UFC on ESPN 8: Sam Alvey Feels He’s the Knockout Artist, Not Khalil Rountree Jr.

Sam Alvey UFC San Antonio
Sam Alvey Credit: Rodney James Edgar/Cageside Press

Sam Alvey is expected to return to action later this month at UFC on ESPN 8. Expected is the key word of course. We spoke to Alvey earlier this week, just as the coronavirus pandemic was hitting U.S. shores.

Smilin’ Sam wasn’t certain on whether the card was moving or not when we spoke to him. But he did confirm the UFC doctors had been in touch. “This morning we did get a message from UFC doctors saying ‘hey it might happen [the card moving], it might not. But if it does [move], Sam, you’re going to need a physical also.'”

That physical has nothing to do with the coronavirus, mind you. Rather, explained Alvey, it’s just a requirement of the athletic commission. Although even Vegas is potentially a no-go now, as Nevada has at least temporarily halted combat sports.

Alvey is fighting Khalil Rountree Jr., hopefully, in what Rountree has said will likely be his last fight. Alvey and his opponent have actually trained together in the past, sparring back when Khalil was fresh off the Ultimate Fighter. “I got to spar with him once, hang out with him a little bit. He’s a good dude, lot of fun,” Alvey recalled.

“Happy with the match-up” is how Alvey put this pairing. He’s coming off surgery for this fight. “My hand healed. I broke my hand. I actually got the call, I accepted the fight while I still had pins in my hand. So the pins came out, I’ve been able to hit, punch, do everything with it. It’s been a good camp!”

Whether he will try to knockout the knockout artist that is Rountree was the question. But Alvey, who seemingly has the edge on the ground, feels differently about that. “He is not the knockout artist. I am the knockout artist. I have over twenty knockouts in my career. I probably have more Muay Thai fights than he does, I’m 6-1 in professional Muay Thai.”

“I do feel my stand-up is the better stand-up,” Alvey continued. “That being said, he is going to kick the tar out of my leg. Because one, he’s smart, and anyone that fights me should try and kick my legs. For whatever [reason], there’s some trigger that doesn’t go off, I don’t check kicks. I leave most rings limping a little but, because I don’t check, and he’s got a great couple kicks. So I’m sure my leg is going to be black and blue come the end of the first or second round. But the knockout artist is my forte.”

We’ll find out for sure if the fight goes down as planned on March 28, as UFC on ESPN 8 goes down in Columbus, Ohio Las Vegas, Nevada. Maybe.

Watch our full chat with Smilin’ Sam Alvey below, as we also discuss UFC 248 and more!