Marvin Vettori Says Robert Whittaker Is Not Hungry Enough for the UFC Middleweight Belt

Published 04/12/2021, 6:45 AM EDT
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS – JUNE 09: Robert Whittaker of New Zealand celebrates after defeating Yoel Romero of Cuba by split decision in their middleweight fight during the UFC 225 event at the United Center on June 9, 2018 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)


Marvin Vettori beat Kevin Holland via unanimous decision in the main event of UFC Fight Night: Vettori vs Holland. ‘The Italian Dream’ is currently on a five-fight winning streak and believes he has made his case to challenge for the belt ahead of other contenders like Robert Whittaker.

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‘Bobby Knuckles’ fights Kelvin Gastelum next weekend. Many believe the former champion should get his rematch against ‘The Last Stylebender’ if he wins. But ‘The Italian Dream’ doesn’t feel ‘The Reaper’ is hungry for the belt.

We’ll see I don’t think Whittaker is that is that hungry, you know, like he missed his shot after like beating Cannonier,” said Vettori recently.

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That was his shot, and he’s he blew it, he blew it, we’ll see I mean next week will tell a lot but he’s he had his had he shot he was a champ he got knocked the hell out. I’m next man. That’s my chance and I don’t even know like I don’t even think he’s going to be as active you know, by October. I don’t think he’s gonna be ready again,” Vettori added.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – OCTOBER 04: UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker of New Zealand interacts with media during UFC 243 Ultimate Media Day at Marvel Stadium on October 4, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

‘The Italian Dream’ also added Kelvin Gastelum to the shortlist of possible next opponent for Israel Adesanya. “Kelvin is a great challenge. So we’ll see how it goes. But I mean, he’s the only other option I mentioned before the title, but he blew his shot. I’m next man,” Vettori added.

Is Marvin Vettori right in his claim about Robert Whittaker?

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Bobby Knuckles‘ has gathered two wins over top contenders since dropping the belt to Israel Adesanya at UFC 243, but his laid-back manner in calling for a rematch might trick people into thinking he doesn’t want to reclaim his belt. However, if he wins against Gastelum, his legitimacy as a contender can’t be ignored.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – NOVEMBER 27: Robert Whittaker of New Zealand celebrates his TKO victory over Derek Brunson in their middleweight bout during the UFC Fight Night event at Rod Laver Arena on November 27, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Vettori on the other hand has certainly established his claim to be relevant in the title picture. However, one might argue he needs to win a few more fights against top challengers to solidify his status as the no.1 contender for the belt.

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What did you make of Marvin Vettori’s recent claims? Let us know your thoughts.

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Apratim Banerjee

736 articles

Apratim Banerjee is an MMA author for EssentiallySports and has been writing professionally for almost a year. Before his current gig, Apratim worked as a UFC writer for Sportskeeda. A long-time MMA fan, Apratim has developed a critical eye for the sport that has helped him transfer his vast knowledge to his copies and give hardcore and casual readers a detailed insight into the fights and fighters.

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