Note: This article has been transcribed from Amanda and Alex Hernandez’s interview. It has been edited for clarity. View video interview here:
Hey guys. I’m Amanda also known as Chica, from UnknownMMA.com. I’m here with Alex Hernandez who is a lightweight. He’s fighting January 19th against Cowboy Cerrone. How do you feel about it?
Fantastic. It’s a great opportunity, another chance to put San Antonio on the map. Build this legacy that we’ve got going on here at Ohana Academy North East and just further sharing the name of Ohana and myself. So I’m really excited about it.
How do you feel about having your third fight [within a year], your debut was just in March?
Yeah. It’s really exciting year 2018 has just been awesome. And we just keep screaming about 2019 popping off the year with a fight like Cerrone’s huge. So I’m super excited.
How do you feel about the matchup?
Matchup’s great. I’ll never worry about the matchups or the competition this a year round act so there really isn’t like a camp mode for me. A lot of fighters going to what’s called camp and it’s kind of where they start to diet, start to train and everything and for us is just year round so Cerrone, any other lightweight, it doesn’t matter is across from us. We’re ready to go.
Do you think that the weight cut, he’s coming down to 155. He hasn’t done that since 2015. Do you think that’s going to affect his performance?
Yeah, I don’t bank on it but I mean realistically I definitely do think that’s going to play a huge part. He’s only getting older and he’s only getting heavier and slower and so that weight cut’s not going to come off any easier. And again I like to maintain right around my weight, stay in shape. So for me cutting weight’s not even a factor and for a lot of guys that last month of camp is just cutting weight. So I think that’s going to be a big strain in his life and certainly play a toll come fight night.
So you’re from San Antonio, what’s the hardest thing to cut from your diet. I would think Mexican food.
Oh yeah I had to forego that before. I’ve already got those withdrawals and everything. Christmas was rough with the tamales right. I got I got a little too much Christmas cheer in me over the last 48 hours. I’ve been trying to flush that out, defog a bit but I’ve been able to step away a little bit from the San Antonio traditional meals and focus on some healthier, more whole foods.
Yeah yeah that’s good. So you graduated from UTSA. I think that’s really cool we have a UTSA Roadrunner graduate.
I’m in graduate school right now, I graduated in 2014. What year did you graduate?
Congratulations, I graduated in 2014. My undergrad, yeah.
Finance yeah, business finance. So that was fun. I guess I’ve grown up here pretty much. Majority of my adult life I’m just enjoying my life in San Antonio and so people ask about me moving and things but again I’m not really interested in that I got my family here. And I mean you know my biological family and then my my gym family and those guys are everything to me and so for me it’s more about proliferating MMA within San Antonio. And again putting us on the map. People ask me you know where you traded from I say San Antonio that like it’s freakn’ Neptune. They got no idea, yeah. So for me it’s a little bit bigger to represent.
Yeah yeah. So you opened this gym here and ya’ll have how many locations now?
We have three locations so one in Stone Oak, Jones Maltsberger, and then here on Nacadoches road, down this road by Madison.
That’s cool. Yeah. So how does it feel like being such a young, fresh fighter you debuted in March. You showed that you had your knockout power and then in the next fight you showed that you can go the distance. So how do you feel this new fight is gonna showcase your abilities?
Yeah it was a good balance and I’m excited about this one. Truthfully, I’m trying to go back to that first round knockout. I want that bonus, you get three checks, I’m not interested in the two checks, I want the three checks if that knockout bonus or that performance bonus. For me I’m trying to go out in this fight and make a huge statement like you said we kind of had the knock out power in the first one, the distance the second one and this one I want to solidify some good technique and wrap it up pretty immediately in the first or the second.
Yeah, I feel like this has a potential to be fight of the night on that card.
Yeah certainly. And just putting a big stamp in the fighting world by finishing you know in emphatic fashion and somebody like Cerrone who’s been a legacy and a household name for so long is a huge deal. So just trying to wrap ’em up sooner than later.
Yeah. So you’re on the undercard of T.J. and Cejudo So are you, I know you’ve mentioned that T.J. is one of your inspirations. Are you thinking he’s gonna finish it pretty quick?
Yeah I got my money on Dillashaw for sure. I was able to see him last week I just got back from California doing some work over there with a wrestling coach of mine and linked up with a few other guys and of course we always see him when we’re over there and he looks great. He looks ready to go and he’s always ultra confident and I’m confident behind him. I think it’s gonna be a great fight. Cejudo’s unique in the amount of wrestling expertise he has and being an Olympic champion, everything you know he’s got a lot prestige behind him but yeah I’ve got I got the utmost faith in Dillashaw coming through on that.
Who do you have for VanZant and Ostovich?
No clue to be honest. Yeah I don’t watch a lot of people in general in the UFC, I really don’t. There’s a few of them that keep track of and then a few they like to follow and kind of inspire me and everybody else I don’t keep much track of at all. I don’t watch anything of anything. Yeah I kind of get my own world but, dude I can’t even give you like a rough idea. Literally just shooting out, I got no idea.
Okay, so your timeline was initially to do a title shot in 2020. Do you think it’s kind of speeding up, you think maybe this in 2019 you might get it?
Yeah it looks good. I still think it’ll probably 2020 because certainly the higher you climb the more it kind of slows down in the sense of fight regularity. You kind of like have a little bit more break in between. And so I think I murk Cerrone in January. Spring, early Summer we have the next, I’m shooting for four fights. But the more I think about because this opportunity, it might only be three fights next year because again the distance between as you start to climb the top. More pieces are shifting and you got to kind of wait for your turn to get called but I think we get three big huge wins, maybe even four this year and the first fight 2020 is the title fight. So we have it by spring 2020.
So, yeah you’re in a really competitive division with some big guys.
Most competitive in the world and that’s kind of the whole entry into the UFC. You had to take what you can, so it didn’t really matter the opponent that they said because when you’re in a weight class this caliber it’s like dude, I just gotta eat whatever opportunity I can get I’m going to grab.
And that kind of needs to be the mantra for everything in life. So yeah you just got to seize moments in this in this division it’s way too, all these guys like me. You know we never play football, never played basketball, never played baseball: too small. And so what do you do, what do you do you get to that competitive sports like these and you just are training your whole life and then you’ve got a bunch of guys that are you know like 5’8 to 5’10 that are 170-190 pounds that are all just bunch of killers that they cut down their weight and they get down to the lightweights or you know, the welter, or even feather weights and things like that so, yeah ultra competitive, ultra competitive.
And so our website is called Unknown MMA so we like to feature things about fighters that other interviewers might not ask or, people might not know about you. Is there something that you would like for your fans to know?
Just pull out the skeletons right. I don’t know, I mean I feel like you know I do a lot of things to try to get on the inside like I got this vlog going on right now and so I’d love for people to check that out and get to know me a little better on the personal side and you know, if anybody got any questions feel, you got something up your sleeve feel free to shoot but I can’t think of any dirty secrets I got necessarily to spill right now but I mean just you know I do it for pure intentions, the fighting and I do it people and I’m trying to represent something bigger than me at the end of day and I love for people to follow that and check check me out, check my gym, check my people out more than anything at Ohana Academy and try the strength and conditioning, Iridium Sports Agency and then of course I’m @TheGreat155 yeah just check me out, see the vlogs see who I am, see who we are, how we operate and you get to know the story.
Okay, well thank you Alex thank you for taking your time.
I appreciate you.
For this and the shoot too.
Absolutely, thank you.
Alexander Hernandez and Amanda Sanchez
Follow Alex Hernandez on Instagram and Twitter @TheGreat155