Calvin Kattar relied on his longer reach and quicker hands to connect more effectively to carve out a hard-fought, though unanimous, five-round decision victory over Dan Ige yesterday at UFC Fight Night 157 at Flash Forum, Yas Island in Abu Dhabi.
Ige’s face was a puffy mess with his right eye bloodied and completely shut. Kattar suffered a broken nose in the two fighters’ first five-round, main event fight.
“Dan’s a tough kid. I think I’m stronger than these guys mentally. I think it’s tough not to get damage in a fight with my style. Credit to Dan (Ige). He’s a tough kid. But we got the job done,” said Kattar in the televised post-fight interview.
It was a tight, tense battle through most of the five rounds except in the fifth where Kattar’s explosive finish likely helped him win the fight.
The tide turned in Kattar’s favor in the fourth. Ige started to lose his composure after he failed to complete three takedown submission attempts in the round. Kattar was simply too strong and too well balanced.
In the third round Kattar kept advancing, trying to cut off Ige’s lateral and side-to-side movement. But Ige kept himself at a safe distance with nice footwork.
Ige continued to play a smart, composed fight and almost never over extended himself. He kept Kattar at bay with jabs, chopping leg kicks and with one-two combinations.
Ige started landed more effectively in the second round, connecting several times on Kattar’s body and face with his one-two combinations. At the end of the round blood was flowing freely down Kattar’s nose and mouth.
Ige connected with a shot to the body the which set up a brutal left which broke Kattar’s nose. Kattar originally broke his nose in a win over Jeremy Stephens in May.
“Calvin’s (Kattar) one of the best in the world. His jab was killing me. He dictated the fight. I had a lot of fun out there. I tested myself with one of the best in the world,” said Ige.
Kattar scored a unanimous decision victory with the judges scoring it 49-46, 49-46 and 48-47 for him.