Calvin Kattar supports Alexander Volkanovski and not Islam Makhachev.


Calvin Kattar has no issues with Alexander Volkanovski challenging for a second title. He’s actually rooting for Alexander Volkanovski to win the title of featherweight champion.

Islam Makhachev submitted Charles Oliveira on Saturday to win the UFC 280. lightweight title. During his post-fight interview, Makhachev and coach Khabib Nurmagomedov called for a fight against Volkanovski at the upcoming UFC 284 event in Perth, Australia. Volkanovski was happy to oblige and the fight seems set.

This means that the UFC featherweight title will not be up for debate for nearly a year. Kattar is the number one contender according to UFC. 5-ranked contender according to the UFC, sees no issue with that.

“Shout to the champ,” he said to Ariel Helwani during The MMA Hour . He does a great job. This guy is loved and respected. That’s how a champion’s got to act – want to compete, out there testing themselves, want to be great, seeing how far he can push it. He’s clearly got a lot on his plate and I support him.

“[Makhachev]’s a beast. However, I respect your willingness to do whatever it takes to make it great. It’s amazing to me. I just want to be there to witness it.

Volkanovski is currently the No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter in the world and recently delivered the finest performance of his career, dominating former featherweight champion Max Holloway in their trilogy bout at UFC 276. Following that win, “The Great” openly courted a lightweight title shot, even serving as the backup fighter for the UFC 280 main event.

The backup move was a success for Volkanovski. He was introduced into the cage following Makhachev’s victory to prepare for a fight. For Kattar, that shows just how far Volkanovski is willing to go to achieve his goals.

“That is that mentality,” Kattar stated. It’s the champion mentality. It’s something I admire. It is something I love. It would be an honor to compete against him one day, but in the meantime, on the back end, it’s a lot of fun to watch him go out and dare to be great.”

The bout will take place at the RAC Arena on February 12,, though it is not yet official. Volkanovski will be home-field advantage but it doesn’t appear to matter much in public perception. Makhachev already opened as a -360 betting favorite over Volkanovski, implying a 78. 3 percent win probability. Although it might seem unlikely that Volkanovski will become a champ-champ, Kattar believes he is a good chance and will cheer him on.

“Pound-for-pound f****** No. 1 in the world, you’ve got a fighting chance against anybody,” Kattar said. “Hell yeah. “He’s got the chance to beat everybody. I’m rooting for the ’45-pounder. That’s my weight class. I’m not hating. It’s something I value. I’m rooting for him, and I hope he gets the job done.”