UFC president Dana White wasn’t just concerned about Calvin Kattar’s well being during during his fight with Max Holloway. He feared for Kattar’s life.
This is not an exaggeration.
Kattar took a beating his during UFC on ABC 1 headliner against Holloway on Jan. 16, absorbing a single-fight record 445 significant strikes, which shattered the previous mark of 290. But Kattar made it to the final horn and lost a unanimous decision after five rounds.
In Round 4, a bloodied Kattar found himself in an especially dangerous spot as Holloway poured it on and went for the finish. This is where things took a serious turn for White, from praising Holloway’s performance to grave concern for Kattar.
As shown during the UFC-produced “UFC’s Grand New Stage” video on YouTube, White – who was cageside with Matt Serra and Din Thomas – wanted the fight stopped in the fourth round. When referee Herb Dean let it continue, White walked over to UFC chief business officer Hunter Campbell and said he was worried about Kattar dying.
“He took so much (expletive) punishment in this fight, I’m freaking out a little bit, man. I don’t like it,” White said. “This reminds me of the kind of fight where the fight’s over, and he walks on back and (expletive) dies. I think that (expletive) Herb Dean should’ve stopped it in the fourth round. He was wobbling all over the (expletive) place.”
White continued on with Campbell, “When this fight’s over, no stopping, no talking. Get this kid in an ambulance and get him the (expletive) out of here immediately.”
As he watched the fifth, White said “this (expletive) round can’t end fast enough for me.”
After the fight ended, White approached Kattar’s cornermen to reiterate what he told Campbell – that he wanted Kattar rushed to the hospital.
Kattar’s manager and head coach, Tyson Chartier of the New England Cartel, told MMA Junkie that his fighter sustained a broken nose and also required eight staples in his scalp. Kattar received a six-month medical suspension as a result of the fight.