‘Mr. Perfect’ Kang Kyung Ho (36) will return to the cage after a five-month absence.

He will face John Castañeda (31, USA) in a bantamweight (61.2 kg) bout at UFC Fight Night: Allen vs. Craig on Nov. 19 at UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA.

Kang has been on a roll lately, winning two straight fights. In June, he impressed by finishing Christian Quiñones (MEX) with a rear-naked choke at 2:25 of the first round.

Kang, who is returning to action after a five-month absence, sees this fight as his final test to break into the bantamweight rankings.

“If I win by finish this time, I think I can call out a ranker,” said Kang. “I want to call out Chris Gutierrez (32, USA) or Ricky Simon (31, USA), who are ranked around No. 15,” he said. “The goal is always to be a champion, but now it’s good to focus on one fight, one fight, one fight, and have a great fight. Then I think I can meet and fight a good fighter,” he added.

Currently, Kang is considered the closest fighter to breaking into the rankings, along with middleweight Park Joon-Yong (32). His past fights have shown that he’s only gotten better with age, as he said, “I’m almost at the top of my UFC game, and I’m going to show that I’m not there for nothing.”

The retirement of “Korean Zombie” Chung Chan Sung (36) also leaves South Korea without a single UFC veteran. That’s one reason why Kang Kyung-ho, the most experienced South Korean fighter who debuted in the UFC in 2013, is so determined.

His opponent, Castañeda, is a Mexican-American fighter with a wrestling background. He has a career record of 20-6 (3-2 in the UFC) and is very experienced. Kang described his opponent as a sophisticated fighter who embodies the flow of modern mixed martial arts. “I watched Castaneda’s fight, and he’s smart. He’s a fighter who has all the skills that modern MMA fighters have, like level changes and spatial movement,” he warned.

But as a family man, he can’t back down. His wife and newborn son fuel his desire to win. “Now that I’m married and have a baby, I feel like I’ve grown from a child to an adult,” he said. “I have a different mindset now, so I’ll work out a plan with my coach and finish the fight.”

For Kang, striking will once again be his primary weapon. He is ranked No. 1 in the UFC’s bantamweight division in ground-and-pound control, and while he boasts strong wrestling, he is now a professional striker. He messed with Dana Badgerel’s (34, Mongolia) face with a jab and knocked out Quiñones with a front check hook counterpunch.

“I was grappling a lot, so even if I won, it was a little boring, so I switched to striking, and it’s definitely more fun for the viewers, more fun for me, and less physically demanding,” Kang said of his switch to striking. He also revealed his strategy, saying, “I plan to overwhelm him with strikes first, and then go to the ground and actively look for submissions.”먹튀검증

Finally, Kang said, “I’ll be fighting in November, and I’m really confident and preparing hard. I will definitely show you a hot match like last time, so please tune in and watch it.”

Meanwhile, Kang has a career record of 19-9-1 (8-2-1 UFC). He is second on the UFC’s all-time Korean wins list behind Dong Hyun “Stungun” Kim (13).

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