Angel Pacheco

Angel Pacheco is ready to prove Dana White right in his UFC debut

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Angel Pacheco is commonly known as one of the few warriors who lost at Dana White’s Contender Series, yet still earned a UFC contract. The 32-year-old put on one of the most exciting fights of 2023 in his war against Danny Silva. The MMA world praised him for his iron heart and will.

Pacheco looks to change the narrative on March 30th, when he takes on brash Irishman Caolan Loughran at UFC Atlantic City. Despite facing an opponent who talks trash, Pacheco plans to be himself. He limits his social media usage and focuses on family and fighting.

The Minnesota native splits his training camps between Start BJJ and the New England Cartel. He looks forward to being in the best shape of his life ahead of his UFC debut. Pacheco will be fighting alongside his teammate and fellow DWCS alum Connor Matthews.

Watching “The Real Stuff”

“When I was 12 or 13, I was really into WWF,” shared Pacheco. “My dad walks in the room, throws a DVD on the bed, and tells me, ‘Whenever you’re done watching that fake stuff, watch this.'”

This DVD ended up changing his life. It was a replay of the UFC 49 fight between Yves Edwards and Josh Thomson. “That fight was awesome,” exclaimed Pacheco. “I don’t know why, but from that moment, I was like, ‘Oh my goodness, I want to try this.'”

Right after that, Pacheco’s father, who used to get into street fights during his childhood, agreed to teach his son how to box. He also enrolled his son in Japanese Jiu-Jitsu in their hometown of Willmar. By the time Pacheco was in high school, he had competed in wrestling and had trained twice daily since then.

Father & Son Bond Through The Sport

The Minnesota native’s family has always been supportive of his training. Pacheco’s father has remained involved, as he now holds mitts for his son in the UFC. He also helps prepare his son’s mind ahead of war. ‘We go over game plans for whoever we’re fighting,” Pacheco shared.

Along with his father’s constant guidance, Pacheco shed light on his family’s overall toughness. This includes his iron-minded parents, role-model sisters, and, most importantly, his determined grandmother. His Abuela still works, simply because she wants to… Not because she needs to.

“Everybody around me is so much tougher than me,” concluded Pacheco. “I feel like a baby compared to them.”

A Superstar Wife

Many rising prospects, including several UFC fighters, must hold multiple jobs. That is the hard reality of MMA: Only the best fighters can support their family members solely through fighting.

Pacheco, however, is blessed to have been a full-time fighter for the past 3 years. He did a superb job saving money from his previous job at an electronic recycling company. Most significantly, his wife Jessica works a full-time remote corporate job. While Pacheco trains during the day, she watches their daughter, Alessia. “I am very blessed and lucky to have a wife that supports me in that manner,” he admitted.

Whenever Jessica’s day is crowded with meetings, Pacheco brings Alessia to the gym. This is never a sweat, as she gets along very well with his head coach at Start BJJ, Brock Larson. These sacrifices are why Pacheco mentions his wife in every interview. “She’s very selfless,” he stated. “She takes on a lot, and that’s why I always mention it. I do appreciate it.”

While the Minnesota native fights his heart out, he will forever be grateful for his beautiful family, who helped him accomplish his dreams. At UFC Atlantic City, those dreams finally become reality.

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