SAN ANTONIO – San Antonio has a protracted boxing historical past however over the past twenty years, extra fighters and followers are taking on combined martial arts. With the brand new ardour, contributors are additionally turning on the tv and having fun with the competitiveness that’s the Final Combating Championship.
This coming Saturday, the Alamo Metropolis has a neighborhood fighter to root for.
Ray Rodriguez, who was born in San Antonio however attended highschool in Floresville, can be touring to Las Vegas to compete in UFC Struggle Night time 187. Rodriguez, who goes by “The Decide,” will face Rani Yahya in a bantamweight contest airing on ESPN+ Saturday afternoon.
“I’m going to be preventing a Brazilian jiu-jitsu world champion who has been within the sport for a very very long time,” Rodriguez stated to KSAT 12 Sports activities final week. “I’m trying ahead to exhibiting him what we have now been engaged on right here in San Antonio.”
“The Decide” has an expert document of 16-7-Zero with three knockouts and eight submissions. Identical to in boxing, the pandemic stopped a number of fights from occurring in 2020. Rodriguez fought thrice in 2019 however solely as soon as final yr.
“There isn’t any finish in sight so far as my profession,” Rodriguez defined. “All of my fights, I actually don’t take a number of injury. I transfer loads in my fights and I attribute that to my coaches. I plan going at this for a very long time, having the ability to be a full-time UFC fighter which is the elite, I’m proud to be a part of that alumni.”
Rodriguez has been preventing professionally for the final seven years. He’s additionally a United State Military veteran who had been station at Ft. Hood. It was throughout that service that Rodriguez, who reached the rank of Specialist, discovered a calling to combined martial arts.
“I used to be doing Combatives within the Military and I made all of it the way in which to the very best degree of Stage four Combatives and simply fell in love with it,” stated Rodriguez. “I used to be a Combative Teacher for 3 years at Ft. Hood. As soon as I completed my time period within the navy, I instructed myself I might go skilled and go all the way in which to the highest.”
The 33-year-old graduate from the College of the Incarnate Phrase, who completed faculty with a level in Kinesiology and minored in Vitamin in 2018, owns his personal gymnasium known as the Final Submission Academy, situated at 610 SW Navy Drive.
“After we opened this academy, there wasn’t many martial arts within the South Aspect of San Antonio, jiu-jitsu particularly,” stated Rodriguez. “We needed to make this cost-effective as properly. We lowered the costs of our memberships and we simply needed to open the doorways to those that might have needed to journey all the way in which to the north facet and even one other metropolis. We needed to position our stamp right here on the South Aspect, educate children self-defense, management, integrity and actually simply consider in themselves as properly.”
Rodriguez can be opening a second location quickly down in Floresville with a grand opening scheduled for April 1.
“To have the ability to be an expert fighter, to have this gymnasium as properly, it’s a gorgeous factor. It actually makes me joyful, I’m completely blessed to have the folks that I’ve round me. There’s no finish in sight, I’m wholesome, I really feel good and I simply wish to maintain going.”
Daniel P. Villanueva has labored with KSAT 12 Sports activities for over 17 years and is an award-winning sports activities producer. To submit story concepts, e-mail [email protected]
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