RENOWNED conditioning trainer George Castro said the Alliance MMA gym they plan to put up in the Philippines will be an actual extension of the main stable in California, not a mere local fight club that will use their banner in front.
"We have such a talented pool of fighters and coaches that we can bring out here. I promise you right now we're gonna build one of the best teams in Asia. It's gonna be here in the Philippines," said Castro.
There is still no date for the opening of the camp, plans of which were announced last year, but Castro said it will be done soon, with the luxurious Okada Manila being targeted as the home of their gym.
"Hopefully in the next few weeks we'll have more answers. I'm just excited to put up the gym, actually. I don't care if it's in a backyard of a house. I just want to train fighters in the Philippines," he said.
Founded by a group that included former UFC title contender and now One heavyweight champion Brandon Vera, Alliance MMA has trained the likes of UFC Fighters Dominick Cruz and Alexander Gustaffson - right here in the country.
"Me and Brandon Vera are like brothers. He moved out here to live out here, pursue his acting career and open up a gym with Alliance MMA," Castro said.
"Me being his head coach right now, I had no problem trusting him that we can open one of the top gyms in Asia, if not the world, here," he added.
The arrival of Alliance is a welcome development to the already booming MMA industry in the Philippines.
Team Lakay last year had a fine run and Eduard Folayang claimed the lightweight title with a win over Shinya Aoki in November.
Castro aims to add another major player to the picture and it won't be that hard to attract fighters considering they have Vera in his stable.
"I'm of Mexican heritage. Mexican fighters fight with heart. Filipinos fighters fight with heart, too. As long as you have that heart and you're willing to learn, the other stuff is gonna come easier," he added.