In The Clinch: Chikadze Looks to Topple Kattar, UFC Vegas 46In The Clinch: Chikadze Looks to Topple Kattar, UFC Vegas 46In The Clinch: Chikadze Looks to Topple Kattar, UFC Vegas 46 – No featherweight title shot, no problem for the No. 8 ranked Giga Chikadze (14-2-0) as he rolls into Saturday’s main event with No. 5 Calvin Kattar (22-5-0).

Looking cool, calm, and collected speaking to reporters at the pre-fight press conference Wednesday afternoon at the UFC Apex, Chikadze weighed in on the recent changes at the top of the division.

The Korean Zombie won the featherweight title sweepstakes after champion Alexander Volkanovski declined the advances of Henry Cejudo and Chikadze after Max Holloway pulled out with an injury.

Volkanovski and Zombie are scheduled to clash at UFC 273 in April.

The way Chikadze sees it, Volkanovski took the easy way out, fighting a guy who is 4-3-0 in his last seven fights. But whoever wins, he’ll be there. “I’m the next,” he said.

The focus remains on Kattar.

“He has some good hands, strong. He’s a knockout power guy,” Chikadze said to reporters. “That’s why I give him some credit. He finishes guys. Some people throw 500 punches, they can’t finish the guy. This guy can take 500 punches and keep move forward and usually he finish the guy. That’s why this fight excites me. He’s never been broken; he’s never been knocked out and knocked down. That’s a challenge to me this time.”

Can Giga take things to the next level Saturday?

Kattar is about 12 months removed from a decision loss to Holloway last January. He should be healthy, though probably a little rusty, but also more educated. A win over Chikadze would defend his spot in the top five and put “The Boston Finisher” back on the path towards a title shot. 

We’ll have to see if any of the things that Kattar learned in the Holloway fight will translate into a W on Saturday night. There can be only one.

Two strikers looking to bang one out in the first event of 2022. I can’t think of a better way to break the octagon ice.

Let’s go!

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