PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Eddie Alvarez will make his UFC debut on Saturday at MGM Grand in Las Vegas, against Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone.

Alvarez, who is born and raised in the Kensington section of Philadelphia, says his roots helped shape him into a fighter.

“There was boxing gyms on every corner where I grew up,” Alvarez told 94WIP’s Brian Haddad during his Philly media tour on Tuesday. “We had gym wars when we were little. When I got into wrestling in high school, that sort of took me out of the realm of boxing and more into the combat sports. Just being competitive, you know. Just having that competitive drive, wanting to compete, wanting to work hard. Combat sports really drove me.”

Currently, Alvarez lives in Florida to train, but make no mistake—he’s a Philadelphian.

“I never like to call myself a resident of Florida,” Alvarez said. “I’m from Philadelphia, man, born and raised. I have Philly in my veins. I’m there [in Florida] temporarily to work and then when my job is done I’m gonna take this title, I’m gonna bring it back here to Philly. I’m gonna defend it and I’m coming back right to my house in the Northeast. I’m going no where.”

Haddad also asked Alvarez about a photo of Alvarez putting the Rocky statue in a head lock.

“He was defenseless,” Alvarez joked. “So I went after it. I’m an opportunistic and I went after it. I seen an opportunity and I attacked. If he was a real figure I think he would have tapped.”

Listen to the interview below:

 

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