Jim Alers will knuckle up with Luis Palomino for the BKFC and Police Gazette 155 pound championships. This main event bout goes down at BKFC 14 on Friday, November 13th.
The night of bare-knuckle boxing emanates from InterContinental Miami in Miami, Florida. These two were supposed to toe the line earlier in the year but Alers’ coach having positive COVID 19 test derailed that plan.
Below are several excerpts from my recent conversation with the undefeated bare knuckle title contender.
Being a guest at BKFC 12
“It’s always good to get to sit down to actually watch the show. I don’t think I got to ever watch a live Bare Knuckle fight until my first time fighting for them, I think at BKFC 7. Was flown out before also to go to the Artem and Jason Kngith fight, part two. And I just kind of fell in love with watching it and I haven’t really missed a fight since then.”
“It’s awesome. I get to just kind of interact with the fans, take those pictures, and let them know that I appreciate them all. Because honestly without them we wouldn’t have this show. So I definitely don’t mind taking pictures. I’ll take up to an hour taking pictures with everybody.”
The rich history of the Police Gazette belt
“I really am excited about that belt. It has history behind it. And I also love the fact that they don’t put it up for grabs for anybody. Luis Palomino, he fought for the 155 BKFC belt. I guess they decided there wasn’t a worthy enough fight yet for that belt. So it wasn’t up for grabs. I like that they just don’t put it up for anything. You have to really prove yourself. So I’m happy that they have decided that my fight is going to be worth it. And they’re going to put the belt up for grabs. You know I can’t wait to hang it up at my gym.”
Is this one of the more intense fight preparations that you’ve had in terms of things heating up with an opponent?
“If you think about it, if someone goes into the UFC and they could be an undefeated boxer, undefeated kickboxer, do everything they can outside of the UFC. Do you honestly believe that someone like that will get a title fight even though they won one fight in the UFC? No, they have to work their way up in that sport. It’s a different sport. So granted, Luis did a bunch of things in MMA. He fought some good people. But bare knuckle’s a different sport and I kind of felt that it was a bit disrespectful to not only myself but the rest of the roster. This guy just comes in has one fight and just jumps in line.”
Jim Alers vs Luis Palomino
Not seeming overly impressed with Palomino’s title-winning performance
“I mean if he would have lost or it would have been a hard fight, then I would have been very unimpressed,. But I was expecting him to win, expecting him to win pretty fast. This guy took a fight out on one week’s notice, cut a bunch of weight. So, of course he was going to get rocked and finished pretty fast.”
Grappling while concurrently competing in BKFC
“I want to be known as like a jack of all trades. Want to always be ready. I don’t want to wait around for the next fight. My first four fights in bare-knuckle, I fought four fights in six months. Even in between those fights, I still did grappling matches. I believe that if I stay ready, I can just be prepared for whatever.”
“I wish there was more opportunities. My last match, the guy decided for it not to be combat jiu-jitsu. But I have done combat in the past. I’m a combat jiu-jitsu champion for the organization Combat Night. It is so much fun. Knowing that I can use my jiu-jitsu. And a lot of times it’s jiu-jitsu guys aren’t quite sure if they want to make that transition to MMA. What happens a lot is that they’re just trying to do jiu-jitsu and they’re forgetting you can hit.”
Thoughts on Artem Lobov’s combat sports future
“I don’t really have any desire really to face him. He’s done with it…Just really in it for the payday. I think he had a three-fight contract. So I’m not sure if he’s really going to come back. I think he knows it, and I think really the rest of the world knows that he’s just an average fighter. I think he has a losing MMA record like 14 and 16 or something crazy like that. So, I want to fight the best in the world. Not someone who has his name because you know they’re riding off Conor McGregor’s back.”
Parting Thoughts for Jim Alers
“Just excited to be in there. I love that I don’t really have the same pressure that I had when I was in the UFC. Was so worried about being cut and something that I worked so hard to get. Retired from fighting in 2018. This just kind of came to me. So I said, I’ll try it out for fun. It has just kind of blown up. so that’s kind of the mindset that I’ve been trying to keep you know. Just have a good time.”
It’s a cool road heading into the fight night and everything like that. Kevin Gleason and whatnot. Just a couple of Flanagan high school class of 2005 graduates there. So that’s cool to see.
“Love getting to work with someone that I’ve known for so long. Just kind of reppin our school and where we’re from. It’s cool to get messages from old classmates. Now that they’re watching and they’re proud of us. That’s always a cool feeling too.”