Former UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker continued his journey back to the title Saturday night.
Whittaker defeated Kelvin Gastelum via unanimous decision (50-45, 50-45, 50-45) in the UFC Fight Night main event at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas.
"The Reaper" dominated the fight in the stand-up department from start to finish. He had the edge on Gastelum 103 to 64 in total strikes, according to the broadcast.
After the win, Whittaker expressed interest in a rematch with current middleweight champion Israel Adesanya.
"I think we should talk, mate. I think it's about time we crossed paths once again," Whittaker said in his postfight interview. "I think we can get a sold-out stadium. They might even open up the borders for Australia in September. Let's make that happen. Let's see if we can get a stadium back home."
Whittaker lost the title to Adesanya by second-round knockout in October 2019, but the 30-year-old believes he has what it takes to reverse the outcome in a rematch.
"I think I've got some tricks he hasn't seen yet," Whittaker said. "I'll give him a good run, I think."
Gastelum busted up Whittaker's face with his own fair share of punches, and his chin held up until the end, but Whittaker stayed more active on the feet and landed the more effective offense.
With the victory, Whittaker has won three in a row since dropping the belt to Adesanya. The No. 1-ranked middleweight's current streak also includes decision victories over Jared Cannonier and Darren Till.
Gastelum, ranked No. 8, stepped in on short notice for Paulo Costa. He dropped to 1-4 in his last five.