Eddie Alvarez believes Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship is the perfect place to compete in the type of fights that have made him a fan favorite for more than a decade.
Not long after announcing his departure from ONE Championship, the former Bellator and UFC champion revealed that he was signing with the bare-knuckle fight group alongside fellow UFC veteran Luke Rockhold. ‘The Underground King’ is scheduled to make his promotional debut on April 29 when he toes the line with another familiar face in Chad Mendes.
Before knuckling up at BKFC 41 next month, Alvarez spoke with TMZ Sports and delivered some insight on what drew him to the fast-rising promotion.
“Dave Felman, the promoter, he’s a Philly guy and we’ve always spoke,” Alvarez said. “Even outside of fighting, we spoke and when he started BKFC I was a free agent, but it didn’t work out at that time. Now it’s kind of made a splash. A lot of attention’s going there. I went to a show a couple months ago and I was hooked. The show was high pace. All gas, no breaks. It’s exactly like my fight style. Mimicked my fight style perfectly.
“I don’t think fans want to tune in to see me wrestle. They damn sure don’t tune in to see me do Brazilian jiu-jitsu so why not cut the fat and get right to the meat and potatoes.”
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Eddie Alvarez Learned a Lot Just By Attending a BKFC Event
Anyone who has competed in, or even watched a bare-knuckle event knows how quickly damage can accumulate. It’s not a matter of if you will get cut, but when. Eddie Alvarez, a fighter who is no stranger to the taste of his own blood, recognizes the importance of fighting with damage and protecting one’s self in such a brutal environment.
“There’s a little of little subtleties that I learned when I went to the event myself. Usually, you get cut about a minute or two into the fight. Typically there’s a cut so you gotta learn how to fight with that. Especially like, I have scar tissue. Chad’s gonna have scar tissue. A lot of the older fighters do. Cuts open up fairly quickly. There’s even smaller margin for error and it’s a sprint. It’s not a marathon. You need to be ready when that bell rings. There’s no feeling out process.
“On top of all that, the punches you throw, you’ve gotta watch the way you throw punches because you’ll break your own hand. There’s no wraps. There’s no cast. There’s no way to cast your hand in a way to protect it. The shots that you throw need to be calculated in a way where you don’t hurt yourself.”
Some fighters may struggle with their own mortality in a fight, but that has never been a problem for ‘The Underground King.’ Engaging in some of the most memorable wars in Bellator and UFC history, Alvarez feeds off the blood and brutality, making BKFC the perfect fit.
“Some guys will be world champs, undefeated, never seen their own blood and when they do, you get to see the b*tch in them real quick. You need to see your own blood a few times in order for it to not upset you or get emotional about it. I’m very familiar with my own blood. I know what it tastes like. What it smells like. Oftentimes I don’t feel like I’m in a fight until I’m cut so I’m fine with it. I’m okay with it and I’m good with spilling some too.”