When Calvin Kattar gets his UFC title opportunity, he wants to know that he earned it, not because it was handed to him.
As the No. 5 ranked featherweight contender, Calvin Kattar is potentially a win or two away from a featherweight title shot. During his appearance on ‘The MMA Hour‘ with Ariel Helwani, made it clear that he only wants that opportunity once he has properly earned it.
“Honestly, I don’t want to no f*cking fast track. I want to earn it. When I get it, I want that Charles Oliveira sh*t. I want people proud and happy with me when I get it like, ‘This kid got it through the mud. He earned that.’ I feel like that’s more my story and I’m cool with it because I only want it if I feel like I’ve earned it myself. We’re working hard every day to make that a reality.”
Kattar has gone 7-4 inside the Octagon since debuting for the promotion at UFC 214 in 2017. Kattar had built some momentum earning back-to-back wins over Jeremy Stephens and Dan Ige, but decision losses to Max Holloway and Josh Emmett have halted his ascension up the featherweight rankings.
Calvin Kattar will be in action once again this Saturday night as he headlines a UFC Fight Night card against fellow top contender Arnold Allen.
"I want that Charles Oliveira s***, people proud and happy of me when I get it, [saying] ‘Man, this kid got it through the mud, he earned that.’”
— MMA Fighting (@MMAFighting) October 25, 2022
Calvin Kattar is Backing Alexander Volkanovski Against Islam Makhachev
At UFC 280, Islam Makhachev shocked the world, defeating Charles Oliveira via second-round submission to capture the vacant UFC lightweight championship. The Russian juggernaut was met inside the Octagon with featherweight titleholder Alexander Volkanovski immediately after, signaling a champion vs. champion showdown scheduled for February 2023.
Speaking to Ariel Helwani, Calvin Kattar shared his support for the featherweight champion who is also ranked as the No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter in the UFC.
“Shout out to the champ,” Kattar said. “I respect what he’s doing. There’s no hate on this guy. That’s how a champion’s got to act – want to compete, out there testing themselves, want to be great, seeing how far he can push it. I’m rooting for him in that fight against Islam, and obviously he’s got his hands full.
“[Makhachev]’s a beast. But I just respect the mindset and the willingness to go out and do what you can to be great. I love to see it, and I’m just trying to climb that ladder one step closer to take on him or whoever is next in line for these title fight, and get my name in that discussion.”