Smile’n Sam Alvey says he has the full support of his family as he aims for a crucial breakthrough in the Octagon at the first ever UFC event in Utica, N.Y.
On Friday, Alvey is looking to climb the rankings when he takes on Gian Villante, the number-15 ranked fighter.
And he’s already predicted that he’ll win in the match that starts at 10 p.m. ET.
“I get that question a lot, and I always say the same thing. I’m going to submit him in the third round,” Alvey said.
“After this fight with Gian Villante it would put me at 13 or 14 (in the rankings). I’m going to try and break through that top 10, I haven’t figured out who I want to fight yet. Nobody has fight requested me yet, but it will get there,” he said.
“This fight is very important at 85 middleweight. I made it to the rankings at one point,” he said.
“This is the fight that is going to get me back into the rankings and I would love to do that in Utica. I’m having a great time out here, the people are wonderful and looking forward to putting on a great, powerful and dominating show.”
Competing Mixed Martial Arts wasn’t always apart of the plan, but after trying the sport he fell in love – quick.
“I just kind of fell into it, I never watched the UFC, I never watched boxing, I was never in karate, I didn’t know anything about it, just thought I was tough,” Alvey said.
“Eventually it was the XFL that I had my first amateur fight with, I reached out to them and said ‘Hey can I fight’, they said ‘sure’ and that’s what started it,” he said.
“I got beat up that first fight but went on a tear after that. I just liked it, I started watching the UFC and found out what it was about four or five fights into my professional career and then I never looked back.”
Alvey’s wife Britanny ‘McKey’ Alvey who won America’s Top Model has played a big part in his success, he said.
“I have been lucky in that she takes it more serious than I do. I mean, she watches video, she game plans, and knows what she is talking about and she corners more than just me, as well.
“She is very good at it and [I am] blessed to have her apart of my team.”
Henderson a big influence
Another key figure for him was Dan Henderson, a UFC hall of fame fighter.
“If you ever see me fight, you know I have a very similar style to him. It’s because of him, it’s because I have been punched in the face so many times by him,” Alvey said.
“It’s because I have been taken down, ground out, and just beat up so many times by him. I have been able to really adopt a lot of things that he does and make it things that I do.”
“Hendo (Dan Henderson) he has only been in my corner once, I will probably have him again because he was really good as a corner,” he said.
Alvey said his children will be watching the fight and be sure that his daughter will be giving him tips before the fight.
“My family always comes, just from the beginning they have always been there so I’m going to keep them coming as long as I can afford it,” Alvey said.
“They love it, they watch me train all day. My little girl always goes, ‘OK daddy, go and punch your friends in the face.’
Even though the fight hasn’t happened yet, Alvey is already looking to the future afterwards.
“I’m always looking ahead, I might not know who I want to fight yet, but I know what I want to accomplish,” Alvey told Humber News.