LAS VEGAS – Alex Morono did it for Dad when he defeated Mickey Gall via unanimous decision Saturday.

At UFC on ESPN 31, Morono (21-7 MMA, 10-4 UFC) extended his winning streak to three. But more important to him than that, he made his father, who was in attendance in Las Vegas, proud.

“No extra pressure at all,” Morono told MMA Junkie at a post-fight news conference. “My wife and my brother, who are the best, most supportive people I could ever hope for, were both like, ‘Hey, that’s not going to mess with you.’ I’m like, ‘Man, I’ve done this so many times.’ Plus, when you’re in such a high-stress scenario like a fistfight in the octagon, you don’t have time to think about anything else.

“More than the win, it’s funny, because if you look at someone’s mom and dad, my mom is the one who screams, ‘Kill him. Get him.’ And my dad is just like, ‘I hope you don’t get hurt.’ He’s the one who got me introduced to MMA, 15 (or) 16 years back. I know he was happy I didn’t really get touched up. I know he was happy to get the win.”

Morono gave his father a shoutout in his post-fight interview. His father was shown cageside, emotional as his son discussed the win with UFC commentator Daniel Cormier. The win comes after what Morono described as an emotional decade for his father.

“My oldest brother is a genius,” Morono said. “He’s a very, very self-made, very wealthy, very smart (guy). But my dad had looked over one of our other brothers for the last five or six years. He had a really bad substance abuse problem, and he ended up unfortunately passing away, and I just knew the last decade was just challenging for my father. To give him this trip and let him see me fight and win, I just know it made him so proud. For me to give that back to him, it’s more valuable than anything. It’s more valuable than the win. It’s more valuable than the money, which is great.”

Dad was feeling emotional following Alex Morono’s decision over Mickey Gall.

— TSN (@TSN_Sports) December 5, 2021

UFC on ESPN 31 took place Saturday at the UFC Apex and aired on ESPN/ESPN+.

To see the full interview with Morono, check out the video above.


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