Interview: Joe Trevino

“Win or lose I don’t see this going 5 rounds…”

Joe Trevino

Interview by: Barry Laminack

The last time we talked with Joe Trevino he was getting ready for his first fight against Steven Ngo at Lonestar Beatdwon Dallas back in February (a fight he won via RNC in the 2nd round) . That was early in 2010 [February to be exact]. Since then Joe has built up a 3-1 record (1-1 in title fights). Up next on the agenda for Trevino is a rematch against the newly crowned Garcia Promotions flyweight title holder Jacob Silva. The two get set to fight once again on September 2nd, 2011 at the Humble Civic Center (You can get tickets HERE). If the rematch is half as good as the first fight, this one will be worth the price of admission.

Trevino is young in his career, but is a very mature fighter. He’s calm, strong and very well rounded. I caught up with him before one of his training sessions and we talked about how he’s progressed over the last year and a half, and what’s in store for him in the future.

TCD: Man, it’s been for ever since we’ve talked with you Joe.

Joe: Yeah, back in 2009 I think. [Actually it was Feb. of 2010… I looked it up]

TCD: A lot has happened since then.

Joe: Yeah, I’ve had 4 fights.

TCD: And a title fight.

Joe: Actually this will be my 3rd title fight coming up.

TCD: That’s right. I forgot about your title fight in Louisiana.

Joe: Yeah, that’s the one I lost.

TCD: That is your only loss right?

Joe: That’s it.

TCD: So what has changed with the Joe Trevino we talked to then up to now?

Joe: A lot of experience. At first I didn’t know what I was doing. Literally when I first started, Bob put me with the girls.


Joe: Yeah. There were these two chicks in the class that were really good and he had me with them teaching me how to kick, punch, throw combos and stuff. Everybody thinks they know how to fight until you get in the gym and somebody pieces you up.

A lot has changed with my ground too. I’ve always been comfortable on the ground, even when I was in the military that was my thing. I always ended up on the ground, some how, submitting somebody. All I knew was arm bars and a triangle.

But now being at a school and having a set schedule has really elevated me a lot.

TCD: What would you say you’ve improved the most in?

Joe: I would say standing up. Also being comfortable in the transitions from the ground to standing. Believe it or not man, you don’t realize how much you are working on the ground until you stand up. You’re using muscles that you don’t think you’re using, then when you stand up your arms are heavy, your legs are heavy and you’re breathing heavy.

TCD: In all the fights you’ve had so far, what is the biggest single lesson you’ve learned from any fight? What fight was it and what did you learn?

Joe: It was my first fight and it was learning about adrenalin. I felt like I was fighting for like 10 minutes in the first round. I had the dude in the clinch and I was kneeing and every time I landeded a knee to his sternum he would grunt so I kept going. I watched the video later and it was maybe a minute and a half of fierceness and then it just went to crap.

In the second round he tried to do a judo throw and gave me his back so I ended up getting a body lock and put him to sleep.

I also learned a really good lesson from my title fight loss. Not to be so comfortable on my back, because I am (even when I fought Jacob [Silva]). I don’t want that to be my fall back. So I told Bob [Perez] that I want my first reaction to be to scrap and to fight. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve never knocked anyone out, but everyone tells me I’m strong for a small guy. I’ve hurt some people but never a KO.

TCD: Do you care about getting a knock out? Is that a goal?

Joe: No. I want the fight to end. I don’t want any more decisions.

TCD: Your upcoming fight with Jacob Silva is a rematch. What do you take from the last fight going into this fight? Are you going to use the same game plan? Do you change anything?

Joe: I really just try and do me. He’s a wild dude.  He’s got a lot of energy and he bounces around a lot. He didn’t really hurt me at all last time. Anybody has a chance on the ground and anybody can get knocked out, and that goes both ways.

I do feel like I’m more technical than him.

In the last fight everybody said I was on my back the whole time. They don’t realize that while I was on my back, I had his back. So yeah, I was on my back, but I went for submissions. I went for an arm bar,  a triangle, an omoplata and a rear naked.

TCD: Did his energy and cardio have an effect on you?

Joe: When we were standing up was my down fall. I was really tired. I was more tired than him being strong. It’s not that he was getting my tired, my cardio was crap.

TCD: How is it now going into this fight?

Joe: Great.

TCD: Is that something you’re going to try and match? That being his energy and cardio?

Joe: No.

TCD: This is your first 5 round fight right?

Joe: Yeah, but I don’t think it’s going to go 5 rounds. Win or lose I don’t see this going 5 rounds, but I’m going to have to be caught slipping really bad to get submitted and he’s going to have to catch me solid to knock me out.

TCD: Do you have a prediction?

Joe: No. I don’t flip out about these fights. I don’t lose sleep over it. I mean, a fight is a fight. My wife always asks me why I’m so calm.

So my prediction is, I’m going to win. How? I don’t know.

TCD: How’s your camp going?

Joe: I have a better camp this time around. I have been able to spend more time the gym since I changed careers. I’m here longer and I’m able to do 2-a-days.

TCD: He’s done a lot of talking since y’all last fight. Does that bother you at all?

Joe: No. Not at all.

TCD: I asked you about that before. Do you remember what you told me?

Joe: No. What.

TCD: You said, “if that’s what helps get him fired up and ready to fight, so be it.”. Does it really not bother you in the least little bit?

Joe: No. I’m cool with everybody. I went up to him after his fight with Manny and shook his hand. Before the fights I guess he likes to talk. It just doesn’t bother me, I just have some much other stuff going on in my life. It doesn’t get under my skin at all.

I’m not scared. He puts no fear in my heart.

TCD: He compared himself to Urijah Faber before; any thoughts on that?

Joe: I remember reading that and I thought, well if you’re the Urijah Faber of Houston MMA, I’ll be Jose Aldo.

TCD: You train with a lot of talent here at 4oz. Sometimes if you’re not one of the top dogs at a gym it can really help you, but sometimes it can hurt you. How does it work for you hear?

Joe: It helps me a lot. These guys know how to not use their weight and strength to over power me, but rather they use their skill to let me work.

Say for example I shoot in on Daniel [Pineda]. No damn way am I going to take him down, but he will let me grab a leg to work.

It’s really humbling training here. Nobody walks around with their chest out beating on it. We’re all really humble hear and we’re all about teaching each other and learning.

TCD: What’s the time table for you to go pro? Is there one?

Joe: No. I’ve got so much stuff going on that I’m taking it fight by fight. Even if I do good that doesn’t mean I’m going pro. I feel like to go pro it’s a whole other level of dedication, and I don’t want to go pro too soon. I’ve seen that before. Plus there are only a few 25’ers in the state of Texas. I’ll probably have to go to Oklahoma and other places.

I don’t want to put anything on the back burner as far as school, work or family to go pro because I would feel like I’m being selfish. I might get injured and I wouldn’t be able to do anything. It is dangerous. I mean, we all do it and everybody does it well, but you never know man. It doesn’t stop me from doing it, but it is in the back of my head.

TCD: You used to be an underwater welder. What are you in school for now?

Joe: C & C machining. I didn’t have a lot of room to grow in my previous career, unless I wanted to spend months at a time off shore. I was in the military for 8 years so I’m tired of being gone! I want a job in a 15 to 20 mile radius of my house.

TCD: The career change. Was that for family or fighting?

Joe: It was for my family and for my sanity. I used to work in Channelview and I live in Katy. I had to drive over there a lot. It took a toll. Everybody thinks the money was great, but only if you work off shore. Even then it’s like any other hourly job. If there is no work, you’re not getting paid.

With this new career, I have room to grow and that was my main reason. That and the weather sucked. No matter what the weather was, you were in the water working, freezing or sweating. A lot of the time you couldn’t see, so you did everything by feel.

You really have to like it. I did it for 4 years. I saw guys that did it for 20 years and they are still doing the same thing I was doing at 4 years. I was like, I don’t want to be that guy. I want to be a supervisor or manager. It’s just like fighting in that I want to grow.

TCD: What has it been like working with Made to Win?

Joe: Brett [Boyce] is a really good guy. He has your back no matter what. He’s done a lot for me already and I kind of feel like I’m taking advantage of him because I’m not getting paid.

TCD: Anybody you want to thank before we wrap it up?

Joe: Yeah. First I want to thank you for putting all this out there and giving a crap about interviewing us, and me personally. Mike at TXMMA does the same. All you guys are really cool and I really appreciate everything.

I also want to thank all my guys at 4oz. Bob and Jeremy, Daniel, Steve Garcia and Jesus. These guys really care and put the time in to help try and get me to the next level.

Brett from Made to Win.

My family for giving up their time. Clarrisa, Giselle and Joseph.

Also to Mick Maynard and Eric Garcia for giving me the opportunity to fight on their cards.

If I forgot anyone, I’m really sorry!

TCD: Thanks for your time Joe. Good luck.