Wednesday, July 15th
UFC Fight Night: Kattar vs. Ige
Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, UAE
Two top 10 featherweights will meet in the main event as the UFC action from Fight Island continues. Will Calvin Kattar secure another win against a ranked opponent? Will Dan Ige’s 6 fight win streak continue?
Calvin Kattar (21–4) joined the UFC in 2017 after ten years as a professional holding a 16–2 record.
Kattar’s last fight took place at a 150.5lb catchweight after his opponent, Jeremy Stephens, missed weight. The bout at UFC 249 in May, was won by Kattar after a hard elbow dropped Stephens and led to a TKO as he landed more ground and pound shots in round 2.
Now 5–2 in the UFC, Kattar has four KO/TKO wins and has not been stopped in a fight since May 2008.
“The Boston Finisher” has a background in boxing and Muay Thai and I expect him to try to keep the fight standing in order to make the most of his four-inch height advantage and utilize his striking skills to look for the KO. If he wins, it will be against another top 10 opponent, and the fighter from Massachusetts will hope this leads to a contest against someone ranked higher than him.
Dan Ige (14–2) has fought in the UFC for the last year and a half, making his debut in January 2018 at UFC 220. This is his first main event and therefore his first five-round fight.
Prior to this, the Hawaii-born Ige had appeared on Dana White’s Contender Series (series 1) but had not been offered a contract with the organization after his performance. Nevertheless, Ige was brought in six months later as an 8–1 prospect to face Julio Arce, a fight he lost by unanimous decision.
Despite the disappointment of a losing start, “50K” Ige has won every fight since and steps into the octagon this weekend on a six-fight winning streak. The last of these victories came via a split decision against Edson Barboza in May.
Of his six UFC victories, four fights have gone the distance. If this one goes to the judges, it will be the first time Ige has fought for five rounds.
Against Kattar, Ige will probably try to take his opponent to the ground rather than standing and trading. He should aim to control the position and look for a submission if possible. A victory could see him taking Kattar’s place in the Featherweight rankings.
Prediction: Ige by decision
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