Interview with Sam Alvey
FighterEmpire: “You have an awesome record of twenty six and seven list with seventeen of those being by KO and TKO. You clearly have something most don’t, why would you say you are so skilled?”
Sam Alvey: “First I have to correct what Sherdog says. I’m twenty seven and I’ve only lost six times. I always bring that up, there’s a fight over in New Zealand that I argue about every time but yeah I only had six losses. So anyway to answer the question I just enjoy this more than most people it’s not so much work for me as it is what I get up to do every day.”
FighterEmpire: “So this is what you live for you don’t feel like you’re doing a job or anything it’s just you’re doing your passion?”
Sam Alvey: “I am doing what I love doing. If I didn’t get paid to do it I’d still do it. I always joke I don’t get paid to fight I get paid to cut weight. It’s the truth I’ve fought for free, I would fight for free but to cut weight you’d have to pay me.”
FighterEmpire: “Why do you prefer to fight so aggressively? What advantages does that have over a defensive striking style or grappling?”
Sam Alvey: “The biggest advantage is the fans like to see the aggression. I could go out and be another boring fight like so many others but the fans wouldn’t respond like they might do to me right now.”
FighterEmpire: “Yeah absolutely, so it’s more of like to build up your fame and your reputation instead of a like a strategic fight advantage?”
Sam Alvey: “Yes absolutely, it is for the fans it’s what people wanna see and I wanna do what people wanna see. Because if it wasn’t for the fans I wouldn’t have the platform to do what I wanna do.”
FighterEmpire: “It takes a very mentally and physically strong person a fight professional MMA, what motivates you to fight and what’s going through your head when you’re in the ring and when you’re training?”
Sam Alvey: “I just like it I don’t over think like so many other people have. I just get in the cage and I do what I enjoy doing. There’s not much more to it than that. I just get in there. I wake up and think about fighting I go and fight I go and rest I think about fighting then go and do it more. That’s my life I just enjoy it.”
FighterEmpire: “So it’s not even a thing about staying motivated through an obstacle, you’re just purely doing what you enjoy and what you love?”
Sam Alvey: “Yeah it’s not hard for me to stay motivated I get to do what I do and I love every second of it.”
FighterEmpire: “And at what point in your life do you realize that you wanted it to be dedicated to MMA?”
Sam Alvey: “My story just kind of developed all of the sudden. I mean I started out doing it for free like everyone else then all the sudden somebody said they would pay me to do it and that’s even better. Before long the paychecks kept getting a little bigger and a little bigger. Never big but always just big enough to keep me interested enough to keep me from getting a real job. And eventually it turned into this career.”
FighterEmpire: “So what did you do for work while you were still fighting for free?”
Sam Alvey: “I was in college at the time so I bussed tables or was a bouncer somewhere. I’ve had a hundred different jobs that I’ve always done. I was doing those jobs up until the UFC.”
FighterEmpire: “Did you finish your degree while you were still fighting or did you stop going to college to pursue your career?”
Sam Alvey: “Yeah I graduated college with a bachelors in business management.”
FighterEmpire: “So you’re intelligent and you can also kick ass as well?”
Sam Alvey: “Yes sir.”
FighterEmpire: “How did it feel for you once you first got signed onto the UFC? Was that something you had been wanting to do and a goal you have had for awhile?”
Sam Alvey: “It was, and the feeling it gave me was such sense of pride and accomplishment. It was something I dedicated my life to for so long and finally somebody said I was good enough to be there. I couldn’t have the life I have now without the UFC.”
FighterEmpire: “How did your family and friends react to you getting signed on to the UFC?”
Sam Alvey: “They were almost as happy as I was. They knew all the blood sweat and tears I shed over the years. They all understand that. They were proud as well as just thrilled.”
FighterEmpire: “How do new people react when you tell them? Are they intimidated or are they impressed? How does someone react to you saying “Hey nice to meet you I’m Sam Alvey, I’m a UFC fighter.”
Sam Alvey: “It’s really cool before i was in the UFC i was 23-5 which is a good record too. But nobody cared. But as soon as I came into the UFC and I came in with a loss I was 25-4 or 25-5 but all the sudden people cared. Even though I only had a loss in the UFC people just enjoyed being able to talk to me.”
FighterEmpire: “So people would be more impressed and interested to speak with you once you were signed?”
Sam Alvey: “Yeah I imagine it’s the same for all pro athletes. As soon as they find out you’ve made it in the NFL, or made the MLB or NBA they immediately wanna talk to you. They wanna know what you’ve done find out how you got there.”
Fighterempire: “How long did it take you to go from your first day of training to signing onto the UFC?”
Sam Alvey: “Around seven or eight years.”
FighterEmpire: “What got you first interested, like what made you first decide to start training?”
Sam Alvey: “The thought of getting paid to do something I’d do for free inspired me to take it a little more serious. To be honest I didn’t know what the UFC was until well after I turned professional. It was just something I enjoyed doing.”
FighterEmpire: “Could you see yourself doing anything else with your life?”
Sam Alvey: “Oh absolutely, I’m far from a one trick pony. One day I’m gonna come back and use my college degree. Probably after I’m done paying for it. I’m gonna have my own gym. Honestly if there was a way I could get paid to hunt I would be a professional hunter.”
FighterEmpire: “What do you like to hunt?”
Sam Alvey: “Whatever you got for me, I’ve done it all. I do enjoy hunting birds more than anything else I have fun with that. But I enjoy deer and elk too.”
FighterEmpire: “So you’ve got a wild variety of skills and interests your not just solely fighting like alotta people do.”
Sam Alvey: “Yeah if I enjoy it I do It. I enjoy hunting so I do it, I enjoy fighting I do that. I think that’s why i smile so much because I don’t stop myself from doing the things I enjoy.”
FighterEmpire: “So how much time do you spend training is it like a full time job for you?”
Sam Alvey: “Yeah I probably do about 6 hours a day. Sometimes more sometimes a little less.”
FighterEmpire: “And how many days per week?”
Sam Alvey: “5-6. At least 5, usually 6.”
FighterEmpire: “So it’s definitely like a full time job that’s how long most people spend working.”
Sam Alvey: “Yeah I still teach at my gym too. So I still run 15-20 hours of classes during the week.”
FighterEmpire: “So most of your entire week is dedicated to MMA and training?”
Sam Alvey: “Yeah and in my downtime I play videogames and spend time with my kids.”
Fighterempire: “So how did it feel for you when you first stepped into the ring to compete? Were you nervous or excited?”
Sam Alvey: “I was the happiest I’d ever been. I knew everything I’d done and all the decisions ive made were finally justified. All the years of just scraping by were finally justified it was an overwhelming moment.”
FighterEmpire: “Did being so overwhelmed with emotion affect your performance at all?”
Sam Alvey: “No, no nervousness whatsoever. I was happy to do it even my first fight I was just thrilled to be there it was justification for everything I’d put myself through.”

These next questions were sent to us by our viewers….

“What exercises can I do to build my knockout power?”

Sent by… Canswizz88 

Sam Alvey: “The secret is just punch a lot. Go to a punching bag and punch before every workout. I do 100 punches on each arm and 100 kicks on each leg before the warmup. If you wanna be a good runner you run a lot. If you wanna be a good stair climber climb alotta stairs. if you wanna be a strong puncher you need to punch strong a lot.”
FighterEmpire: “So there’s no exercises you can specifically do, just punch a lot and your body will adapt?”
Sam Alvey: “I’d say if you wanna throw strong hooks throw hooks. If you wanna throw a strong jab throw jabs. A lot of it is mental too, you have to dedicate yourself to the punch. Alotta people that throw soft punches they only half throw it there already thinking of the move ahead. Every punch throw it like it’s the last punch. Anytime I hit a guy my intention is to shorten his life. I’m not aiming at his face I’m aiming at the back of his head going through through his face.”
FighterEmpire: “So hit hard hit often and punch through the target?”
Sam Alvey: “Yes.”

Even when I get a clean shot i can never drop my opponent. Do you have any tips on how to increase the likelihood of a knockout?

Sent by… Utherion 5376: 

Sam Alvey: The accuracy of your punches definitely helps. That’s why Anderson Silva was such a wonderful knockout artist. He didn’t hit harder than everyone else, he always tapped them in the right place. On top of what I was just saying, dedicate yourself to every punch. Use the dark side.

“Would you say knockout power is genetic or learned through training?”

Sent by… Gabbylchocolzats

Sam Alvey: I would definitely say it’s learned training but there’s nothing wrong with having genetics on your side either. If someone was born to punch softly, they can develop a strong punch. It just takes the time and dedication to do it.

What is your strategy when you are going for a KO or TKO?

Sent by… Jasonx1995

Sam Alvey: I kinda answered that a question or two ago, when I’m going for a KO or TKO I’m trying to shorten his life. I’m trying to make it so when he’s older I don’t want him to remember this day. I’m a real nice guy and afterwards I’ll apologize, but you know we’re two consenting adults and I’m sure he’s trying to do the same thing to me. Have bad intent with everything you throw.”

“Are there any punches in particular that are most likely to land a knockout?”

Sent by… Ajax Ajax 

Sam Alvey: “Hooks work really well, and that’s more the physiology of your body. The button is a little lower in front of your ear. If you hit right there, any pressure you put there will weaken. Putting a lot of instant pressure on those nerves will lead to a knockout. The hooks wiggle your jaw left and right when you land it and the left and right motion is what puts the pressure on the button.”

“Having trained with many different people how big of a factor would you say weight class is in striking power and speed?”

Sent by… HernanCB69

Sam Alvey: “I definitely noticed the bigger the guy is the harder they hit, at least the harder it feels for me. That is if they’re punching correctly and putting their body weight behind the punch. So the bigger you are the more bodyweight to have behind the punch. That’s not to say a little guy cant get power as well, but a little guy hitting a bigger guy it’s harder to get that power. But a little guy hitting another little guy that powers there.”
FighterEmpire: “So would you say a heavier size effects their speed? Could a heavyweight have the same speed as a featherweight?”
Sam Alvey: “Probably not. Bigger guys have longer quickfire muscles. They can be fast, look at Mike Tyson he was faster than any featherweight in the UFC right now. But on average you’re not gonna find a heavyweight than can move anywhere near as fast as a featherweight.” 

“What exercises do you do to train your punching speed?”

Sent by…Gregsnz 

Sam Alvey: “Alot of it is again I hit the bags a lot. Sometimes 5 minutes will be all power. Other times I just hit the bag as many times as I can. One of my conditioning coaches has got a drill where he’ll stand behind me with a laser pointer and shine the wall in different spots and my job is to react as fast I can. It’s not so much a speed drill for my hands as it is for my eyes to my hands.” 
Fighterempire: So both with punching harder and punching faster it equates to punching more often? If you wanna punch hard punch hard and if you wanna punch fast you need to punch fast?”

“Do you have any tips on how to increase the speed of my punch?”

Sent by… Terryiezsx 

Sam Alvey: “How you fight is a product of how you train. If you train to punch faster then you’ll punch fast in the fight.”

“How can i better conserve my energy while striking?”

Sent by… Perry pjsmith 

Sam Alvey: “It’s a matter of breathing, you gotta teach yourself how to breathe. That takes time and experience and a good coach working with you while you’re doing it.”

“Is it possible to better train myself to take a punch?”

Sent by… Jerodajay 

Sam Alvey: “I think there’s a way to train yourself to react better to being punched. But working out your button that is genetics. whether you got a thick skull or not. But there are ways you can move with punches to lessen the effects of punches. But better yet, don’t get hit.”

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