Andre Ewell: A Fight for Family

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Life has been a constant battle in the case of CES 50 headliner, Andre Ewell. Fighting inside and outside a cage is nothing but normal. The southern Californian fighter battles continue to rage, even well after the most important fire was doused.

Andre Ewell: A Fight for Family

Respect and Experience

Respect is one tenant not afforded to Ewell and his past, which many justified by his perceived lack of experience. He has no amateur mixed martial arts fights, and he trains with a small team. These are all familiar criticisms to him.

While he has no amateur MMA experience, he does have an amateur and professional boxing background. It may not be commensurate with what is expected of the modern mixed martial artist but this is not a matter on the mind of Andre Ewell. Other than fighting, or the scheduled task at hand, there is something far further placed in the forefront of his mind. In fact, it is not a thing but a person, a very special person, his son Eli.

Eli is the center of Andre’s universe. The five-year-old child is the reason why Ewell is the man who challenges for the CES’s vacant bantamweight title.


Without Eli, fighting might have been a thing of the past. The birth of Ewell’s son compelled the Californian to hang up the 10 oz. mitts. It wasn’t entirely causation from new responsibilities. His path in boxing was frustrating as well as disappointing. The experience of turning pro and following the goal he set upon a chance meeting with Roy Jones Jr., left him bitter towards the sport.

In his opinion, it wasn’t fair. Not in the least. He was prey for experienced and financially supported promoters. They threw him from one rising prospect to another upon his arrival to the scene. This major change in his life merely presented an opportunity to redefine himself and his working career.

Eli son of Andre

Not long after the birth of Eli came custody issues. The dread in his voice was minimal when talking through the situation that found him on the other end of the phone as I. Minimal yet it lingered in some of his words.

He described feeling a change in his perception. The nature of the court complications opened his eyes to what he needed to become, not simply for himself but also for his son.

“It’s like no one would know nothing about me if I didn’t go through that drama (of) trying to be in my son’s life. With that, it’s turned into that moment of, ‘Hey, you’ve got to get something and do something you are good at’”, Ewell told MMASucka.

“So that people can start looking at you for who you are instead of looking at what think they you are. (And) What I am is someone that’s really talented at fighting and even though I hated fighting and even though I always found myself in it, it was just something that I was really great at. I moved it over into what I was able to hard work on and it’s (the) passion of missing stuff in my sons’ life and trying to be there, so I have to keep fighting”.

Resurgence with MMA

Keep on fighting is what he does, it is the only thing he can do. Thus far into his career, he’s done quite well for himself. Through 16 professional fights, Ewell holds an impressive record of 12-4. 7 of his 12 victories came KO, overall he holds 10 stoppages victories. Over the course of his 16 fights, he fought for some of California’s best regional promotions. His last appearance came on the main card of LFA 36, where he dominantly handled Trent Meaux, defeating him by TKO in the opening round.

Now, another great opportunity is on the horizon for Ewell. On the opposite end of the country, he headlines CES 50 this week. In the main event, Ewell takes on promotion veteran, Dinis Paiva for the vacant CES bantamweight title. It is an opportunity that he appreciates greatly but the belt is not the only significant chance this matchup presents. For the west coast fighter, it is a chance to cultivate a bigger audience.

“All my fights have been here (California) and I built my fan base around here… I ended up having to look at the bigger picture and the bigger picture is, I want to be worldwide.  Not just one piece. For me to build a bigger fan base I had to bring myself over there to the east side. Like what you stated CES, which is a big company and it’s a good organization so I want to take over that. So I’m not here just to take part, as in you heard what Conor (McGregor) would say, I’m here to take over. CES is what I am aiming for, I am taking over that”.

Defeating the Hero

This trip provides many opportunities but hard-pressed ones. He admitted so himself. His opponent is as true a veteran of the CES promotion as one could be. Each and every one of his professional fights have been for CES. Dinis ‘Sweet Bread’ Paiva has the respect of Ewell, especially in terms of his nickname.

Ewell marked Paiva the hero of CES, its fans, and the region. For that he is correct. It is hard not to have respect for Paiva, as the Rhode Island fighter began his professional career under circumstances which would have deterred many.

Paiva holds a professional record of 11-6. He began his career 3-5, with one loss coming by disqualification. From there, only one more loss is credited to his record. The one loss is the only that separates two impressive four-fight win streaks. 6 of the 8 wins came by stoppage.

“I’m going to a whole different playground, as in his world. I get to see his fans and I get to see what he’s about. What character he’s going to bring to that table. Truth be told, he’s an A-class guy but he’s going against me, I’m completely different and now he has to adapt to me… Everybody’s going to be the same when they enter the cage with me and after we done, we probably get a beer or something”.

“I know that’s their superhero out there but in California, I’m the hero here. It’s their hero against California’s hero and I’m going across the land to automatically prove what’s what. I’m the best, it’s just one of those things. It’s like I stated, 1st round, everything will be settled and it’s going to get to that moment of they will know… Right now I am Deion Sanders on draft day”.

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Brian Gerson is a sports journalist based out of Boston, Massachusetts, specializing in Mixed Martial Arts. He loves animals, fights, and animals fighting. He has met and spoken with countless athletes from the New England region and beyond.

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