(Source: www.forbes.com)

Tyson Chartier

Calvin Kattar made himself a promise long ago. As long as he had the fire to fight, he’d always be ready for the next call.

Even as a year went by between fights and even though he’s pushing 30, the guy who had made such a name on the local fight circuit was making one last run at the big time. Yet, even as he trained with UFC-level fighters this year, Kattar wondered if his determination was fighting a losing battle with destiny and the clock.

“I knew I was right there with anyone on passion, but I’ve been working this road for 10 years, and at some point, you wonder if that chance is ever coming,” Kattar said.

If you’re a fight fan in New England, you know all about “The Boston Fighter.” And you have likely wondered why a fighter with such a sound all-around game and an infectious personality hadn’t got that shot.

It’s part of the instant connection he has made with so many fans, from his hometown of Methuen, Mass. to nearby Boston, New England and up and down the East Coast. He sold out fights for years at the recently demolished Rockingham Park, as hard-working, blue-collar locals ate up the chance to live vicariously through Kattar and watch him dominate.

Three years ago, Kattar decided to stop making other promoters money and waiting for other people to determine his future. He bought Combat Zone MMA, the longest-running MMA event promoter in New England, and decided to focus more on promoting than fighting.

Little did he know he was higher on the UFC’s radar than he imagined. After years of hearing the phone would ring, that call finally came.

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