Vila: If You Stand with Me, You’ll Get Knocked Out

By Staff Sep 30, 2011
Alexis Vila did something no one else had been able to do when he knocked out Joe Warren on Sept. 24 at Bellator Fighting Championships 51.

Several opponents had hit Warren hard, but he always found a way to recover and usually win. The left hook Vila clocked him with, though, put Warren out before he hit the ground.

“If you keep it standing with me, this is what you’re going to get,” Vila told the Sherdog Radio Network’s “Savage Dog Show.” “All the time. I know that I have a good punch. I have a boxing background. I’m not scared to stand up with nobody.”

Vila also has a wrestling background. He won a bronze medal in freestyle at the 1996 Summer Olympics. For his part, Warren won a Greco-Roman world championship in 2006, but their season five Bellator bantamweight tournament opener involved little wrestling.

Vila rocked Warren early with an overhand right, and the finish came in just 64 seconds. The prefight chatter between the fighters lasted much longer than the bout itself. The way Vila sees it, Warren was not acting like a professional. Vila had some real animosity for his opponent, but he did not enjoy the follow-up punch he drilled Warren with before the referee intervened.

“I feel bad. I feel bad, but I have to do my job,” Vila said. “I have to finish. You never know. Joe, he’d never been knocked out like that. … Only the referee can stop [the fight]. This is what I learned because in my first fight, I punched the guy and the guy was out. I would not punch the guy again, and the guy got me with an armbar. So after that, I learned that I cannot stop until the referee stops. I never stopped again.”

Vila said he and Warren did not mend fences after the match.

“He left,” Vila explained. “He left and he never shook hands. He didn’t say anything. He left.”

In the next round of the bantamweight tournament, Vila will meet Marcos Galvao. He gets along with the Brazilian much better than Warren.

“I think he’s a very good fighter,” Vila said. “As a person, I like Galvao more than Joe Warren. I’m going to do the interviews and I’m never going to say anything bad about Marcos Galvao. We [are] friends. I helped him to make weight and everything. I told him over there [at] the tournament, ‘If we have to fight, no worry. We have to put on a good show. The winner is the best. Nothing personal.’”

Listen to the full interview (beginning at 1:29:25).


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