Kelvin Gastelum Claims Robert Whittaker Took ‘Easy Road’ By Taking Luke Rockhold Fight

If Luke Rockhold is next for Robert Whittaker, Kelvin Gastelum wasn’t going to like Rockhold getting the title shot against Whittaker.

Word around the campfire is that former middleweight champion Luke Rockhold may get the call to take on current interim champ Robert Whittaker in the new year.

Gastelum believed his brutal thrashing of former champion Michael Bisping in UFC Shanghai should have put him on the short list of options, but the UFC prefers to give Rockhold the nod quickly put that notion in check. Furthermore, once Gastelum learned how this selection process actually went down, biting his tongue was no longer an option.

Kelvin Gastelum spoke to FloCombat.

“I knew Luke Rockhold and I were both in the front-running for this fight. I was then told Robert Whittaker wanted the tougher fight and he picked Rockhold. In my opinion that is the easier fight because I feel I’m the toughest fight for anyone in this division. I think Whittaker took the easier fight by going with Luke. He’s absolutely worried about me and for good reason. He and I have trained together in the past and know what the other is all about. We know what the other brings to the table.”

So before any potential Rockhold-Whittaker fight can get booked, Gastelum previously posted on social media that the matchup would be a mistake.

“The situation bothers me a little bit with him choosing to fight Rockhold over me. Luke has pretty much been out for two years then comes back and fights David Branch, who wasn’t even competing in the UFC a year ago. He beats Branch and gets the title shot so I don’t know what that says about [the UFC] but it’s not good. That situation is the UFC’s fault because I felt like they knew it was happening. They went ahead and got [Georges St-Pierre] to fight anyway. I feel like everyone knew Georges wasn’t going to defend the belt. I don’t blame him at all. He came back, got the win, won another title, got paid and gets out. I don’t blame him at all. I blame the UFC because they made the match-up. GSP knew what was up. He’s a smart guy. He got in there, got paid and got out. That’s awesome.”

Gastelum lost to Chris Weidman in July, but rebounded with a bit knockout of Bisping in the UFC Fight Night 122 headliner. He has fought in three straight main events, and four of his past five opponents were former UFC champions.

With the middleweight title frame moving on without him and beyond his control, Gastelum plans to switch gears back to chill mode and appreciate the fruits of his labor to close out 2017.

The bright side is that if Gastelum doesn’t want to wait to fight the winner of the UFC 221 main event, we may be able to get him against Yoel Romero, which will be a solid #1 contender match-up. Either way, Gastelum is definitely in the title talk.

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