Calvin Kattar violently returns with a beatdown of his own

LAS VEGAS — Calvin Kattar might need to rethink this technique of combating in the midst of January.

On Jan. 16, 2021, Kattar went to Abu Dhabi to face Max Holloway in what was a large alternative for him in opposition to a former featherweight champion. Holloway, although, set a document for most vital strikes landed and gained a choice by scores of 50-43 twice and 50-42.

Kattar took a complete 12 months off and went from going through Holloway, the very best striker within the division, to assembly Giga Chikadze, one of many division’s most harmful strikers, on Saturday in the primary occasion of UFC Vegas 46 at Apex.

Similar to a 12 months earlier, Kattar absorbed an excessive amount of punishment. However he proved his braveness and can are past reproach and dealt out a brutal beating of his personal. Kattar gained a unanimous resolution, 50-45 twice and 50-44, earlier than getting one other journey to the hospital.

“I feel like s***, but I’ve also never felt better,” mentioned Kattar, who entered the combat ranked fifth to Chikadze’s eighth however went off as higher than a 2-to-1 underdog. “I don’t feel too great, but he’s a great fighter — 7-0 in the UFC, he’s doing something right.”

Kattar, although, did a lot proper on this night time. His legendary toughness was on show once more. Chikadze got here out quick and was piecing up Kattar early with kicks and punches.

When Chikadze slipped and went down, Kattar chased him and the rest of the primary spherical was a grappling match between two of the game’s most harmful fighters. Chikadze was by no means the identical after that.

“There were a couple of things I think affected the fight,” UFC president Dana White mentioned. “There was the wrestling and grappling in the first round, and then that spinning elbow [Kattar] hit him with.”

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - JANUARY 15: (R-L) Calvin Kattar elbows Giga Chikadze of Georgia in their featherweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on January 15, 2022 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

(R-L) Calvin Kattar elbows Giga Chikadze throughout UFC Vegas 46 at Apex on Jan. 15, 2022 in Las Vegas. (Picture by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC by way of Getty Photos)

Chikadze was gassed by the top of the second spherical. Kattar’s ahead stress was relentless and he was attacking as if he had been a truck storming downhill with out brakes. His stress restricted Chikadze’s alternative to make use of his kicks, one in every of his greatest weapons, and he took quite a lot of punishment the remainder of the way in which.

Kattar’s resolution to take a seat out a complete 12 months after the Holloway loss as a substitute of dashing again in additionally paid dividends. He allowed his physique to recuperate and he was capable of deal with a quick tempo and a robust assault from a high quality opponent, profitable a $50,000 Struggle of the Night time bonus for the second bout in a row.

“After that fight with Max, you have to take a year off,” White mentioned. “You have to. It absolutely, positively did [help Kattar]. He needed that time off.”

The bumps and bruises don’t harm as a lot the day after, although, whenever you’re on the appropriate facet of a one-sided resolution.

Krause was in every single place

James Krause remains to be an lively fighter, however he’s going to make his best mark on the game with his teaching potential. He’s already turn into one of many sport’s higher coaches, and with time and expertise, he might simply be the very best within the enterprise.

Krause had a busy night time on Saturday. He labored 4 corners, together with three of the primary 4 fights. His solely win got here within the card’s opener, when T.J. Brown dominated Charles Rosa.

He labored Kevin Croom’s nook in Croom’s loss to Brian Kelleher within the second combat of the night time, a choice for Kelleher. Croom took the bout on three days’ discover.

He closed out the preliminary card by working Joseph Holmes’ nook in a combat gained by resolution by Jamie Pickett. After which within the second combat on the primary card, he labored Dakota Bush’s nook in opposition to Viacheslav “Slava Claus” Borshchev. Borshchev landed an ideal left to the physique that dropped Bush and Borshchev rapidly completed it.

So it was a 1-3 night time and Krause wasn’t thrilled. He was requested about turning into one of many sport’s most sought-after and revered coaches, and grimaced.

“You ask me that tonight and it’s hard,” Krause mentioned. “We were [1-3] but we had four really tough fights. But as a coach, focusing on the results is such a f***ing roller coaster. With wins come tougher opponents and that makes the wins harder. I try not to focus on the results so much, though I know it’s difficult because it’s a results driven sport. I try to focus on my guys’ performance and their improvement.

“Even though we were 1-3 tonight, I was really happy with my guys and I felt like there was a lot of improvement. Sometimes it’s hard to see that when they lose fights, but I very much believe in day-in, day-out consistency. That’s the key to being a good coach.”

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - JANUARY 15: (L-R) Court McGee and Ramiz Brahimaj trade punches in their welterweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on January 15, 2022 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

(L-R) Courtroom McGee and Ramiz Brahimaj commerce punches at Apex on Jan. 15, 2022 in Las Vegas. (Picture by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC by way of Getty Photos)

Powerful being good on a regular basis

Courtroom McGee, whose battles with medication and alcohol almost took his life, gained his second in a row Saturday after a three-fighting dropping streak when he defeated Ramiz Brahimaj by resolution.

An in depth good friend of McGee’s urged him to be meaner and the outcomes had been there. He was throughout Brahimaj and will have had a knockout had the primary spherical been 15 or 20 seconds longer.

However after the bout, he had a line that summarizes who he’s fairly properly. Explaining his nickname, “Crusher,” McGee talked about his tendency to be so easy-going.

“It’s tough trying to be kind all the time,” McGee mentioned.

If solely extra of us needed to deal with that very same downside.

Chookagian’s contract points

For the second time in just a little over two years, Katlyn Chookagian gained a unanimous resolution over Jennifer Maia. After the win at UFC 244 on Nov. 2, 2019, in New York, she earned a flyweight title shot in opposition to Valentina Shevchenko.

Chookagian was stopped by the champion on Feb. 8, 2020, however has gained 4 of 5 since, together with Saturday’s spectacular win. She was requested if she anticipated one other title shot, notably since she’s ranked No. 2 at flyweight.

“This was the last fight on my contract, so the UFC needs to re-sign me before I think about that,” she mentioned. “I’m on a three-fight win streak, all [against] Top 5 opponents, so you’d think they’d re-sign me. They didn’t want to extend my contract before the fight, so hopefully I proved I belong here. I’m No. 2 in the division and I’ve been at the top, No. 2 or No. 1 for three or four years.”

White, although, was non-committal.

“We’ll see what happens,” he mentioned. “We’ll get again within the room on Tuesday and determine what’s subsequent.

Jobber Wiki creator Frank Lengthy added to this report.