By TXMMA Staff
Gracie Barra Woodlands’ MMA leader looking to start a new winning streak on March 14th
HOUSTON, TX, March 11, 2014 – This Saturday night Alex Morono seeks retribution. Facing Rashid Abdullah at the Texas City Throwdown, he will return to the cage for the first time since last November. It was then that Alex took on Oklahoma’s Rob Wood in a battle of up-and-coming fighters. He lost that bout by narrow decision and it doesn’t sit well with him.
“I don’t think anyone takes losses harder than me,” he says.
The last time after he lost (Jeff Rexroad, 2011) Alex sprang off three straight wins. He’ll look to begin another streak starting with “The Black Spartan” this Saturday. Here’s an update on what he’s been up to and what his frame of mind is like leading up to this bout:
Interview – Alex Morono (Gracie Barra Woodlands) – Texas City Throwdown
TXMMA – What’s up Alex. Thanks for taking the interview. How are you?
Alex Morono – I’m doing great man. This fight came at the perfect time; I’ve had a lot of fun in this training camp. Being a 3 year brown belt, I’m more now than ever on a quest in BJJ for the mysterious black belt and have had so much fun on the mats. I have learned a lot from Professor Alex Gotay and Fadi Kouri at GB The Woodlands, my HQ, and cross training at GB Westchase with Professor Ulpiano and am feeling on point with my grappling which is amazing because I plan on finishing this fight on the feet.
TXMMA – What’s new at the gym? Has your fight team been busy to start off the year? Tell us what’s going on over there.
Alex Morono – Our gym recently got new owners who are amazing and have put a lot of time, effort and money into the gym and now it looks as great as it’s performing. Our MMA team finished off last year at 6-1 and is coming into 2014 strong. We have 4 fights planned for March with Ricky Turcios and me fighting on this show. Chris Perez fighting in Michael Chase Corely’s Muay Thai Kingdom 2 card then Jake Heffernan fighting Quinten Kiper in Legacy Amateur Series which is going to be a crazy awesome fight. Jared Chaffee from GB Mag is also competing in Corpus Christi so he’s been in the mix a lot lately. I know we will go 5-0!
TXMMA – You’ll be back on the cage on March 14th. How are you feeling heading into this fight with Rashid Abdullah?
Alex Morono – I know I always say this but camp has been going so well. With the MMA team having so many fights planned and the IBJJF just ending there has been so much hard competition training. I’ve gone back to my roots and have done a lot of Gi training and kickboxing and feel sharp everywhere. He looks like a strong guy but I feel like I’m more skilled on the ground and on the feet. Like every fight I’m taking this one extremely seriously and expect nothing less than a finish.
TXMMA – Did you watch his fight with Charlie at all? If so what did you think of that one?
Alex Morono – I remember reading the results on Facebook and was surprised with the strange outcome then I watched it on YouTube and skipped through most of it. It was really boring and being such an MMA fan I hate boring fights because I want the sport to be as popular as possible. When I take a fight I prepare myself for months that I’m about to throw down on some extreme levels and can’t stand when guys don’t engage. Only thing worse is when guys grapplef*** for the whole fight. If I wanted and uncomfortably long hug I’d go visit grandma haha. But seriously I didn’t get much from that fight. I’ll be in his face way more and am ready to throw hands or lock up a sub.
TXMMA – Now he also fought someone you’re familiar with in Travis Tooke on the same card you were on. Does seeing him twice help in your preparation? What did you think of that fight?
Alex Morono – I wasn’t able to watch the fight because I was warming up at the time and I’ve rolled with Travis and was surprised Rashid didn’t get subbed which goes to show how tough he is. That fact helped me prepare how hard it’s going to be to get the finish and has made training that much better.
TXMMA – You won 3 in a row before losing that decision to Rob Wood last November. What did you take from that and does is still motivate you now heading into this fight?
Alex Morono – Man I don’t think anyone takes losses harder than me. No matter the excuse it is 100% the fighters fault if they don’t come back victorious. Being confident is an extremely important mindset in this sport so when I lost it made me so mad at myself and demanded improvement. I learned a very important lesson in not fighting to stop people’s strengths but to violently play into my own. I had it in my head that Wood would only want to wrestle and shoot that I played a different game and wasn’t able to get into my rhythm. I’m more motivated now than ever.
TXMMA – How are you approaching things differently than you have in the past?
Alex Morono – Before every fight I get super pumped, ready to literally fight to the death and before the Wood fight I was so amped looking for the huge KO that I didn’t at all get to play my game didn’t set a good pace, learning an expensive lesson. I’ll be much more calm going into this fight (I hope lol, gotta get crazy on game day). But the anger seems to be more anticipation now and I’m just ready and excited for the match.
TXMMA – How important is it for you to win this fight?
Alex Morono – Any and every win is the most important thing in my life right now because my life is my fighting career. I’ll die before I allow myself to give up in a fight and will do everything in my power to come out victorious in any fight. I plan to make my professional boxing debut soon and will hopefully be able fight once a month. I want to stay as active as possible this year and get as much experience as possible.
TXMMA – How are you going to win this fight?
Alex Morono – Honestly if the fight stays standing I’m going to look for the KO and if he wants to try to make me down I have no problem looking for the finish off my back or on top. My BJJ game feels better than ever. I just always go for the finish. The only reason people watch MMA is to see a great finish, no one likes decisions.
TXMMA – Any last words?
Alex Morono – Shout out to Michael Chase Corley for getting me the fight! Thanks to everyone at Grace Barra The Woodlands, my home, thank you so much for being a part of the team and helping everyone train hard. Gracie Barra Westchase and Team Took for the always tough training. My family for all the support, especially my brother who does my website alexmma.com. Fighters check it out. And my sponsors 700pluscredit.com.
It’s going down March 14th!
Thanks for the interview Mike Calimbas, best photographer in MMA!