2013 has certainly been a break-out year for Kelvin Gastelum, as not only did he win the 17th Season of TUF by upsetting Uriah Hall, but he followed it up with a quick submission win over Brian Melancon in August. More recently, he was asked to go train alongside welterweight champ Georges St. Pierre has he prepares for his UFC 167 scrap with Johny Hendricks. Chances are he wouldn’t have called that one year ago.
While speaking to MMA Junkie.com recently, here’s what the 22 year old had to say about getting invited to GSP’s training camp.
“[Georges] requested to have me brought up here, and I’m here and I couldn’t be any happier.” Gastelum said. “I’ve seen him fight since I was 16, 17 years old, and to train with him is an honor.”
Yes, sparring with one of the world’s best P4P fighters, at the world renowned Tristar Gym, is a pretty solid way to improve your skills. The timing is great for Gastelum as well, as he’ll face fellow TUF winner Court McGee at UFC on FOX 9 next month. The undefeated fighter relayed that he hopes to finish the McGee in the first round, and after that? When asked about his post-fight goals Gastelum stated:
“I just want to get some high profile fights,”Gastelum said. “When I win, I want maybe a top-20, top-15 guy. I like to challenge myself.”
Of course, anyone who’s watched McGee fight knows that he’s ridiculously tough and resilient; the 28 year-old’s also never been finished. More recently McGee has rebounded from decision losses to Nick Ring and Costa Philippou by scoring decision wins over Josh Neer and Robert Whittaker. McGee-Gastelum should be an interesting fight.
UFC on FOX 9 will be hosted by the Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento, California on December 14th, and will feature lightweight champ Anthony Pettis taking on Josh Thomson in the main event.
Stay tuned to MMA Frenzy.com for all your UFC news and coverage.