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MMA4Real Interview With Undefeated Fighter Byron Bloodworth

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MMA in the southeast region is blowing up, and you can check all the posts we have covering fighters and events for the proof.  This weekend the Battle of Rome 8 event will be taking place at the Forum in Rome, Georgia.  The event is expected to be a sell out and Tapout sponsored Kimbo Slice will be in attendance.  We were able to catch up with one half of the main event in undefeated North Carolina native Byron Bloodworth(3-0).  Byron gave us his thoughts on his training, his upcoming match up, the bubbling Georgia/North Carolina rivalry, and what  he plans to accomplish in this sport.  Check it all out below as well as a video with an invitation to the fight and ticket information.

Kelvin Hunt: Byron, tell us a little about yourself and how you got involved in the sport of MMA.

Byron Bloodworth: I grew up mainly in NC.  I starting playing sports at five years old and played football and wrestled in High School. After finishing HS I played semi-pro rugby for two years for the Cape Fear Rugby club. A little known fact about me was that we went to the national tournament both years I played on the team. Just before I stopped playing rugby one of my friends told me about a BJJ school in the area and asked if I was interested in trying it out since I wrestled in the past. After taking just a month of classes I began to really do well against my training partners in my classes. Even though I only had a month of classes behind me I decided to go ahead and compete in some grappling tournaments. I did well in those so after three months of training I took my first ammy fight. After losing in just 40 seconds in my first fight I knew that to be successful I was really going to have to be dedicated and really take every part of the fight seriously. After training for an additional six months, I took my second ammy fight and have won every fight since then. I really didn’t expect to be a pro fighter when I started training, I think the early success in submission grappling and the dedication to training has lead me to be a pro fighter.
 
Looking back on when I got started, I remember watching the first UFC and just remember being completely intrigued and right of the bat I was a fan.  I grew up watching Pro Wrestling and that was entertaining but to watch a program like the UFC where it was REAL fights, I was hooked immediately.

Kelvin Hunt: Right on, but let's get right to it.  Now you are preparing to main event the Battle At The Rome 8 event in Georgia on January 23rd.  How has training been going and give us your thoughts on fighting in the main event?

Byron Bloodworth: My camp has been incredible. I am training with some of the top athletes in the 135/145lb weight divisions in Georgia. I’ve been training for 6-8 weeks to fight this month. I was originally supposed to fight at the end of the month and that fight fell through. Then we were pretty confident about another opportunity and that one fell through. So needless to say when Tony Metcalfe presented the opportunity for me to fight John, I knew that John was an opponent that wouldn’t back out so I took the fight. This is a fight that both John and I knew would eventually happen as we both have strong work ethics in the gym and our records allow for a great matchup.

As far as being the main event, it doesn’t matter to me. It sucks we have to sit there all night but I think it is flattering that people think enough of John and I that we are at the level to be the main event. It also let’s me know that all the hard work I’ve put in has elevated me to the main event level.
 
Kelvin Hunt:
All three of your professional fights have been in NC.  I know you've fought in Georgia before but it's been a while.  Give us your thoughts on fighting in Georgia and what are you expecting from the crowd?

Byron Bloodworth: I am excited to fight again in Georgia. Last time I fought in Georgia it was under the novice ammy rules in Georgia. I have grown a lot as a fighter since that last fight. It’s basically a BJJ match once it hits the ground in Georgia under the novice ammy rules and now as a pro fighter I can use all the elements of MMA in the fight. I have also met a lot of new people in Georgia since that last fight, I have coached at multiple schools and I am hoping to have a lot more support in the crowd this time!
 
Kelvin Hunt: You'll be facing John Quieroz.  Tell us what you know about him and how do you expect this fight to go down?

Byron Bloodworth: I know that John is a hard worker. He has a great wrestling background but is an extremely well rounded fighter. I know that he knows how to compete and he will come to fight. John and I trained together at Knuckle-Up and we always pushed each other in class, I don’t expect the fight to be any different. John and I are not enemies at all, we are just two hard working fighters ready to showcase our skills and put on a show for the fans, I just want to come out with the WIN!
 
Overall I expect him to try and take me down.
 
Kelvin Hunt: It seems as if there's a little friendly rivalry brewing between the North Carolina and Georgia MMA scenes.  I know several North Carolina based fighters have gone down to Georgia and represented.  Give us your thoughts on that and do you think it's good for regional MMA?

Byron Bloodworth: I am in a catch twenty-two in this situation. I have fought in both states and won in both. I am in the middle. My ties lie in both states. I am taking a back seat on this one because I have friends, family and training partners in both states. I don’t see the rivalry the same way as everyone else. My allegiance is kind of split between both states.
 
Kelvin Hunt: Haha...I feel you.  Now you fought twice in 2009, and you'll be getting an early start in 2010.  Preferably, how many times would you like to fight in 2010?


Byron Bloodworth: 2009 was kind of a weird year for me. I had a guy back out on the day of a fight and there long periods in between my fights.  I am hopeful that I can fight five times this year. I am glad I can get an early start on 2010 by fighting in January.

 
Kelvin Hunt: Also, since you are a professional fighter now.  What's your ultimate goal in this sport?

Bryon Bloodworth: My ultimate goal is to be able to compete for the title in the largest show. To be a world champ at 135 or 145 would be the ultimate success for me!
 
Kelvin Hunt: What type of advice would you tell young aspiring MMA fighters about the fight game?

Byron Bloodworth: Don’t rush your training. It's best if you compete in all facets of the MMA fight: BJJ, Wrestling, Boxing, Muay Thai, etc. Focus on good technique and be honest with yourself when it comes time to fight. It takes a lot of dedication to compete at a high level, if you commit to it then commit to it!
  
Kelvin Hunt: That's sound advice.  Any words of wisdom or anyone out there you would like to thank?

Byron Bloodworth: No real words of wisdom.
 
I step into the cage by myself but there is a team of people that help me get there and that support me. I would like to thank all my training partners, trainers and coaches.

I want to thank my managers at Sponsored Fan for allowing me to do what I am supposed to do; train and fight. Those guys handle the rest.

I also want to thank all of my sponsors: Wicked-Jitsu, Toe 2 Toe, Brawl Nutrition, Fitness Depot of Douglasville, Omega Attire, Redline Energy Drink and Born2Bang Athletics. For more information on these sponsors go to SponsoredFan.com.

Thank you for the opportunity to get the word out on my upcoming fight to the great people in NC and all the fans that visit MMAFORREAL.com.

Kelvin Hunt: Good stuff Bryon.  We appreciate the opportunity to speak with you and we'd like to wish you good luck in your upcoming fight.