Former World Wrestling Entertainment champion and 14-fight MMA veteran Alberto Rodriguez — known as Alberto Del Rio during his sports entertainment tenure — will serve as president for Combate Americas.
The promotion announced the news on Tuesday. According to a release, Rodriguez “will be actively involved in all aspects of athlete relations and development, from recruitment to enhancing their showmanship skills.” Combate Americas recent signed a deal to air its events exclusively on UFC Fight Pass. Its next offering, ”Empire Rising,” will take place on Friday at Turning Stone Resort Casino in Verona, N.Y.
“I am excited to enter a new chapter in my career in combat sports, and to have the opportunity to spearhead the Combate Americas mission of delivering to fight fans everywhere, an authentic and first-rate Hispanic MMA product,” Rodriguez said.
While he might be better known for his WWE exploits, Rodriguez compiled a 9-5 record over the course of an MMA career that began in 2001. That included two bouts in Pride Fighting Championships, where he suffered losses to Mirko Filipovic and Kazuhiro Nakamura. Now 39, the man known as “Dos Caras Jr.” in his fighting career last competed at Cage of Combat 4 “Spanish Bombs” on Feb. 27, 2010, losing to Yamamoto Hanshi via second-round TKO.
“A storied fighter, with a following throughout Mexico and the U.S., Alberto brings a tremendous amount of knowledge of what it means to be in competition, coupled with an ability to communicate his passion for the sport, to his new role,” Combate Americas founder and CEO Campbell McLaren said. “From working with Alberto in the past, we have gotten to know him very well, and are thrilled to have him on our team in an executive capacity.”