Long road back to UFC for Winnipeg’s Brad Katona

Winnipeg mixed martial artist Brad “Superman” Katona is back home, getting some much-needed rest and relaxation after recently winning another “The Ultimate Fighter” title in the cage, becoming the first-ever two-time winner of the UFC reality show.

“I’m gonna try to take in as much as this Winnipeg sun as I can,” said Katona. “Because the summer in Ireland just doesn’t quite do it.”

Looking not much worse for wear, Katona is enjoying life back in his hometown for the next two weeks after picking up an unanimous decision victory in the bantamweight final of The Ultimate Fighter finale.

It’s another record breaking achievement after already becoming the first Canadian to win a regular season of the show in 2018.

“To have two in the trophy case, if you will, is cool,” he said. “I doubt it will ever be repeated because it’s a very unique accomplishment. It’s not necessarily more impressive than what other people have done. But it is unique.”

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Going onto the show, the 31-year-old knew it was now or never in his quest to return to the UFC. He was looking to make most of his second chance, knowing a third one probably wouldn’t be coming.

He had a 1-2 record in his first go around before getting dumped by the promotion a little over three years ago.

“There was a lot of times over the past few years that I didn’t know if this would happen,” said Katona. “During that dark period I never lost sight of the goals.”

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After his release Katona went on a four-fight win streak and won a Brave Combat Federation championship before getting back on the reality series.

“I knew that if I wasn’t successful in every fight, I had to win every fight, then that was my UFC dream gone,” Katona said. “Like if I lost, if I had a misstep, if I got injured, if I got sick, that was it. That’s how fragile my dream was.”

Winning TUF earned Katona a $50,000 fight of the night bonus and gets him another three fight UFC contract with a much bigger payday.

“Two days before my fight, I moved the last of money into my Irish account to pay rent,” he said. “I was on fumes if you will. And that bonus, it provides some freedom. And that freedom I haven’t felt in a very long time.”

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Who and when he’ll fight again is a worry for another day when he gets back to the grind and returns to training at his base in Dublin.

“Right now I’m on doctors’ orders,” Katona said. “I’m on coaches’ orders to kick up the feet.”

Click to play video: 'RAW: UFC Ultimate Fighter Winner Brad Katona Interview'

RAW: UFC Ultimate Fighter Winner Brad Katona Interview

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