Talk regarding Kelvin Gastelum has frequently been tied to his weight, rather than what he’s accomplished in the cage, but the TUF 17 winner understands he’s responsible…
Gastelum is widely considered to be one of the UFC’s most promising fighters, but the 25 year-old’s also drawn a ton of heat, because of his persistent issues making 170. Case in point, Gastelum was supposed to fight Donald Cerrone at UFC 205 in November, but he had to pull out of the fight because he couldn’t make weight.
The UFC brass wouldn’t let Gastelum fight at welterweight next, so instead, he faced middleweight contender Tim Kennedy in December. Gastelum recorded one of his finest performances to date and stopped the rugged fighter in round three.
As a result, Gastelum’s been booked for a pivotal, headlining bout with Vitor Belfort on March 11th. Recently Gastelum was asked about whether all the talk about his weight bothers him, and he offered this (quotes via MMA Junkie):
“It does bother me,” Gastelum said. “But at the same time, I’ve brought it onto myself. I have to face the consequences on a media standpoint now. It does bother me. It bothers me a lot. But I have to take it. I’m not one of those guys who shies away from his problems. I like to handle it upfront and kind of grab the bull by the horns.”
“I don’t know how much physically – but mentally and emotionally, it affects you big time going into the fight,” Gastelum added. “Because you know people are talking so much trash, you know people are talking about you, you know you failed to make weight, and it’s just a big heavy burden that you go into the fight knowing all this. It’s a heavy burden.”
UFC FN 106 will take place Fortaleza, Brazil.