Latino sports recently had the opportunity to sit and interview Jorge Rivera at his gym (Rivera athletic center) in Milford Massachusetts. Jorge is an American mixed martial artist from Milford Massachusetts known for his serious striking ability and his ferocity in the octagon. He began fighting in 2001 and retired from the UFC in 2012.
Latino sports: How many years have you been fighting and how did you get started?
Jorge: I started training in 1999. I was running out of options. I started to find myself getting into trouble. Training was a great outlet for me.
Latino sports: What’s the story behind your nickname El conquistador?
Jorge: I wanted to choose a name that represented my Latino ethnicity. (Puerto Rican) My brother got me the chainmail so it was an easy name to come up with.
Latino sports: What do you think the future holds for Latinos in MMA?
Jorge: Sky’s the limit! MMA is different from other sports because its accepted world wide. It’s not like boxing that has pockets of fans. It’s in the Asian market; the Latin market, the Russian market and the European market just to name a few. I would imagine Latinos will do fine.
Latino sports: What challenges have you faced as a Latino in MMA?
Jorge: No different than anyone else.
Latino sports: What are some negative stereotypes that you would like to address about the sport?
Jorge: I’m not really concerned about that anymore. The sport has been around long enough that people should be a little more educated at this point. That fight has already been fought a million times.
Latino sports: What are some behind the seen things that the fans don’t know about?
Jorge: Cameras are everywhere nowadays. I don’t think there is a behind the seen anymore.
Latino sports: What are your suggestions for people that would like to get involved in the sport?
Jorge: Shop around, check out several gyms. Research the instructor’s accreditation and lineage. Try a few classes and see if it’s right for you.
Latino sports: What can people expect to take away from MMA training?
Jorge: It’ll get you in great shape! Some of my female clients have told me that it gave them empowerment.
Latino sports: Thank you for your time today Jorge. Where should people look to learn more about you and your camp?
Jorge: Hey man anytime. Thank you for coming by. They can always check out www.RiveraAthletics.com
Interview by Julius Powell