Garrett Armfield on Win Over Brad Katona: ‘By Far My Toughest Test Yet’
Armfield said he’s feeling “great” after the win.
“I’ve kind of soaked it in at this point, and I’ve put myself in a great position for the rest of 2024,” Armfield told MMASucka. “I feel like there are going to be a lot of opportunities on the horizon.”
Armfield got his first UFC win over Toshiomi Kazama in August and then got a steep step up in Katona, a two-time winner of The Ultimate Fighter. Katona has TUF exhibition wins over featherweight top-10 mainstay Bryce Mitchell, Kyler Phillips and Timur Valiev, as well as a UFC win over Cody Gibson.
Armfield said the win over Katona in their bantamweight battle is “by far” the biggest of his career yet.
“He’s the one with the biggest name out of all my opponents,” Armfield said. “Most established. Most accolades. So by far my toughest test yet. He’s a great fighter, and it was a fun fight.”
Armfield’s game plan going into the fight was to stay at range given his 5.5-inch reach advantage over Katona. Armfield said he established his range very quickly, though.
“I was comfortable being in boxing range with him. It didn’t bother me, even though it was initially not the plan,” Armfield said.
Armfield got the better of Katona in the boxing, while Katona pushed for takedowns and control time. Armfield won 29-28 on all scorecards, though there was some dissent among the three judges about which fighter won which rounds.
Given the fight was in Toronto, Canada – Katona’s home country – Armfield said he was nervous heading into the scorecards.
“I was extremely tired,” Armfield said. “I feel I lost the third round due to control time. My initial thought was he won the fight in the moment. Looking back at it and watching the fight, I definitely won. I’m very happy with my performance, but I was shocked.”
Armfield said he won the first and second rounds “for sure,” which two judges agreed with. Sal D’Amato scored the first round for Katona and the third round for Armfield.
“You can definitely say in the third round that I did continue to get up and I was the one who was advancing and throwing power when [Katona] wasn’t shooting takedowns, so there could be an argument if it was only control time that they’re looking at.”
Armfield said he hasn’t given too much thought about who he would like to fight next.
“I want to have a couple of more fights before I even consider talking about a top-15 opponent,” he said. “I feel like I have a lot more work to do to get to that point. Granted that Brad Katona was a bigger name. I’m OK with taking my time and fighting guys who don’t have as much experience or the same amount of experience as I do and being able to build up my cage time. That was only my second time going to a decision, too, for my entire career. I want more opportunities like that where I’ll be able to see all that I can in the UFC before I start getting into the fights where I can make a run at the top 15.”
Armfield said he is proud to be finding success in a division as deep as 135 pounds.
“It’s awesome that I should be able to do this in a really hard division.”
Featured Image credit:Embed from Getty Images