA: What are some of your goals outside of Mixed Martial Arts / Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu?
Stephanie: Some of my goals are to finish school and open up my own Self defense gym that is geared toward women and children. I have such a passion for training and helping people out and changing lives for the better,
sPidA: You seemed to have really kept a strict diet to make weight, what will your first meal be after your bout come April 14th?
Stephanie: I have been sticking to a very strict diet. I’ve never had to diet before so its been tough since I love food but the thing I really want to have is a burger and a beer! =9
sPidA: With promotions like “Girls in Gi” making a wave for women in the sport of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, how much easier is it getting to cross train and meet other women that share the passion Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu?
Stephanie: It is so much easier to train with women now. When I first started there were no women in my weight class at BJJ competitions. It was mostly guys. I’m so grateful that the sport is growing and we are now able to have such training available such as Girls in Gis. Its so different training with women than men. Our bodies just move differently. Makes it nice.
sPidA: Are your parents very supportive of what your doing both in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu/Mixed Martial Arts? How do they feel about your choices in combat sports?
Stephanie: My parents are sooooo supportive of my training. They thinks its cool since I have such a passion for the sport. My dad likes watching MMA so its cool and brags about me to his friends. My grandfather was actually a pro boxer waaay back in the day so no wonder I like it. My mom wants to come to my fight but I don’t think I’m gonna let her. I think it would be too stressful.
sPidA: Thank you for your time Stephanie,wish you all the best, any last minute thank yous to those reading this?
Stephanie: I want to thank my coaches Tony and Michelle/Urban Jungle. My 4 oz coaches Jeremy and Bob and to all my teammates at both gyms. Tussle Fight Gear. Nokout, and everyone who supports me through it all. Last but not least sPidA for taking the time to interview me.
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On August 18th, 2010, the MMA Carnival known as Strikeforce stopped by our quaint little Metropolis to give us a very memorable evening in the sport that we all love. To some, like my new Twitter buddy King Mo Lawal and famed Black House Manager, Ed Soares just another day at the office. For others, it was their first chance on the national stage.
For one man, it was his chance to get back to the dance. Vinicius “Draculino” Magalhaes is probably better at jiu-jitsu than all of us reading this combined. He’s a local legend who owns Gracie Barra Houston (Webster, TX), a national champion practitioner and also boasts a short MMA career. His last fight was over 5 years ago in Brazil. So why after all these accomplishments does a 39-year old teacher and school owner want to get back in the ring? Well, I had the chance to find out why with the man I call Drac.
Texas Fighting: First off Drac, what made you want to get back into the ring/cage after 5 years? Was your family for it? How big a role did they have in your return?
Draculino: I felt the itch again, and in my guts I knew that I am not done and could still perform at a high level. My family was concerned because I hurt my neck in training, but when I said I would do it anyway they gave me 100% support. They mean everything to me.
Texas Fighting: Who made the call to offer you the fight?
Draculino: Saul Soliz representing Strikeforce
Texas Fighting: Are you leaving the door open for a return?
Draculino: Sure! The Old Draculino is back! I just have to focus on a couple of really important things to get done this year and then I will be back.
Texas Fighting: You’ve got the reputation of being one of the all-time nice guys in our sport. Did that ever make your opponents take you lightly?
Draculino: I can be the nicest guy in the world but I also can be pretty mean and aggressive. Inside the cage or ring, I try to do my job. If my opponent acts like a jerk, I would love to hurt him. If not, just enough to win.
Texas Fighting: What did you change about your training regimen for this fight in comparison to the last?
Draculino: Same thing, almost no change whatsoever. I just trained smarter this time. Avoiding injury was a top priority.
Texas Fighting: Were you at the level you wanted to be at with your boxing when it came time to step in the cage at Strikeforce?
Draculino: A lot of people think that I am just a BJJ guy. They are right! But I can strike also. Lots of people were commenting that they were surprised with my game on the feet and even said that I looked better than my opponent in this area. I have great striking coaches and training partners. I wanna say thanks to Kristen, Frank Adame, Pedrao, Angel Huerta, Cezario and Master Olimpio. I fit my striking game into my BJJ game very well.
Texas Fighting: You got to prepare with Frankie Edgar for this fight. Did Frankie ever sting you with a big punch in your preparation for this fight?
Draculino: Frankie is an amazing fighter, respectful person and a hell of a fighter! We trained more on the grappling side and thank God he did not hit me hard! He proved to the world that he is the best lightweight.
Texas Fighting: What is a more gratifying feat for you? Winning an MMA Fight or Winning the Brazilian National Championship in Jiu-Jitsu? Which is harder to win?
Draculino: A lot of people don’t know but winning a high level BJJ competition as a black belt is one of the hardest things in the world. For me a win is just as gratifying in BJJ or MMA. Same thing.
Texas Fighting: How did your students at Gracie Barra Houston (Webster) get you ready for this fight?
Draculino: They are great! I am blessed with such a wonderful group of students. I trained with my students for Houston and Belo Horizonte in Brazil. They pushed me a lot and helped me so much with everything. I have to mention Greg Bellomy that trained with me every single day. He helped me a bunch with my wrestling and was my main sparring partner here in Texas. He will makes waves in MMA. He is 4-0 as an amateur and 1-0 as a pro. Just a great guy!
Texas Fighting: In your opinion, who is the best jiu-jitsu/jujutsu practitioner signed to a major fight organization?
Draculino: Renzo Gracie with the UFC. He is a legend, master and friend. The man knows more NOGI BJJ in the world than anyone and is also the toughest man alive, EASY!!!
Look for the legend that is Draculino back in a cage near you in early 2011. For the very few in the sport who don’t know Draculino, you are surely missing out. Obviously one of the world’s most prolific BJJ practitioners, decorated all over the world as a Pan-American champion, Brazilian National Champion, Abu-Dhabi Competitor and 4th Degree Black Belt under Carlos Gracie Jr.