When we started MMA Gospel it was our goal to give you the most in-depth coverage possible by not only featuring well known fighters but bringing you people from all different professions in the world of mixed martial arts (MMA). This would give you, the fan, a better all around understanding of the entire industry. One of our key focuses is on the young fighters who are about to become household names, the young guns if you will. We will be featuring one fighter a month as our Young Gun. July’s MMA Gospel Young is none other than Chris “The Assassin” Lozano (5-0).
Chris Lozano is the reigning North American Allied Fight Series middleweight champion with an unblemished record. He trains out of Strong Style Martial Arts & Training Center in Independence, Ohio and recently beat UFC veteran Jason Dent to capture the title at Fight Night in the Flats in Cleveland, Ohio. MMA Gospel reporter Ronald Young sat down with 20 questions for our first ever MMA Gospel Young Gun of the Month.
How did you get started with MMA?
I have been fighting my entire life. Mostly in my neighborhood, just to prove I could hang there. As I got older, my mother, who was a single mother, tried to figure out a way for me to focus my behavior in a constructive manner. I have always been a fan of fighting. When other kids were watching Ninja Turtles, I was obsessed with ninja’s and samurais while watching Blood Sport. That’s when I began training Tae Kwon Doe. I wanted to be able to fight exactly how I saw it on television. Boxing is a family sport, so I have always gotten pointers from uncles and brothers since I was I was born. I wrestled from the 6th grade till my Senior year. A lot of people don’t know, but I have a freestyle and Grecco Roman background. When I graduated, I knew I wanted to fight, but couldn’t’t find a MMA gym at the time. I began boxing, but I always knew as soon as I found an mma gym, that’s what I was going to do. I boxed for a couple years and then finally found Strong Style Martial Arts. The rest is history..
What made you realize you were good enough to go pro?
I felt ready to go pro right before I fought my last amateur bout. I remember warming up, being a bit nervous, but having an extreme amount of calmness. I knew then I was suppose to be fighting.
Which of your professional fights was your favorite? (or which one stands out the most in your head?)
Definitely the Jason Dent fight. It was my first fight out of the first round as a pro and that dude is definitely tougher than he looks. I learned a lot about myself that fight. It helped me to get better as a pro and gave me championship experience because it was title fight.
Who are your favorite fighters? (either pick one per weight class, or just fire off all
Jon “Bones” Jones, Anderson Silva, Jose Aldo, Brian “The Predator” Rogers, Paul “Semtex” Daley, Anthony “Rumble” Johnson, Stipe Miocic, Allan Belcher, Jessica “Evil” Eye, Cris Cyborg
If you had to fight the best fighter in the world in your weight class who would you say it was and what would be your gameplan? (you don’t have to give away secrets this is just a general question)
I would say the best fighter in the world at my weight class is G.S.P. My game-plan would be to use my striking to frustrate him. When he started using his wrestling, I would look for opportunities to submit him in the transition.
Too many guys wait to hit the ground to start fighting from their backs and that’s why they get controlled. I would have him frustrated because I would be constantly attacking.
If you weren’t an MMA fighter what would you be doing instead?
If I was not fighting, I’d be doing something that had to do with teaching children. I enjoy teaching children martial arts at my gym and I’d like to believe I’m good at it. There’s something about passing knowledge to children that really makes me feel like I’m contributing to something greater than myself.
If (the answer to question 7) isn’t a sport, what sport would you play?
Football all day!! Besides fighting, football is my favorite sport. I was a mean strong safety in my day and I believe, if I wasn’t such a knuckle head, I would’ve went on to play college ball and pro ball one day.
Who are your favorite sports teams?
I’m a die hard Cleveland Browns fan. Even though they suck more than any other team in sports history, being from Pittsburgh is still a problem around here lol!
Rank in order of greatness in your opinion the top MMA promotions (besides your own of course)
Obviously the UFC is number one. After that I have to say Bellator. I thought the welterweight tournament they put on was awesome and that style of fighting reminds me of Blood Sport the movie, how it was tournament style. WEC has really started putting on some awesome fights and producing some amazing lower weight guys. MFC in Canada has some awesome fighters on their list and of course there’s always King Of The Cage who has been a staple in MMA promotions since its(mma) conception.
Where do you see yourself in one year?
In one year I see myself finally getting to walk out of that tunnel. I see myself embracing a moment I always knew would come one day. I see myself in the UFC and I see myself winning.
In 5 years I see myself being a business. I see myself fighting, but also having enough knowledge of the game to also be a business man in the fighting world.
Given the choice of training with any camp in the world, what camp would you choose? (besides your own)
Right now, it would have to be Greg Jackson’s camp. I think they have some of the best guys in the world training there.
What’s your pre-fight meal of choice?
BRUNO’S- It’s a small Italian joint in the neighborhood, but if you want some good Italian when carbing up for a fight in Cleveland, I would definitely suggest Bruno’s.
What is your pre-fight song of choice?
Right now, my pre-fight song would be “Up All Night” by Drake. I like to play songs that get me feeling that rush you get when you here your favorite work out song. Hip Hop music is so different and always changing, so my walkout music always changes. But yeah, definitely Drake’s “Up All Night” would be the entrance music.
The week after the fight, what is your favorite way to unwind?
I like to soak up my family and friends as much as possible. Because of the demands of training and work, time to appreciate the other important things in life is greatly limited.
Although you appear to be blossoming into a bit of a knockout artist, what is
avorite submission and why?
My favorite submission is the knee bar. I think it’s an awesome submission and you can hit this submission from a lot of different places during a fight. I’m a huge fan of submission fighting. I look forward to the day I’m forced to really test my ground fighting abilities.
What is your favorite fight of all time, between any fighters?
These, “of all time” questions are hard to answer because there are so many awesome fights that have occurred. If I had to pick one it would be Jerry Quarry vs. Joe Frazier. Quarry gets crushed, but displays the kind of heart that defines a real fighter. He refused to be beat and Joe Frazier unleashed one of the most brutal and relentless attacks ever recorded. In my opinion..
Who are the top five pound-for-pound fighters in world right now?
Georges St. Pierre
What will be your method of victory in your next fight?
My next fight will be in August most likely. My opponent looks to be a good ground fighter, as well as being a good striker. My method of victory will be my opponents choice. If he stands up with me, I’ll look to knock him out. Should he look to take it down, I look forward to proving my Jiu-Jitsu is no joke.
Congratulations to Chris on being the very first MMA Gospel Young Gun.