“What keeps me motivated is becoming the best…” Randy Villarreal Interview

Randy Villarreal - 125 lbs Prospect

Probably one of the most active Mixed Martial Arts fighters at both 125-135 weight class division. A few words with someone I personally know and whose career I have always followed. Bound STFC come Friday July 13th, a few words with Randy Villarreal.

sPidA: What first attracted you to Mixed Martial Arts?

Villarreal: When living in San Antonio my brother used to bring UFC DVD’s to my apt, that got us looking for a place to train and we found your class. (Yes our very own sPidA was my first Jiu-Jitsu Instructor)

sPidA: You’ve competed a lot in both your amateur MMA career as well as your Pro career now, what keeps you motivated?

Villareal: I have had over 25 fights in 5 years, what keeps me motivated is becoming the best in the 125lb weight division and be World Champion. Then I’ll be satisfied!!

sPidA: You have fought some of the best talent in both the 125-135lb weight division, if you could host a Flyweight Tournament and add 3 others (including yourself) who would they be and why?

Villareal: If we’re talking 25ers not in the ufc for a flyweight tourney it would def be Will Campuzano (cause thats the one 125lb fight I want more than any else and I feel he doesnt wanna fight me) Jimmy Flick (so I can avenge my loss to him) and either Jason Sampson or Nick Mamalis (so I can avenge those losses as well, since I was winning both those fights.)

sPidA: People always ask me “when is the best time for a fighter to start competing?” Your thoughts?

Villarreal: I would say, the time frame for an MMA fighter to start competing would depend on the individual and the amount of time he put into his training, both physically and mentally. With that said, realistically anywhere from 8 months to a year of solid full time training and the right Coaching.

sPidA: With fights getting harder and harder to find here in Texas, are you looking to compete outside the State this year?

Villareal: I wouldn’t mind fighting outside the State (as I have before) but it all depends on the pay and a fight with ANYONE at 125lbs.

sPidA: Thank you bro for making time for this, as always we wish you the best,anything else to end this Interview?

Villarreal: Id like to thank my coaches Durwyn Lamb,  Tony Tipton,  Albert Hughes, Coach Javad and Coach Sina for all the work they put into me for my fight this Friday the 13th. Midnight Activity Music for being there for me since my amateur days. I’d also like to thank you Spida for all the continued work you do for ALL the fighters and last but not least I’d like to thank all my fans and supporters. I love you all!!!
MMA Cage Fights - STFC 21

TexasFighting.com’s Nomad invited to “The Big Easy”


At a recent submission tournament held in San Antonio, Spida Garay, and I were speaking about my travels around the world and how great it would be to share my Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) training experiences with all the TexasFighting.com readers. So here goes.

This week I’m in New Orleans “The Big Easy”, Louisiana and honored to be the guest of Professor Matthias Meister, Owner and Head Instructor of NOLABJJ, Brazilian Jiu JItsu of New Orleans. Professor Matthias was born and raised in Switzerland. In 1986, after serving his country in the Swiss Army he moved to the United States. Not long after arriving in the United States, Professor Matthias became interested in BJJ after watching Royce Gracie fight in the first UFC event. Professor Matthias had already studied Judo as a teen so BJJ was not a strange sport for him. Professor Matthias received his black belt in 2009 under Professor Raphael Ellwanger, promoted through Carlos Gracie Jr.

Upon first entering NOLABJJ I was taken aback by the personality of the gym. This is one of the nicer BJJ gyms I have trained at in the United States. I would describe NOLABJJ as a modern MMA gym meets a restored old brick warehouse. The BJJ training area, 1,300 sq. ft., is outfitted with clean, well kept, Zebra mats.

After class I was able to interview Professor Matthias. When asked about his training philosophy, Matthias provided that his teachings “are all about fundamentals.” Matthias continued, “I try to stay on top of new moves as much as I can, but I realized a long time ago that without a solid understanding of the fundamental moves it is impossible to execute any advanced or complex moves.” Professor Matthias concluded with “This sport is a passion for me and I want to pass this on; it makes me happy when I see a student get hooked in BJJ since I know the huge benefits it holds for your mental and physical we being.”

While training at NOLABJJ I meet Victor Garza, a blue belt. Victor is originally from La Joya, Texas and began his BJJ training in Temecula, California under Professor Ricardo Guimaraes and Master Royler Gracie, while serving in the U.S. Marine Corps. Victor told me that he has been training under Professor Matthias “for a little over a year and a half” and “NOLABJJ is by far the best school in New Orleans and offers several different styles of martial arts to its students.” Victor ended with, “We are blessed to have three black belts guiding us along the journey.”

From the moment I walked into the NOLABJJ I was impressed! NOLABJJ students were very welcoming and Professor Matthias made me feel at home. The gym was very clean, well kept, and well lit. I enjoyed training at NOLABJJ and being mentored by two black belts and a brown belt on the mat. I also enjoyed watching Professors Marco and Matthias roll with each other, it was very insightful. NOLABJJ was founded in 2000 and was the first BJJ school to become established in the Greater New Orleans area. NOLABJJ is a solid center for BJJ, with about 100 students enrolled, in the South and boasts three black belts; Professors Marco Macera, Edward Lirette, and Matthias Meister, for instructors. NOLABJJ also offers yoga, kickboxing, wrestling, and Sambo. The only down fall would be lack of parking.

The next time you travel to New Orleans please stop by and train with NOLABBJJ. NOLABJJ is located at 4521 Magazine Street, New Orleans, LA., for more details please visit their web site at nolabjj.

“I see this as my re-birth into the sport” Kevin McGee Interview

A few words with Lufkin,Texas Mixed Martial Artist Kevin McGee, Bound PREMIERE FIGHT SERIES, July 28th in Fort Worth,Texas. Check out his website for more info: ” www.loudhousecrossfit.com ”

sPidA: You’re coming in with a 2-2 record– are you hungry for a win come July 28th?

McGee : I am very hungry for a win! I see this as my rebirth into the sport.

sPidA: Being a CrossFit instructor, is it hard to stay motivated,or do others help you stay focused?

McGee: I have a lot of people encouraging me to work hard and perform my best, but my strongest motivators are my children. I want to be a hero to them—not as a winning, big-name fighter, necessarily, but as a man who works hard to achieve his goals and doesn’t back down from a challenge.

sPidA: Alex Russ was your last opponent– he is ranked a top the Texas elite. Are you taking the loss and moving on or expecting a re-match in the future?

McGee: I consider Alex to be a friend. He is a good guy and I want the best for him. That being said, no fighter wants a loss to go un-avenged and I certainly wouldn’t turn down the opportunity!

sPidA: Having a teammate training for the same card, how does it feel knowing someone else will be battling along side with you on the same card?

McGee: It’s great. I actually have two teammates on the card: Jay Flores and Marshall Gorham. We’re all coming to fight! Getting there and being there together simply makes us stronger in every aspect.

sPidA: For someone who has never been to Lufkin, what best describes the town and its people? Is MMA big there or still growing?

McGee: MMA is blowing up all over the world.I don’t think there is a town in America that doesn’t have fans.Lufkin is the same way—from crazy drunken rednecks that think they can whoop Chael Sonnen to the hard working 8 year olds in the boxing program at the Boys And Girls Club who dream of getting to that level. Lufkin is a tightly knit country town and there is a lot of support here.

sPidA: Dana White had talked retirement within the next 6 years, if given his job, what would you change, if anything, in the organization (UFC)?

McGee: That’s a tough question! Being a business owner, myself, I know there is a LOT to it. I can’t imagine running an organization of that magnitude! He has obviously built a successful model and I can’t say that I would change much without knowing more intimate details of the operation. It is the pinnacle of our sport, competing in the UFC, and I don’t really see that changing in the near future, with or without Dana White.

sPidA: Another MMA giant will be closing its doors soon (STRIKEFORCE). Good or Bad? Your thoughts?

McGee: I am a fan of all MMA. When any big-name organization closes, it has its pros and cons… But I see most of the Strikeforce fighters continuing on in other organizations. That’s really what matters, right—the fighters, themselves.

sPidA: How many times a day do you fit training into your schedule?

McGee: I train very hard, and then I rest very hard—usually something like three days on, one day off.The three days on are full out, high intensity sessions with, generally, a strength workout, a very intense metcon, and skill work.The rest day is meant to be full of active recovery—foam rolling, low intensity single modal workouts, yoga, ice baths, etc.

sPidA: I have seen your photos on Facebook– is Ice bathing as bad as people say it is? How often would you say people try it?

McGee: Haha – Ice baths suck!! Period but they are the single most effective recovery tool I have ever found. Most of the time people experimenting with ice baths don’t do them properly. I would suggest that anyone wishing to try them do plenty of research, beforehand, and have a few friends with them when the time comes to jump in. We have a 100 gallon watering trough at LoudHouse CrossFit that we use exclusively for ice baths. You fill it with about 60 gallons of water, or so, and about 100 pounds of ice, then you jump in, submerging completely up to your neck, and stay in 12-15 minutes. I try to take in some calories while I’m in the water. Trust me… it is an experience you won’t forget!

sPidA: Thank you much– I will be there come July 28th, Anything you would like to add to this interview?

McGee: Hey, man – it’s my pleasure! All I want to add is a thank you to my coaches and teammates, especially Eddie Pepper, Shannon Porter, Jason and Amanda Skinner, Marshall Gorham, Jay Flores, and James Hubbard. I also want to thank my beautiful girlfriend, Elsie, for all her help and support. She is a light in the dark. Thanks, also, to my Church and to my family—their wisdom and guidance has done more for me than I can express.

Oh, one last thing—I’m still looking for sponsors, if anyone might be interested! Get a hold of me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/kevin.captainmagic

“Looking to put Lufkin,Texas on the map!” Jay Flores Interview

Out of Lufkin,Texas…JAY FLORES

A few words with Jay Flores out of East Texas House of Champions and Loudhouse Crossfit in Luftkin,Texas, before his fight on PREMIERE FIGHT SERIES on July 28th in Forth Worth,Texas. Lets do this!

sPidA: Mixed Martial Arts has become so popular, what do you get asked by most that know you compete?

Jay: The question I get asked the most is when my next fight is. The MMA fans in Lufkin are always asking when the next events are so they can come watch.

sPidA: With ZUFFA buying companies out in the past, do you see that as a negative or positive thing for the sport?

Jay: Zuffa is a big name in the sport, I believe it’s a really good thing for the sport. They have done really well with promoting the sport of MMA and giving it the exposure it needs.

sPidA: So many top guys making the news with arrest and so forth, what keeps you leveled and on a more postive state of mind?

Jay: I stay pretty busy with work and training 6 days a week, and when I do have off, I usually like to relax, whether it be lazy at home or out on the lake with friends and family!!! Also staying focused on God, family and what I love to do keeps me out of trouble.

sPidA: How much support do you get from loved ones for you following your dreams to compete in MMA?

Jay: My family is my biggest support that I’ve had. Talking about how proud they are at family events, or a simple phone call from a distant aunt or uncle checking to make sure I haven’t had my face bashed in. LoL But more the smile on my Dad’s face when he’s telling friends and family about his only son getting paid to hit people in the face,keeps me going. LoL

sPidA: Every fighter always makes a big deal about their walk out song, what are you coming out to and why?

Jay: Oh that’s a secret, I can’t tell that!! Lol But it’s gonna be a really cool song and it’s gonna show that I’m coming out to fight for that W!!!!!

sPidA: How big of a fan of MMA are you,do you collect memorabilia?

Jay: I’m a fan of the sport. I do my daily check up on MMA news and watch the fights with friends and family. As far as memorabilia, I don’t have any, LoL

sPidA: If you had to fight Joe Rogan to get into the UFC,would you and how would you try and beat him?

Jay: Yes. I would beat him by a Mortal Kombat style ,brutality finish. Ha

sPidA: Cutting weight is always half the battle, whats your recovery meal right after weigh ins?

Jay: Usually fruits and a recovery drink right after. Then a few meals and lots of water!

sPidA: If you had to describe your style of fighting, what would it be?

Jay: I’m pretty calm. I’m a striker by trade. I pick my shots, and throw them with bad intentions. BOOM!

sPidA: Thank you bro,we’ll be closing up this interview,last minute thoughts and comments?

Jay: I would like to first and foremost Thank my Heavenly Father for another great opportunity to show case my skills as a fighter. I’d also like to Thank my fight team at East Texas House of Champions, and Loudhouse Crossfit, James Hubbard, Kevin McGee, Marshall Gorham, Bobby Harris, my super beautiful and awesome girlfriend Ashleigh, all of my family and friends for the great support you’ve given me throughout the years. On July 28th, we’ll be looking to put Lufkin, Texas on the map!!!!

“A family that fights together stays together!” Lisa Marie Lamb Interview

 

Interview with Lisa Marie Lamb out of  Forth Worth ,Texas. She will be in the Co-Main Event for Premiere Fight Series 1, taking place in Forth Worth,Texas on July 28…Making her transition from Boxing into Mixed Martial Arts..We talk training,family and more….Enjoy!

sPidA : First off, what Academy do you train out of and (with all due respect) do you cross train at any other gyms?

 Lisa Marie : Phalanx MMA Academy cross train at Genesis.  Spoke with Allen Mohler and my brother Johnny Lozano, and they reached out wanting to help so I will be headed to Mohler’s to get some training soon
sPidA : What was the first thing that attracted you to combat sports?
Lisa Marie: The discipline and courage, I think everyone fights for different reasons but it’s the passion that people put in it. I’ve always wanted to fight as a little girl but never did until my adult years, which is okay had too many things going on that would have distracted me.
sPidA : You work with another Media outlet (Combat Sports TV) Being in the game, How has working Cage Side helped you apprecaite the sport of Mixed Martial Arts?
Lisa Marie: You get to see the intensity in the fighters eyes, you see their drive, and you can also see when someone is discouraged.  You feel their presence, working for CSTV I have to pay attention to every move and I can’t be bias. Also, you can hear every punch, leg kick, from ring side makes me respect the sport very much and I keep telling myself “why am I doing this again” lol
sPidA : This will be your MMA debut, having that boxing background, have you specifically trained for a stand up war or are you ready for wherever this goes??
Lisa Marie: Everyone knows I’m a boxer but I started out kickboxing before I boxed.  So being a striker I already know that I will be taken down so I have prepared myself that’s all I have been working on is my ground game, but if they want to stand……..so be it 😉
sPidA: With guys like Durwyn (husband),Randy Villareal,Vick and many others, how much more prepared do you feel sparring with these beast coming into this bout?
 Lisa Marie: I have several sparring partners that spar with once a week.  On Monday’s I have MMA sparing with Jason/Randy villareal, Tuesday’s boxing sparring with pro boxer Kisha and on Wednesday I grapple with the tough undefeated amateur MMA fighter Sabrina Garcia coming out of TFS she has a wresting back ground.  They all reached out to me wanting to help and they all have given me great advice, constantly drilling different techniques.  I always tell each of them do not give me any false security when sparring because it’s easy to work but let me work for everything so I know that I am progressing, but yes each time I spar I gain some confidence for this fight.  Sometimes I can’t believe how quickly I have learned, but I have been around it all my life. Getting one on one training has really helped instead of taking a class makes  a huge difference and that is why I am moving a lot faster. So big shout out to all of my trainers/sparring partners.
sPidA : How have your friends/family re-acted to you taking this step to fight in Mixed Martial Arts?

Lisa Marie: They think I am crazy,they say enough is enough already boxing is one thing but MMA?? I just laugh because I will never take an MMA fight if I wasn’t prepared, but only a few know my love, passion and dedication for the sport.  I train 6 days a week sometimes twice a day. Losing isn’t an option it never is, but this is the first time I have had 3 months to prepare for a fight and stamina and having a heart of a warrior will not be the reason I lose only because my opponent was better….
sPidA : With your whole family (husband and son) being active in competition, what do you guys do as a family to just relax and not think about fighting?
Lisa Marie:  lol honestly there isn’t a moment that we are not talking, watching sports in the house although we may go to the movies, hang out with family, out to eat or whatever it never fails the conversation finds its way to talk about fighting.  I said this 6 years ago when I was interviewed by north texas boxing  everybody knows that saying a “family that prays together stays together, (very true) but I also say “a family that fights together stays together” only because the time that fighters/trainers have to put into the sport its time away from home but not with us we are always together so it works out although being around each other 24/7 we can get on each other’s nerves J
sPidA: With the nickname in Boxing as “Lady Bulldog” are you bringing that same mental/physical toughnes into your Mixed Martial Arts career?

Lisa Marie: We talked about it and Durwyn takes pride in giving everyone nicknames according to their fight style and when he watches me spar he still sees that aggressive side of me so we are keeping  it J
sPidA : Everybody saw the Pacquiao vs Bradley fight, after the bout,where you as surprised as the rest of the Nation to see Bradley win or did you call it the same?
Lisa Marie: You know after watching it the second time it was a lot closer than I thought.  If you take away from being a Pacquiao fan and just be a fan of the sport than you can see that Bradley won more rounds, but I think Pacquiao still won and I’m not a huge Pacquiao fan…..but I guess now Pacquiao knows how Marquez feels 😉
sPidA : Are you planning on staying active in both sports *(Boxing/MMA) which can you say is hardest to train for?
Lisa Marie : Yes boxing will always be my first love and I have grown to love MMA.  Actually,  I was supposed to fight June 30th in Atlanta but the fight didn’t go through, then I was supposed to re-match a girl I fought in the beginning of my career on June 29th in Florida, but I wasn’t able to get off from work.  So yes I will be active in both sports.  I think MMA is harder to train for because you get injured and bruised faster than boxing  and there are so many things to learn standing and on the ground.  Boxing you only worry about hands in MMA it’s everything!!!! But I respect both sport equally. Anyone who steps into the ring/cage gains my respect automatically
sPidA : Thank you Lisa,Great interview! we will see you come Premiere Fight Series in Forth Worth,Texas,any last comments to add to this?

Lisa Marie : Yes I would like to thank everyone who has supported me from boxing and now MMA.  My trainers and my sparring partners without  them I would not be able to do this.  I also would like to thank Rafeal Casias and Premier fight Promotions for adding a female bout and making it the Co-Main Event.  I’m excited and I am ready to put on a great fight for all the fans!!! Last my family most importantly,  Durwyn and Eric without them I couldn’t’ be doing this AT ALL  I love you guys and thank you for putting countless hours of training even though it doesn’t seem like I appreciate it, your are the only one who has so much faith in me,  and my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who makes all of this possible on his time…. Thank you, I am very honored and humbled. Hope to see everyone July 28th with my hand raised!
PREMIERE FIGHT SERIES 1 / June 28, Forth Worth,Texas

“Combining combative sports with total fitness” …a few words with Mitchell Hale

Mitchell Hale
Mitchell Hale, 4-2

Interview with Abilene, Texas Mixed Martial Arts fighter, Mitchell Hale, coming out of a 2 year layout, we talk strategy,new gym and a new beginning for this North Texas standout! Lets begin.

sPidA:  What can tell us about your current gym and what differs it from others?

Hale :  Let me start off by saying Future Fitness  Fight Team is legit. the gym is founded by my head coach Brandon Farran. The concept behind Future Fitness Fight Team, is combining combative sports with total fitness. A lot of MMA gyms forget just how important fitness is in Mixed Martial Arts

sPidA: Your last bout was 2 yrs ago, will there be any Cage rust going into this bout or have you stayed busy sparring and helping others?

Hale : I don’t think there will be any rust, but rather an unveiling of the new fighter I’ve become since training with the Future Fitness Team gym.

sPidA: What kind of support are you getting from the local scene and what can your friends and family expect?

Hale : I have a ton of support coming out to this event and they can expect to see a whole new fighter in every aspect of the game.

sPidA: Having had your coach Brandon Farren win his bout just a few weeks ago at EFC, How much if any has that motivated you for this fight?

Hale : Naturally, you can’t help but to be motivated by the performance he put on, but even more so it lets me know I’m on the right path to victory! I’ve gone through his whole boot camp with him and now the team is focused on my bootcamp, which i am currently going through.

sPidA : What have you been training on or will we like your opponent have to wait and see?

Hale : I can’t give away to many of our secrets, no homo, but there’s a reason why Brandon is built like a Greek God. So you know my strength  and cardio will make a statement on its own. The technique I learn on a daily basis is going to be all the difference in this fight.

sPidA : Your last opponent was Cody Pfister,who was picked up to compete on this past seasons TUFF reality show,are you a fan,what are your thoughts on this if any?

Hale : Big ups to Cody but, I really don’t have the time to focus my attention to reality shows; i am a single father, a student, and a full time fighter. My free time goes to giving my body the rest that it needs to recover and perform.

sPidA: Is there one fighter (other than your coach) that you just respect watching compete,if so whom and why?

Hale : Fedor, because of his one punch knockout power!

sPidA: Not to overlook your next opponent but are you looking at staying active in the fight game or will you be playing it by ear after this next bout?

Hale : I most certainly am, got some good opportunities lined up for the future but my focus remains on this fight!

sPidA : Is there such a thing as too much MMA, Your thought,is the UFC overdoing it with all these showing or just giving fighters the much needed exposure?

Hale : I think its a little bit of both. Of course the  UFC will always be the ultimate goal for every serious fighter, because of the pay and exposure. At the same time the over kill keeps fighters, who haven’t made it too the big leagues, hungry, busy and able to make a career out of MMA.

sPida : Thank you Hale for your time, any last minute comments bro?

Hale : This is definitely a fight you won’t want to miss, so MMA fans come out and show your love for the sport!

((Would like to end this by thanking our Media sponsors: TheMucleFactoryonline.com, www.bigdfitness.com and www.gearedupnutrition.com))

24/7 Productions
24/7 Productions: For tickets contact: (432) 500-7979