San Antonio, TX – Fighting in his hometown completes a story for UFC flyweight C.J. Vergara who went from backyard fighting to the biggest MMA promotion in the world and now fighting at UFC San Antonio against Daniel da Silva on Saturday night.
“My first introduction to fighting overall was in high school. I had a backyard fight club, and it was about ten miles down the road that we were fighting in backyards every single weekend. At the time I was telling everybody that I was going to be in the UFC someday,” Vergara told reporters on Wednesday.
“So here I am in that full circle moment living out that manifestation and dream that I set out to in front of my hometown crowd. I have a massive following in San Antonio. When I go out and perform this Saturday it is going to put this city on the map. Having a fighter from the city coming up the way that I am, and bring the UFC back. Put me on the main card next time.”
Backyard fighting to professional fighting is a long journey, but Vergara believes now as he did back then in those backyard fights that he would be the guy to make it out of San Antonio.
“This is it. This is the stake in the ground. I told you I was the one,” he said.
Fighting at home with a large hometown crowd can also add a lot of pressure to a fighter who represents the city the way Vergara does. He understands the pressure, but also takes fuel from it.
“That is what brought me to this position I’m in right now. It’s because the specific pressure that comes with being a fighter…things go really good or things go as bad as they possibly can. For me, to step into the octagon here in San Antonio, and put everything that I’ve ever done and said on the line in front of everybody that I know and everybody that knows me…is exactly what keeps me up everyday,” he said.
“Honestly it keeps me up at night sometimes. Yes the pressure is there and the pressure is what keeps me improving.”
Watch the entire media day scrum with C.J. Vergara above. He takes on Daniel da Silva at UFC San Antonio on Saturday night.