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UFC news: Kelvin Gastelum wants No. 1 contender fight

Sangam Shukla
Published Jan 19, 2017
Jan 19, 2017 IST

LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 9: Kelvin Gastelum celebrates after his fight against Johny Hendricks during the UFC 200 event at T-Mobile Arena on July 9, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images)
Can Gastelum defeat Belfort?

What’s the story?

New UFC middleweight Kelvin Gastelum immediately called out “The Phenom” Vitor Belfort after his victory at UFC 206. However, he wasn’t sure if he would face Belfort next until his wish was granted when the UFC officially announced that he will fight the Brazilian at UFC Fight Night 106.

According to, Gastelum is hoping to challenge the number one contender after he defeats Belfort. He was quoted stating the following:

I’m not against (staying at 185), but I feel like welterweight is my optimal weight class. But I’m not against staying at 185, What I want is the No. 1 contender fight after this fight, whether it’s at middleweight or at welterweight. I want to fight for the No. 1 contender so I might get my title shot. But it doesn't matter if I’m at middleweight or welterweight, I just want to fight the No. 1 contender.”

In case you didn’t know...

Kelvin Gastelum is relatively infamous for missing weight. At Welterweight, he has missed weight thrice. He made his return to Middleweight against Tim Kennedy at UFC 206. He won the fight via TKO due to punches in the third round.

Belfort is on a two-fight losing streak and is desperate for a victory. He last fought Gegard Mousasi at UFC 204. He lost the fight via TKO due to punches in the second round.

The heart of the matter

The 25-year-old possess great punching power. Thus he intends to knock out the veteran in the first round. He also believes that a dominant victory over a top fighter like Belfort can help him in securing a title shot. 


What’s next?

The American has made his intentions clear that he will finish the fight in the first round. He has also claimed that “The Phenom” might retire after their fight. The California native is sanguine that he will then fight the number one contender in a title eliminator bout. It’s still to be seen what the Brazilian has to say about Gastelum’s remarks.

Sportskeeda’s take

The American should stay at 185 pounds. It’s a herculean task for him to make weight at 170 pounds. His height and reach are more suitable for Welterweight. He usually might be at a disadvantage in fighting bigger Middleweights.

However, his striking power will considerably increase at a higher weight class. He might face the #1 contender next. However, he will first have to overcome a legendary Brazilian.

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