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The Ultimate Fighter Season 31 Features Conor McGregor And Michael Chandler
The Ultimate Fighter

Meet Bantamweight Carlos Vera | The Ultimate Fighter: Team McGregor vs Team Chandler

Get To Know Vera And The Rest Of The Season 31 Cast On ESPN And ESPN+

Carlos Vera is just one of many hopefuls looking to make a name for themselves on the most epic season of The Ultimate Fighter yet. With legendary coaches Conor McGregor and Michael Chandler on opposite sides of the Octagon, the stakes have never been higher. Let’s meet the Bantamweights and Lightweights that make up the season 31 cast.

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Pro Record: 12-3

Birthplace: Ecuador, South America

Fighting Out Of: 5050 Martial Arts Academy in Falls Church, Virginia 

Age: 35

Quick Stat: Six finishes in 12 pro wins

Get To Know Bantamweight Carlos Vera | The Ultimate Fighter: Team McGregor vs Team Chandler
Get To Know Bantamweight Carlos Vera | The Ultimate Fighter: Team McGregor vs Team Chandler

What does it feel like to be a part of The Ultimate Fighter season 31?

It’s the next step of my journey. I’m a martial artist, I’m a person that started mixed martial arts since I was four years old and gone from traditional competition to amateur competition to professional. This is just the next step in my journey, so I take it with full respect, and I am fully committed to doing the best I can and to learn as much as I can to come out on top.

What was your first reaction when you were told that you were going to be on The Ultimate Fighter?

I said, “This is what’s supposed to happen right now.” This is it. It was excitement, but it felt like the right thing at the right time, so I was very much ready. I wasn’t nervous, I was just like “Cool, let’s do this.”

What advice did your coach, Ryan Hall, give you for the upcoming season?

I think we’re different, but we are similar in a few ways. I am a little bit more of a loner at times. I do know how to be very personable; I worked in corporate finance, and I worked as a bartender, so I know how to change my faces, but, at times, I do like personal space, and this is not the place for a personal space. So, he did give me some tips on how to coexist with other people. 

MORE TUF 31 CAST: Mando Gutierrez | Cody Gibson | Rico DiSciullo | Hunter Azure | Nate Jennerman | Kurt Holobaugh | Jason Knight | Austin Hubbard | Trevor Wells

How would you describe your fighting style for someone who hasn’t seen you compete?

I have a wide range of traditional martial arts experience, so a mix of taekwondo and South American martial arts, and kickboxing and jiu-jitsu for the last six years. So, I’ll go anywhere, and I’m very crafty. That’s the way I see it; it’s a very crafty style and I’ll do whatever I can to win. 

What was your reaction when you heard Michael Chandler and Conor McGregor were going to be the coaches this season?

I was very excited for it. Both guys have stuff to offer, so I most definitely want to absorb as much knowledge as I can. Absorb as much experience as I can, and just take advantage of the situation. They’re both very unique individuals on both sides of the spectrum, but they’ve been in the game, in the media side and the fight side, so I’m very excited to learn from each one of them.

Conor McGregor, Michael Chandler, and Dana White on season 31 of The Ultimate Fighter. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)
Conor McGregor, Michael Chandler, and Dana White on season 31 of The Ultimate Fighter. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

What would you learn from Michael Chandler?

If we’re talking about martial arts or fighting, he’s very good at close range, striking to grappling, and extremely explosive. That is something that I’m always looking to learn from the best. That is his forte, so I want to learn his forte.

What would you learn from Conor McGregor?

Conor is gonna be a little more long-rangy, a counter fighter, feints, and that’s a little more my style, but again I want to be able to pick his brain to see how he chooses his moments. This is a really great opportunity for me to really take on and learn from both of these masters

Who inspired you to start MMA? Any former or current fighters that helped develop your passion?

Tom Lee. He was actually in the same season as Ryan Hall. He’s a former champ. He’s one of my buddies that I’ve seen grow throughout the game and he’s inspiring me. Traditional fighters that have inspired me have been Lyoto Machida and GSP. The martial arts personalities are the ones that I really gravitate towards, contrary to big and flashy.

Before The Ultimate Fighter: Team McGregor vs Team Chandler Preview Show

What do you think is going to be your toughest challenge in making it to the end?

With my personality, I tend to adapt to different energies, and I feel different energies and the nerves that people feel can sometimes be transmitted. So, I think that people’s nerves are going to be up and down and left and right in the house and that might be the toughest thing to make sure that I am in the right space at all times. The fighting is just my job and I’m looking forward to going out there, testing myself and coexisting in this thing with people. I’m Hispanic, so I grew up in a household with a lot of people, so that’s not necessarily gonna be an issue, but the volatility of people’s energy is probably going to be the biggest thing for me. So as long as I stay focused, and I get everything else to fill my purpose and performance, that’s all that I’m really looking forward to. 

Why are you going to be the winner of The Ultimate Fighter season 31?

Everyone is going to have similar answers. ‘I work hard,’ and everybody should be working their butts off, right? But the martial artist that I represent, the ability to evolve, the ability to adapt, the ability to grow, that’s what I really bank on. The better fighter that day wins, not the better fighter, in general. I am gritty. I do have a tough upbringing just like a lot of people in this house, I came from a third world country, I moved to the States. I’m just ready to take it. That’s all it is. I’m ready to adapt and I’m ready to take it.