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Kelvin Gastelum dropping down to welterweight after winning TUF 17 at 185 pounds

Uriah-Hall-Kelvin-Gastelum - MMAWEEKLY21-year old Kelvin Gastelum looked sharp throughout his tilt with Uriah Hall at the Ultimate Fighter 17 Finale, taking the heavily favored striker down repeatedly while delivering bombs from a number of positions. Even more impressive, Gastelum did so as the noticeably smaller man, clocking in at 5’9” in a weight-class ruled by six-footers.

Though Gastelum is unbeaten six fights into his career and has always competed as a middleweight, the newly crowned Ultimate Fighter won’t be continuing the trend now that he’s cemented a spot on the UFC roster alongside the sport’s elite. Rather, he’s ready to move down a division.

“I haven’t talked with Dana White or Joe Silva or anybody, but yeah, that’s what my next move is, or what I want it to be. I haven’t really talked to anybody about it yet,” said Gastelum this week on The MMA Hour. “All my fights have been at 185, but I know that once I get the diet going and my work outs, I’ll be able to make 170 for sure.”

The humble up-and-comer, who nearly quit MMA before coming across an advertisement for TUF 17 auditions, went on to explain his encounter with Hall was all the evidence he needed that welterweight was where he belonged.

“Uriah felt real strong. And I wasn’t able to control him like I wanted to and really finish the fight,” explained Gastelum. “That was the first fight that I haven’t finished in my career. I’m not a point fighter. I go out there and I try to finish fights, so that’s the only thing. He felt really strong.”

Gastelum had picked up three TKOs and two submissions in his five fights prior to TUF 17. On the show he put all three of his opponents away including two in the first frame. Now, with a future facing similarly-sized foes, it appears the odds of Gastelum getting back to his old ways are certainly on the rise.


  • darth_irritable says:

    Absolutely the right call.

  • Screenplaya says:

    It was clear this was the way to go. I am glad to Kelvin is making the right decision. Welterweight is looking even better with him added to the mix.

  • darth_irritable says:

    Although – that sloppy-ass punching of his isn’t going to fly against GSP…

  • MCM says:

    For a guy that finished 6’3″ Bubba, 6’2″ Colin Hart and 6’3″ Josh Sammon on the show, saying 6′ Uriah Hall was too strong says more about Uriah than the MW division IMO.

    I think it’s the right move though.

  • THEGUNNER says:

    He has the same chance against gsp as hall against anserson silva.

  • Mad_Hatter_XX says:

    I think this guy has a real chance to be a star. Not saying he ever wears gold, but a real solid fighter always in the top part of the division and a tough fight for anyone. WW is the right division for him too. I was wondering how he would handle some of the bigger guys at 185 that weren’t his housemates on TUF.

  • Dr.Stoppage says:

    I wonder how much influence the bosses have as far as changing weight divisions go.
    They just spent a season promoting MW, now the winner wants to go to WW without having one MW fight outside of TUF.
    Regardless, wherever KG fights, I’m looking forward to his next one.


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