After Gastelum’s defeat to Robert Whittaker back in April, the American martial artist is set to step inside the octagon to face Jared Cannonier in the headliner of UFC Fight Night. Gastelum currently finds himself #9 in the middleweight division with his seventeen wins and seven losses. In his long career in the UFC, the 29-year-old has had some amazing fight victories over top opponents, so without further ado, let’s have a look at Kelvin Gastelum’s top-five finishes in the UFC.
5. Kennedy VS Gastelum, UFC 206
Kelvin Gastelum was the man who sent the former military man, Tim Kennedy into retirement and it wasn’t the best of farewells for Kennedy as Gastelum brutally ended things for him at UFC 206 back in 2016. Gastelum who struggled in the welterweight division back then finally felt perfect in the middleweight division. Kelvin, who dominated the entire fight that evening, capitalized on a fatigued Kennedy in the final round where he kept landing vicious punches till his opponent fell on the mat and the referee intervened. This fight put Kelvin Gastelum’s UFC career in the middleweight division right back on track.
4. Gastelum VS Melancon, UFC Fight Night 27
After winning the TUF Season 17 crown, Gastelum moved down to the Welterweight division to take on Brian Melancon at UFC Fight Night 27. This fight has to go down as one of THE most dominant performances in Gastelum’s long career in the UFC. After just two minutes on the clock, Gastelum rocked Melancon with a beautiful combination that connected sweetly and then followed it up with a couple of hooks and an uppercut to send his opponent to the canvas. The next thing we know is Gastelums got Brian’s back and locked in the rear-naked choke to seal his first victory in the Welterweight division.
3. Collin Hart VS Gastelum, TUF season 17
The Ultimate Fighter is where new MMA talents are found. Back in the 17th season of the TUF, we saw a glimpse of what was to come of Kelvin Gastelum. In an exhibition match against Collin Hart, Gastelum proved why he deserved to be a part of the UFC as he knocked his opponent out cold. In the first round itself, Gastelum caught Hart with one of his classic left-right combinations which took him out. The fight should’ve been over right there but the referee thought that Hart was still defending himself so Kelvin followed up with a couple of ground and pound strikes before the referee finally stopped the fight to declare Gastem as the winner via KO.
2. Ellenberger VS Gastelum, UFC 180
UFC 180’s co-main event featured a Welterweight bout between Jack Ellenberger and Kelvin Gastelum back in 2014. After moving down a division, Gastelum wanted to leave a mark on the Welterweight division and this fight was the one that kept his name buzzing in the 170-pound weight category. With 20 seconds of the first round remaining, Gastelum took his opponent back and landed a couple of punches from the top, and once Ellengerger got stunned, he changed from a back mount into a rear-naked choke within seconds to seal the deal.
1. Bisping VS Gastelum, UFC Fight Night
Kelvin Gastelum shocked the UFC world when he knocked out former middleweight champion Michael Bisping in the opening round of his bout at UFC Fight Night in 2017. This fight also marked one of the biggest losses in Bisping’s UFC career. The fight seemed quite open as both fighters were being cautious with their moves. With the first round coming to an end, Bisping decided to finish Gastelum with his right but Gastelum got out of the way and landed a perfect combination to knock Bisping down and then followed it up with some hefty punches to win the fight via KO.
[Header Image Credit: Kelvin Gastelum]