Sam Alvey is a mixed martial artist who competes in the UFC Light Heavyweight division. The Team Quest fighter has nearly 50 fights under his belt and is one of the most experienced fighters on the UFC roster.
Sam Alvey:Man like how uh, how have you been? Obviously, since your last your last fight, how have you been doing, I’ve been doing well, keeping busy training pretty hard, just just healing up as best as I can yeah talk about. I guess, because you you went into that, that fight with a lot of people don’t know this. You went into that fight with a little knock. Didn’T you, you had like a hand, injury yeah. I broke my hand about three weeks before the fight. So there’s a rough end of my camp encounters a long camp though so I I was gon na. I was never thinking about pulling out of the fight, but it definitely definitely hindered the last little bit of my my training so so, where you at now, with your recovery on that, are you good to go? Are you cleared or no? I think I think my clearing room, but the next x-ray is next Friday. I think you see the next Friday or today I hope this next Friday. So so what is next? I mean you know obviously you’re going through a little skid here, but you are a veteran you’ve been around if you fought almost 20 times, if not 20 times now in the UFC. What is it next? Do you want to stay in the UFC? Are you looking elsewhere what what is next? No, I hope to fight for another 12 years and I hope every fight is in the UFC. I I love the UFC. I love the way they market their fighters out of the way they treat their fighters and I’m hoping to stay with them forever. So my next fight should be with the UFC, but I better win that one. If I want to stay with the UFC insulins, I’m gon na be training with with the purpose you you’ve been training a lot with Dan Henderson and you and you coach, alongside and what’s it like, having a guy like that with you day in day out, yeah Dan Henderson he’s just him he’s second to none he’s the best in the world and has been for a long time. He’S he’s so much wiser in the sport of MMA than me. I’M just trying to try and remember everything he says so I go off and start my own gym somewhere. I can, you know, just steal everything from him. What’S the so so what was it like competing in an empty arena like it just seems so odd. As someone who’s been a fan of the sport for so long, it seemed very contender series like, but for someone who’s had over 50 fights. What was it like? Is it the first time for you to do that? No, I’ve actually done it before I. When I to fight to get into the Ultimate Fighter house, it was at Mandalay Bay, we they stood us up in huh or we fought in front of nobody. I mean an arena filled with nobody, so I’ve done it once before and it’s fun I mean when you fight the noise. The audience is always it’s a little bit of white noise. So you hear it, but you don’t really focus on it. It’S when you’re fighting with knowing it’s kind of the same way. It’S a silent white noise where you came to here, there’s no noise, but you don’t really notice it. So it was. It was alright. You hear the corners a little better. You hear that the commentators more, but it’s alright. That decision was very controversial. I mean I think, a lot of people had it going either way. Did you have a chance to rewatch it yeah? I watched the next day as I was flying home. I I thought I wanted the cage I watched and I still think I won and then, if you look at the actual punch count, I don’t think I’ve ever out thrown more strikes an opponent ever and I oh, I threw far more land and far more it Was I I think, I think at least two of the judges got it wrong, but I it’s my fault first, no, I you know the saying, don’t let it go to the judge hate the saying, but I do understand it. If you’re gon na leave it into somebody else’s, you know hands your leaving their hands, so I should have hit them a little harder, a little sooner yeah. It’S. It’S obviously been a you know. A topic of discussion. I guess in martial arts is judging a lot of them or don’t have an MMA background. Do you see that as something you’d be interested in doing here, and how would you get like fighters or people who have who have fought in there as judges or as referees to kind of understand what the fighter is going through yeah? I I think I would like to see it done. I mean, if you have a you know the guy who’s fought before he doesn’t mean he’s gon na, be a good judge, and you know if you have a guy, he hasn’t fought before it doesn’t mean they’re gon na be a bad judge, but I do think, Knowing that chokes don’t hurt, i knowing that jokes aren’t they’re uncomfortable you’re kind of stuck in a choke, but they don’t hurt. It’S don’t credit them like getting punched. I think somebody who understands that a little bit more it would make for a better judge that and that you know I don’t know what that was yeah, but yeah, so so judge the judging me. I would love to see more experienced judges and they’re people that have done it, people that better understand when something hurts when something doesn’t hurt. When it’s just control, as opposed to hate me, I I would be a bad judge, because I I would underscore jiu-jitsu big time for me to get sue you’ll get scored at the cap. If you don’t, have it didn’t hurt, that’s I mean that’s just you get sue if it hurts you’ll tell you can use it. As can you know, control points if I’m just laying on somebody on the canvas who’s banging somebody on the cage or if I have an attempted arm bar, it’s I’m controlling them, but in no way am I am I being submitted because if I was being submitted At L, so we talked a little bit about, I guess your injury and and your clearing. If everything goes well, when do you want to get back in there? I know it’s June. Let’S say 87 of quarantine say. Oh, I guess August would be great. Give me plenty of time to fight to heal, up, to fight the train, to put together a camp. I I’m really ready whenever the year and that’s always been the case. Much to my you know, i I’ve I’ve made a couple bad decisions. You know just saying. Yes to fights on short notice, but I’m SR if they were called so hey. We need you to fight Island. Two weeks from now said: yeah! Okay, let’s do it yeah fight island looks amazing. Oh, what are your thoughts overall? I guess, on the UFC kind of jumping the gun or being that early early early guys to go ahead and create this. You know you get fighters back in the cage as a UFC fighter as opposed to a fan. What it what’s your thought. Obviously you were the first fight back, so you must have been all for it. Yeah yeah, god bless the UFC. People want to work, people want to work, they just get out of the way and let work and the UFC just showed it can be done and said we can work, we can work safely. We can do in a way that doesn’t affect anybody. You know negatively. Even my card that had Jacare show up with the flu that the fire HECO bit of and they caught it. Nobody got sick outside of who use. You know outside of him and it was taken care of, so it was in the UFC just led the way they showed he can be done if the UFC can do it if a multi billion-dollar multinational corporation – and it fights like that, you know the donut shop Down the street can do the same thing yeah for sure I mean a lot of money, went into that testing. What was it like? Getting a getting things shoved up your nose yeah, I had it done twice so the first one wasn’t bad. It was like yeah. It’S uncomfortable, I don’t know, then the second one which is two days later. I thought it was gon na, be the bout the same feeling and it wasn’t it damn near, killed me suck it up there I mean, like immediately. I was coughing all over the lady. I was leaking on my eyes and my nose was like whoo, uncontrolled it caught me off guard the second time you say done it once fine. She thought it was hilarious. So heats up. My nose like it’s still talk is I’m so sorry. She she thought it was hilarious, they had the face, mask and shield saw it. So hopefully I didn’t cough honored, but I was coughing at her pretty head, so you’re someone who’s early on in your career, even even up until a couple years ago you stayed busy. Obviously, the past year, fast, 15 months or so you’ve had some people pull out on you and then the coronavirus. What’S the mentality, I guess, and why do you like staying active, I only get paid when I fight yeah, I’m in a train, no matter what I might as well have a payday at the end of the rainbow I’d just keep keep pushing forward to keep trying To get better with every day and get paid at the end, so the more I fight the more money I make, the more I you know I can can buy my house I can. I can secure my chill in the future a little better. That’S always been kind of my my goal, someone else who likes to stay active, especially the past like a year and a half or so is Gilbert burns. I the ranks and he’s fighting for the welterweight title. What are your thoughts on him and what do you? What’S your prediction on that fight huh, i i I’ve only I’ve seen Gilbert Burns last two fights, and that was all the only two fights I’ve seen he looks like he’s, got some power from what I understand he’s about the greatest jujitsu guy. That’S ever been is an interesting fighting him versus a newsprints big. He was kind of a born fighter, he’s great he’s better than most people, but he does that grinding style. His fight against Colby was about the greatest title fight I’ve ever seen. It was incredible. Love that fighter he he will, that should be UFC Hall of Fame worthy fight right there. Both of them should being the UFC for that, but outside of that who’s always been kind of a boring fighter for me. So to see somebody who might be able to counter his grinding style with some jujitsu and probably has heavier hands the newsmen exuse me he hits accurately, but I don’t think he hits hard like burns. Does so III, I’m I’m I’m excited for the fight I like to. I can’t wait to see see that one yeah me too. I’Ve been so excited for this, since it announced, and even of the three possible candidates like Jorge Masvidal Gilbert burns Leon Edwards at first. I was upset and then now that I think about it, I love it. I love the fact that their teammates have you ever had to compete against a teammate. No, but I had to fight my coach once when I fought Nate Marquardt. He was my coach on The Ultimate Fighter, so I knew him pretty well for six weeks and then I had to fight him in you know real life, and so that was that was the closest I’ve come and that was it was great. I love. I love fighting my friends. I like fighting my coaches. He and I we made some money that night together what son so so, obviously nickname smiling. How did that come about? I wanted to ask that I’ve been wanting to ask that ever started watching you fight. I smile a lot, I think my dad said at first we were kind of sitting around the kitchen nook and he started asking or we started just talking about it and he said well smile and saying the kind of rules off so okay. But I want an apostrophe in not a not an e and her, and I n8 now back when that came up, there was no social media or anything. This is a great idea now that there’s social media, the e everyone spells it wrong sort of harder fine. So it’s a mistake in that regard, but I’m gon na stand strong, I’m not gon na I’m gon na, not change it. I like it. I think I think it fits well. How do you stay smiling, like obviously even after losses and stuff like well, we’ll see you smiling and it doesn’t make sense? I’M like you should be sad, hey have you seen my wife, my wife is so hot there-there is no reason in the world for ya. I lost he gets to go home and I don’t know watch TV I get to go home to hurt and your most shoot, with the exception of this last fight, been in my corner over 70 times. So I always get to you know, look over and smile a little bit. Well, why do people don’t know this, but she won America’s Next Top Model. Is that correct, yeah yeah? She won cycle 11 of America’s Next Top Model, she’s more famous than I am still lots of reason to smile. Oh yeah, lots of reasons for me to smile. How did how did you guys meet at the Bristol Renaissance? Fair? We were. I was selling steak. Whole sake and she was selling a bodice. She was some bodies at the time and so uh her boss and a friend of mine introduced us, and that was 14 years ten months and today, seven days ago. So for people who, I guess, who aren’t necessarily familiar with other organizations, you know like they’re, like oh, the sport of UFC, what other organizations out there such as Bellator and one Fc like howdy? How do you get those organizations to grow to be as big as the UFC and do you think it’s good for the UFC to have some competition yeah, it’s great for the UFC, to have it’s good for everyone to have competition, and is you seen in Bellator And one of seeing pfl they’re making all the right moves. Bellator I mean they still Mousasi who’s. I I think you could argue he’s better than the UFC’s a85 champ. I love style bender, but Mousasi is he’s hard to argue if somebody’s better than him one I’ve seen they bought Mighty Mouse. So I think is the greatest with it fly: wait whose truck wants to get smaller to me who’s. The greatest fly. Wait, I put him in the goat. I think he’s he’s runner-up to GSP. As far as who, the goat is they steal him then you have, I mean you. Bellator is breeding some of the greatest fighters ever and pfl they’ve got this they’ve got the million dollar tournament. That I mean I talk to UFC guys and they almost want to get out of UFC to go fight for their million dollars. So they’re making the right moves, they’re, making names for themselves and the UFC will always be king. They will always be the biggest and best, but it’s so nice to see these other organizations keeping the UFC on their toes yeah. You hear guys like Henry cejudo John Jones, Jorge Moz we’d, all especially recently come out and complain about fighter pay and those are the guys at the top of the sport. It’S weird that you’re not hearing guys that are just coming in or guys that have fought, but I haven’t haven’t reached the level of John Jones or Henry cejudo. So what are your thoughts on overall, I guess fighter pay. I’Ve never been a fan of the will. Double your will double your winnings. If you win a fight, I hate that I think you should win the set amount, regardless of whether or not you win or lose because in this case of you, I guess in your last fight, you know you controversially, lost and lost its a significant amount of Money, so what’s your thoughts on that yeah, I would prefer not to have the win if you’re double it. If you win, I would prefer to be just a flat fee, but I say that, and I know, wouldn’t be the same flat fee. I know I wouldn’t be offered a flat fee up the same amount as if there’s the win-win bonus. So I will talk me. My UFC buddies, we’ll talk about what our cutoff is, what we would be willing to not take home if we could get a flat fee and it’s it’s everyone’s got their own number, but at the end of the day you still you still want to win, and I understand why they do that the windy they want to. You know what they want, that incentive for good fights, and I could see if people are gon na make you know just a flat fee. They may not fight as hard they might. They might know what they’re gon na do, but then you can budget. That’S where I I’d like being able to budget my life. I have no idea what I’m gon na make my next fight. It’S either gon na be X or it’s gon na be Y, and, if is why I can do this now, if it’s X, I can’t do this now, so that bank gets to be where the hard part is. But all of that being said, I think the UFC pays so well. I think they are they’re leading the world for a reason that they pay people very well. They hike people very well. They helped secure futures and presence for fighters. I don’t mean presents like Christmas. I they they help secure your present and the UFC. I mean nobody can argue with it. It’S all Bellator Bellator undercard fights for one-on-one, UFC’s, undercard fights for 12 and 12, and that’s going up, I mean when the UFC was first bought. I think it was like four and four um gray Maynard, I believe, was gray Maynard fought twice Frankie I guarantee made, I think, twenty thousand or twenty five thousand dollars something like that and now that’s unheard of. That’S like the second contract you’re above that, so the UFC is increasing what they pay fighters, that they’re they’re going leaps and bounds to try and take care of us and as far as pseudo or Jones, and all that they want more money. You know what they’re top of the game they they can ask for more money because they don’t ever have to fight again. I chose particularly he’s made millions upon millions upon millions of dollars. He doesn’t ever have to work ever again. So why not ask for more? I’M not trying to get get more out of it. If you don’t, you know if the UFC says no but say: okay I’ll just go home and enjoy my. You know my twenty five million dollars that I have right now. Yeah absolutely – and I think, like a lot of people like to compare it to boxing, but the UFC is a lot smaller than boxing hasn’t been around as long as boxing. So it’s hard to hair of John Jones to a Deontay Wilder like it’s. You know yeah yeah and I agree a hundred percent. I think I think what the UFC’s been doing and even with the you know, they’re they’re losing money on gates right now and they’re still paying people in full staff. They haven’t laid anybody off yeah and I think it’s. I think it’s amazing what they’re doing, and I think a lot of people tend to overlook that and just want to bash the USC. You know, especially in this world of social media, this so easy to to talk bad about somebody when you never gon na see him in the face. You’Re, never gon na. Look him in the eye. I mean at these people that rip on Dana White, they wouldn’t and Dana knows it, and you know he knows it. They would kiss his boots if they were to ever meet him and it’s it’s part of the game. We are all instructed that someone along the line tells us they listen. People are gon na hate on you, they’re gon na say mean terrible disgusting stuff, but they’re talking about you just keep them talking about you, whether it’s great or bad they’re. Talking about you, you will never talk about them ever again. You don’t know who they are they’re gon na be done with you, don’t click but they’re talking about you. So let them talk about you. So I’ll ask a couple more questions and then I’ll, let you go on one more UFC, UFC one, you, your veteran of the sport, your veteran of the UFC. Now is there one name where you’re like you know what, if I could have one last fight, this I’d have to fight this guy? Is there anybody on the UFC roster he’d be he’d, kill the fight? Oh, you know everyone’s scared of them, I’m not. Maybe I should be maybe I’m dumb for not being scared, but you al Romero. He is he’s just a beast and everybody is terrified of literally talk big about him and they say I don’t wan na fight him right now. He’S a scary, individual, very talented, hits hard better wrestle than most, and people are just terrified of them, but I’m not I. I think that would be such a fun fight to get ready, for it would be such a fun fight to beat to be present for and then, when I win, when I beat him, I mean imagine the betting odds on that. I wasn’t under behind spanners at for fights in the UFC. If you put me against you over Mara, I mean I would be minus ten plus ten thousand, it would be, it would be crazy, but he would be a really fun fight and what sorts of things have you been doing throughout quarantine, other than training, and obviously Must be nice to be back home with the family and not not having to to fight and stuff like that, but what sorts of things we’ve been doing? What what have you been watching on TV? Is there anything you’ve been doing to keep yourself occupied yeah we’re actually at the beach right now? If you can see so we’re out we’re gon na go catch them all. It’S a lake, not not the ocean. That’S no waves! I’M going to just go out there and try not to get sunburned wishful thinking, so you would just been now. I’Ve got a big family. We were always up to something we like hiking, we’re at the gym all the time we’re just enjoying ourselves, trying to get better baseball and my kids are all in dance classes, so that they’re just they’re enjoying all of it. Alright man, I thank you very much for the time I’m looking forward to seeing your next fight and wish you all the best, keep washing your hands and stay safe, hey. Thank you very much.