MMA Plus caught up with TMT, UCMMA and new Fightstars welterweight champion Alex “Da Kid” Lohore to talk about his domination of the domestic scene in 2016, his recent signing to BAMMA and of course his ongoing feud with BAMMA veteran Nathan Jones.
Hours after Lohore (10-1) won his third domestic title by defeating Harry Marple via 2nd round guillotine choke at Fightstars Championship 8 it was announced that he had inked a deal with BAMMA.
“I was signed by BAMMA after the Josh Collins fight but nobody knew. Winning that fight opened so many doors for me and after the fight I was looking to get another one in before the end of the year and the fight wit Marple came up.”
“In my head I knew it was the perfect fight for me at this stage in my career as I just signed for them and beating someone who had fought on BAMMA a few times would be a good way to announce my arrival there.”
The news that “Da Kid” had signed a multi-fight deal with the top European promotion was the culmination of a highly successful 2016 which has seen the 27-year old add the UCMMA and Fightstars welterweight titles to his ever growing collection, achievements that have come as little surprise to the New Wave Academy trained fighter.
“The joke is there is still a lot you haven’t seen yet, I’ve just shown you little bits, you haven’t seen the real stuff yet [laughs]. Who do you see right now in the welterweight division that is more comfortable as me in every area. Put me on the ground I’m fine, put me against the cage I’m fine, standing I’m fine. Its not me showing off but my performances show that I’ve been working hard, that I have a great team behind me and everything we are working on is paying off.
With his debut looming large on the horizon Lohore’s attention has now shifted to adding BAMMA gold to his resume and settling a much talked about score with fellow welterweight “Mr Bag N Tag” Nathan Jones.
“My rivalry with him [Jones] was friendly at first. It all started while will both where fighting on the old Fury MMA promotion. I had won my professional debut and at the time Nathan was the person who was the champion. So me as a fighter who was looking for the belt I called him out and said lets have a fight, it was nothing personal it was only because he had the belt.”
“I even spoke to him afterwards to let him know it wasn’t personal we’re both professionals, lets just have a fight and see who win. I thought he understood and at first everything seemed cool but then I kept on seeing him throw little digs at me on social media saying things like I wasn’t experienced enough. I said to him fair enough I’m going to keep doing what I’m doing and eventually we will meet.”
The once friendly rivalry between the pair would soon turned sour after Lohore claimed that Jones poked fun at him after he suffered the only defeated of his professional career to date.
“I suffered the only loss of my career to Carl Booth at Rise of Champions 1 and I went on Facebook and saw him taking more digs at me. It’s not nice when you lose a fight to go on social media to see another fighter having a dig at you because you lost a fight. I can’t remember exactly what he said but it was something like how can this guy be talking about fighting me when he gets knocked out in 30 seconds. After that I lost respect for him.”
Lohore claims that despite the inappropriate digs level at him he would continue to mostly ignore the man called Mr Bag N Tag until the Team Titan trained fighter made a threat to make the rivalry psychical.
“I would just ignore him but then he threatened to give me a slap and at that point I said ok cool. Every now and again I train at Fight Science Gym in Aldershot with UFC fighter Bradley Scott and Dean Amasinger who coaches us. Sometimes he [Jones] comes there to teach a kids class and one day after my training session he came up to me and shook my hands then left which caught me off guard considering he said he wanted to slap me.”
What followed was the now notorious incident that was captured live on Lohore’s Facebook live stream, but the proud Parisian, come Londoner feels that his potential future opponent has used the meeting to paint him as the bad guy.
“Now for the record when I approached him he was not teaching the kids. He keeps trying to spread lies around, trying to make it look like I stopped his session which is totally false. The kids where off to one side and I called him over and said to him, didn’t you say you was going to slap me and he was acting all funny, saying things like I don’t fight for free. It was nothing too serious but his acting like I called him out in front of the kids which isn’t true.”
Following both welterweights winning their respective bouts this month and the news that BAMMA will make its first to trip to the SSE Arena in Northern Ireland for their next show Alex “Da Kid” is likely to make his promotion debut in front of Irish fans and he knows exactly who he wants to meet when he enters the BAMMA cage for the first time.
“I told him cageside after he beat Walter [Gahadza] that I was next but he told me to get in line as his had 5-fights on BAMMA and I can’t just come here and fight him, I need to earn it. To be honest I don’t think he wants it with me but he knows he can’t avoid me forever so he should just accept that we are destined to fight so we can get it on, hopefully at the SSE Arena on