“The Underground King” Eddie Alvarez believes an entrance theme is one of the most important pieces of a warrior’s identity.
The track sets the mood in the arena, properly introduces the athlete to the fans, and, in many ways, it describes the competitor’s attitude at that very moment.
“I feel like a walkout song is all about the beat,” the 36-year-old mixed martial arts legend says. “It’s less about the words and more about the beat. It’s about what you feel inside.”
The American’s entrance themes have become reflective of both his life and historic career.
For most of his life, he used the hard-hitting banger “Victory” by Puff Daddy featuring The Notorious B.I.G. and Busta Rhymes.
This hip-hop classic may be played at many sporting events around the world now, but it has always been linked with “The Underground King” since Bad Boy Records released the song in March 1998.
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Alvarez, who is a longtime rap aficionado, often listened to this track before his wrestling meets in high school.
“In my youth, I would listen to a lot of stuff like Biggie Smalls, 2Pac, and a lot of other rap and hip-hop artists,” the Philadelphia native explains.
“When I would compete and wrestle in high school, ‘Victory’ was the song I came out to. That’s a song that really brings me back to competing as a kid.”
That song carried over from Alvarez’s high school wrestling days to his mixed martial arts career, as he used the track when he competed in North America.
While the battle-hardened beat sets the mood, the lyrics serve as a source of motivation for “The Underground King.”
“The wording in ‘Victory’ talks about everything it takes to be successful and everything it takes to stay the champion, and what a champion’s mind is like,” he explains. “That is, for me, what the song ‘Victory’ epitomizes.”
For his ONE Championship debut in March 2019, however, Alvarez made a switch.
He started using “The Champ Is Here” by Jadakiss as his entrance theme, which he previously walked out to when he competed in DREAM nearly a decade earlier.
The musical selection pays homage to his earlier days competing in Asia, but it also serves as a nod to his reputation as a four-time Lightweight Mixed Martial Arts World Champion.
Whether he uses “Victory” again in the future or not is anyone’s guess. But one thing is for certain: the American will most certainly set the mood with his walkout song and ignite the global fanbase with his elite skills.