When UFC veteran fighters put on a grappling seminar during their trip to visit with American troops, they learned that our servicemen and women truly know how to hold their own.
UFC fighters, Sam Alvey, Diego Sanchez, Joe Lauzon, and Jake Ellenberger put together a grappling match against some of our nation’s soldiers stationed in Iraq ahead of the Independence Day celebration. The competition gave the UFC fighters a chance to find out a little of taste of what our troops can do — and safe to say it was a humbling experience for all involved.
Alvey, in particular, had great things to say about the event during an interview with TMZ.
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“We were thrilled to be there,” he said. “It’s not very often that someone gets to go and do something so cool.”
Alvey also admitted that he has tremendous respect for our servicemen and women saying, “They’re all tougher than I’ll ever be, just for what they do and what they’re willing to sacrifice.”
Alvey added that in doing this he felt like he was contributing adding, “I’ve always said that the biggest regret in my life is that I never served. I wasn’t serving, but it felt like at least I was doing something.”
He also remarked on the skills of the soldier who — while fighting a war — were able to get in the ring with them and grapple in mixed martial arts fighting. “As far as the skill in terms of jujitsu and rolling,” Alvey continued, “We got to roll with a lot of them. There were some studs out there.”
He admitted that one particular soldier was able to get the jump on him.
“Yeah! Someone even caught me!” Alvey laughed. “They all lift. They all lift a lot. And so Joe and I and Diego and Jake a little bit … Diego didn’t play with anyone, Diego went in there and took heads … the rest of us played a little bit. And those guys, these military boys, did not play.”
Speaking about the one soldier who was able to put him in a choke hold, Alvey said, “One of them just kind of grabbed me and, he grabbed my head. It’s one of those where I probably could have gotten out of it, but I didn’t want the sore neck for the next week, so ah ‘take it, take it.’”
“So did you tap?” he was asked by a TMZ reporter.
“I tapped, I did,” Alvey admitted. “It was some bear of a man. I’m glad he is on our side.”
See Alvey’s interview below:
It is truly epic to see some of our nation’s finest go head-to-head with professional UFC fighters. The fact that the fighters went to celebrate Independence Day early with the troops and give them some amazing performances and even engage with them in a grappling match just shows how honorable these men are.
See a clip of the grappling match below:
The fighting men and women of the United States military can go up against just about anyone in the world — and that includes professional fighters from the UFC.
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